Last Friday I headed out to a pop up tea party in Dunfermline. It was really nice to go to something on home turf, and drinking tea and eating cake is a pretty good way to spend a Friday evening as far as I'm concerned.
The Dunfermline Tea Party Society is run by Chrissie, who loves tea and vintage crockery. A girl after my own heart! It's so nice to have a company like this based in Fife and I was keen to find out a bit more about Chrissie and her exciting new venture so I caught up with her to ask a few questions.
Q. Tell us a bit about yourself and how you came up with the idea for The Dunfermline Teaparty Society.
A. So.... The Dunfermline Tea Party Society was one of those light bulb moments when you're least expecting it. My friend had passed on a set that needed a home, and it sat out in the kitchen for about a week. I loved it but my husband, Ross, then started to ask where it was actually going to go. I couldn't really give him an answer, so just shrugged my shoulders and walked away hoping that would be the end of the conversation ;) He did have a point as my collection is pretty big now... It wasn't until a few days later when I was folding some washing that the idea landed on me, "You could rent your sets out!".... Hrmm... I thought, that's a good idea and to be honest one I don't know why I hadn't thought of before. For a few weeks I didn't really do anything with the idea but I couldn't stop thinking about it, and I thought that maybe this was a sign to see where this idea takes me. This was only back in February and in the short time till now its pushed me so far out my comfort zone, (putting the idea out there, staring a Facebook & Instagram page, vlogging for the first time and holding my first ever pop up party), but again I hope all of this is a good sign that I've found what I should be doing. Helping to bring people together through tea, throwing amazing tea parties.
Q. Where did your love of tea and teacups come from?
A. I've always loved all things vintage and in my art school days was described as kitsch. But my collection truly started when I was getting married. We thought it would be fun to have a cake buffet, so that's when I started buying cake stands for our big day. This soon lead on to tea cups and all things tea related, including a dresser to show off my favourite and sentimental pieces. My tea drinking comes from my mum, who drinks even more of it than me! I think tea drinking is ingrained into us from watching our families drink tea, when anyone pops around the kettle goes. I really believe in the powers of tea, and how in almost all situations it's there for you. In good times and bad, often the first thing we do is pop the kettle on and share a cuppa. It brings people together and at the same time gives you that 10 mins peace you need to conquer the day.
Q. What are your future plans for The Dunfermline Tea Party Society?
A. My plans for The Dunfermline Tea Party are still very much at the early stages but I'm open to let it change and develop naturally. At the moment I hope to be able to help people throw parties and events in their homes using my collection and props. I also hope to use my creative skills to help style and dress the party to the themes and needs of the customer. I love the finishing touches and details and feel that these small, personal touches are where I can be different from all the other great tea party businesses out there. As I and The Dunfermline Tea Party Society grow, I hope to be able to throw more pop up events and perhaps a pop up cafe down the line, that bring all different people together, giving something back to the local community. I would love to help others through tea who are maybe lonely or in need of a good cuppa with friendly people. I'm also trying to figure out how to incorporate my first creative business Turtle Mummy Crafts, so I still have a lot of thinking to do.
Q. How will it work?
A. At the moment, I hope that through getting to know my customer over a cuppa, we'll discuss their party needs and take it from there. Everyone is different, so each celebration should be different. I'll be there to set up and make sure everything looks great for the party. I hope to give a really personal service and get to know my customer and their needs. Planning even a small party takes up so much time and can be very stressful in our busy, 24/7 lives and that's where I can help by taking care of "setting the stage" for a fantastic party, making good memories over tea.
Keep up to date with Chrissie and her plans for The Dunfermline Tea Party Society through her Instagram, Facebook and Youtube.
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Photograph taken by me