Everything stops for tea…
Surrey-based Dani, founder of The Icing on the Cake, used her maternity leave to work on starting her pop-up tea party catering business. Two years later the business has gone from strength to strength with Dani and her team working on weddings, baby showers, children’s parties and other private events. “My baby shower doubled up as my launch party” Dani laughs. “Seven and a half months pregnant I hosted a vintage tea party in the top floor of a wine bar where I catered for 35 of my favourite ladies”.
Dani combined her passion for baking with her love for all things pretty and vintage. As well as mouth-watering homemade treats, Dani and her team (of tea maids and butlers!) will adorn your tables with lovely embroidered linens, vintage cutlery and crockery, flowers, tea lights and bespoke menu cards. “I love the fact that we’re giving these beautiful pieces of history a new lease of life” Explains Dani. “We bring the beautiful tea sets back to their former glory and use them as they were intended; for special occasions”.
So, with the scene set, reminiscent of a 1930s tea parlour, what about the food? Afternoon tea prices start from £15.50 per head and include a selection of finger sandwiches, such as smoked salmon and lemon mayonnaise, free-range egg mayonnaise and cress and cucumber and cream cheese. Sweet treats include homemade fruited scones, with clotted cream and red berry jam; meringue kisses, rich chocolate brownies, chocolate éclairs, coconut macaroons, blueberry cake and good old cupcakes. All washed down with pots of English tea (little fingers in the air please!). The prices include china hire, cutlery, staff and linens.
Dani finds inspiration for her menus from old recipe books such as Mrs Beeton’s Cookbook that was her great grandmothers. She tailors bespoke menus to client’s taste and style and she uses Pinterest for ideas. “I love using traditional recipes, but use modern techniques and design to make them current” says Dani.
Her crockery collection has become a bit of an obsession, with individual pieces sourced from vintage markets, charity shops and car boot sales; they can easily accommodate 150 covers and the collection is ever-growing.
It’s possible to just hire the china, if you’ve already got your catering sorted, or why not ask Dani to provide a vintage cake table as an alternative to dessert or traditional wedding cake? Fully styled with beautiful linens and props, and laden with traditional, home-made delights.
As well as the vintage china and props we’ve already mentioned, The Icing on the Cake, can provide vintage glassware, bunting, fairy lights and chalk boards.