Angel Adoree first came to my attention when she appeared on BBC business show Dragons’ Den. Entering the den, Angel looked nothing like the usual entrepreneur pitching for cash. Eschewing a conservative business suit, Angel was decked out in vintage 1940s splendour, with her (probably not natural!) red locks styled in victory rolls. Wow. She then proceeded to woo two of the Dragons—Deborah Meadon and Theo Paphitis—with her business acumen, securing an offer to invest in The Vintage Patisserie, a company hosting bespoke tea parties with a vintage vibe. Double wow.
Given my love of tea and cake, The Vintage Tea Party Book was always going to be high on my 2011 Xmas wishlist. Santa did not disappoint. This book—beautifully illustrated throughout—is a joy to dip in and out of.
All aspects of hosting a vintage tea party (at any time of day—even breakfast) are covered: venue, invitations, props and staging, recipes for food and drinks, fashion, parlour games. Fancy setting your hair in the aforementioned victory rolls especially for the occasion? Or perhaps you struggle to fix false eyelashes. Well, no need to fret, Angel helpfully provides full instructions. She also explains how to make bunting, a fascinator and a saucy little art deco-inspired apron. Even old-school male grooming is covered. Waxed moustache, anyone?
I have yet to try any of the recipes but the full colour photos suggest that everything will be delicious. I am particularly taken with the alcoholic tea-based cocktails, such as the Tea-quila-sunrise and Oolong Mo-tea-to-go (Mojito).
Nostalgia continues to fascinate us. Perhaps it’s something to do with the recession. Whatever the reason, The Vintage Tea Party Book will surely be a welcome addition to the bookshelf of any self-respecting afficianado of all things vintage.
So, let’s roll up the rug, pop a Glenn Miller record on the turntable, and immerse ourselves in a bygone era. Could someone pass the cucumber sandwiches, please?
The Vintage Tea Party Book by Angel Adoree is published in the UK by Mitchell Beazley, an imprint of Octopus Publishing Group.