photos by Jared Smith
When BHLDN asks you to team up with them to style a tea party themed soiree, you naturally do two things: one being to run a few laps around your studio out of sheer excitement, and the second being to go buck wild and transform your whole studio into a Grand Budapest Hotel inspired wonderland from top to bottom.
Lucky for you I don’t skimp on the details when it comes to get togethers, and thus a tea party with BHLDN is anything but an exception, so I’m going to share alll of the details, how-to’s, and even a few freebies for you to create your own!…
I’m not a huge fan of over-the-top attire when it comes to enjoying the outdoors (or hypothetical gardens in this case!), instead I’d much prefer something cute and casual (or maybe I’m just not cut out for high tea?!). Either way, BHLDN has the perfect ensembles for a sweet yet sophisticated garden party, while still keeping it just the right touch of casual with this Reese dress and Savannah Topper, the Celestina dress in Ivory, and my favorite, the Prato Romper.
Pair all of that with the all-too-pretty hair and makeup by Southern & Adorn, a few cute Mendl’s boxes as your accessories (don’t worry, we’re getting to that part!), and a pink ombre floral wall and you’re all set!
To set the tone for the space with the DIY ombre floral backdrop, I dip dyed a bed sheet in hot pink fabric dye, rinsed, and let it dry completely. Then we attached it to the wall, and Carly used bulk flowers from Fifty Flowers and a few select greens to create the amazing floral garlands throughout.
To attach them, she actually hand-sewed them to the fabric backdrop with an embroidery loop needle, and then used water tubes on the ends of each of the floral stems before sewing those on so that they would last several days.
Carly also arranged the table setting florals in the BHLDN ivory and golden hobnail vases, and some we even sweetly nestled inside the conservatory envelope holder for a unique centerpiece in the vintage seating area.
Once you have your setting and attire down, the next most important step is sweets…obviously. I know I’ve taught you well in this category, because this is where over-the-top is always okay!
To help make it all happen, I enlisted the help of my good friend Monica from Paper Flour Ink to create Grand Budapest Hotel inspired cakes and tiered bundt cakes to serve atop these pretty in pink cake stands, tea party paper plates (so cute, you can hardly even tell they’re paper!), gold-dipped serving set, and served with a side of Rose in these gold rim coupes.
With this many pretty sweets you’re around, it’s inevitable to have a few extras leftover, so we made Mendl’s inspired boxes from plain white 6 inch folding cake boxes with a bit of double sided tape and four colorful designs for you to print and make at home, too!
DIY Printable Mendl’s Boxes
- 6 inch square white cake boxes
- Double-sided tape
- Printed Mendl’s designs (you’ll need four squares for each box)
Naturally I had to throw in my own little DIY with these mini Grand Budapest Hotel macarons with Mendl’s delivery trucks and the hotel facades on them! I also loved the way the plain ombre colors tied everything together, so I left just a few plain and simple.
For seating, I wanted to create a space that felt rich and vintage, but with just the right touch of modern and unique, so we used mid century chairs from Indre By Design, a vintage rug from Rent The Foundry, custom mod patterned pillows from Darci Towns, and a retro inspired tulip side table.
All in all, I’ll dare to say that this may be my current favorite shoot we’ve ever done on Sugar & Cloth! It was super fun getting to transform the space from the usual bright white into something a lot more whimsical!
What do you all think, is this something you’d want to recreate for your next big soiree?!
Sources and Vendors: clothing and tabletop decor from BHLDN // hair and makeup by Southern & Adorn // cakes by Paper Flour Ink // floral arrangements and floral garland installation on backdrop by Margot Blair // bulk flowers provided by Fifty Flowers // vintage chairs in vignette by Indre By Design // vintage rug in vignette by Rent The Foundry // white table, red ornate legs, and garden table chairs from Ikea // patterned pillows and ombre table linens by Darci Towns // marble tulip table from Dot & Bo // pot de creme desserts by Tout Suite
This post is made possibly by BHLDN! Thank you for supporting the brands we love that keep bigger and better DIY’s and even sweeter sweets coming straight to your inbox everyday!
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