Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas

Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas | Want to throw an Alice in Wonderland / Mad Hatter Tea Party and need some inspiration for how to decorate it? Check out these great ideas!
Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas

I have been mentioning the anniversary party I was going to host for some friends of mine for a few weeks…well, it finally happened!But back to the beginning…both of my friends love to dress and love to wear hats. So I decided to go with the Mad Hatter Tea Party theme.

And this was definitely one of the most fun parties I have had in a long time.

Keep reading to see my Mad Hatter Tea Party ideas.

The Invitations

Alice in Wonderland Party Invitation | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Alice in Wonderland Party Invitation

Since this was an anniversary party, I sent out real printed invitations (which I almost never do!)I used my color printer to print these onto heavy paper stock and sent them in 6″ x 9″ envelopes…which definitely got everyone’s attention!

The Centerpieces

Pink Centerpiece Hat #1 | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Pink Centerpiece Hat #1

To go with the Mad Hatters Tea Party theme, I knew I wanted the table centerpieces to have something to do with hats.

Pink Centerpiece Hat #2 | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Pink Centerpiece Hat #2

I also knew that I wanted to go with bright colors – pink, purple, green and blue to tie in with the Alice in Wonderland theme.

The Blue Centerpiece Hat | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The Blue Centerpiece Hat

Combine those two ideas together and what do you get? Hats in different colors as the centerpieces.

Purple Centerpiece Hat | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Purple Centerpiece Hat

Now I have a confession to make…I really don’t like wearing hats…I only own one (that I bought on vacation and have never really worn). All that to say that I didn’t have any hats I could use for centerpieces, and I didn’t want to spend a lot of money buying hats that I would never use. That means…you guessed it…a DIY project.

Green Centerpiece Hat | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Green Centerpiece Hat

I didn’t go so far as to actually make the hats themselves (although if you’re interested in doing that, you can find the instructions here), but instead bought some inexpensive tall fabric hats from Party City. And then added ribbons, feathers and fake flowers to them to add the color. If you want to know more of the details, I’ll be posting a hat-decorating tutorial in the next couple of weeks.

To make them stand out on the table, I put the hats on top of 5 light candelabras* and used flame-less candles* to make sure nothing caught on fire.

The Tablecloths

I knew from the beginning that I wanted to use white and black table cloths. They would provide a unified backdrop for all of the tables, and make the colors stand out.I actually owned some black and white damask tablecloths that I had used for another party. But then I realized they wouldn’t work for the tables outside, since the umbrellas come up through the center of the table (and I didn’t want to cut holes in the middle of these tablecloths).

So I went hunting online for some really inexpensive ones and found these black and white leopard print tablecloths*. Perfect!

Cut off the corner of the folded tablecloth | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Cut off the corner of the folded tablecloth

To make them fit the outside tables, I simply folded them in quarters.

Tablecloth with corner cut off | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Tablecloth with corner cut off

Then cut off the corner where all of the quarters met.

The hole lets the umbrella fit through the tablecloth | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The hole lets the umbrella fit through the tablecloth

Unfold the tablecloth and the hole will be exactly in the middle. Then lay it down on your table and fit the umbrella through.

It also works really well outside, because the umbrella prevents them from blowing off the table.

The Table Settings

The Blue Table | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The Blue Table

Once I had the top hats, coming up with the table settings was easy.

The blue table setting | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The blue table setting

I wanted to do a different color for each of the tables so that the tableware matched the centerpiece hat.

The purple table | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The purple table

Then I used chargers, napkins, glasses and chair covers that matched the colors of the centerpieces.

Alice In Wonderland purple table setting | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Alice In Wonderland purple table setting

To prevent too much color overload, I used black and white plates.

The green table | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The green table

As you can see, I didn’t worry too much about having everything matching.

The green table setting | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The green table setting

The plates, chargers and water glasses were different across the tables.

The pink table | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The pink table

And then added a touch of one of the other colors to each table with the napkin rings. These are my DIY sparkle napkin rings in pink and green…click here if you want the instructions on how to make these (they’re really simple and really inexpensive!).

The pink table setting | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The pink table setting

The Umbrellas

Alice in Wonderland umbrellas | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Alice in Wonderland umbrellas

Since my party was being held in the summer, my original thought was to have the entire party outside. My house isn’t that big so hosting 50 people is much easier to do outside!

The green table and umbrella | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The green table and umbrella

But the problem was, in the summer in South Carolina, there is always a chance of evening thunderstorms rolling through that could completely ruin outdoor decor.

The blue table and umbrella | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The blue table and umbrella

So I thought I would set up a bunch of umbrellas that could at least prevent the tables from getting soaked.

The purple table and umbrella | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The purple table and umbrella

I ended up buying umbrella covers in the same colors as I was using for the table decor.

Alice In Wonderland Purple Table | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Alice in Wonderland purple table

But I thought I also needed some indoor decor just in case there was a real downpour…and was having a hard time figuring out what I wanted to do inside. Then I had a brainwave…why not just bring some of the umbrellas inside and make my living room into a continuation of the deck?

The pink table | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The pink table

It worked out better than I could have imagined! Everyone loved the indoor umbrellas, and I didn’t have to design another set of decorations 🙂

The Feather Vases

Pink and white feather vases | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Pink and white feather vases

To go along with the indoor tables, I also used some of my signature feather vases. Since I already own all the feathers and vases, they are an easy way to add drama to any space.

The Cheshire Cat

Cheshire cat | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Cheshire cat

Seeing as how I have 2 cats, I couldn’t have an Alice in Wonderland party without including the Cheshire Cat.

I hung these signs from the inside of the umbrellas so that he would look like he was floating.And I like the quote, too 🙂

The Roses

Red rose lights | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Red rose lights

To add some indoor rose bushes, I bought some red rose string lights and strung them through some candle trees* that I already owned.

Alice in wonderland umbrellas and red rose lights | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Alice in wonderland umbrellas with red rose lights

The candle trees provide the perfect entrance to the party…just like the rose bushes in the Queen of Hearts’ garden.

The Royal Croquet Court

The royal croquet court sign | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The royal croquet court sign

The Queen of Hearts was all about the Royal Croquet Court using flamingos as croquet sticks. So for outdoor entertainment, I set up a croquet court. I wasn’t sure how it would go over, but everyone really liked it! Something to keep on the “summer party” list.

Make Your Own Alice In Wonderland Croquet Set via blog.homedepot.com | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas

Make Your Own Alice In Wonderland Croquet Set via blog.homedepot.com

I saw this this great tutorial on homedepot.com from Amber Kemp-Gerstel of Damask Love for making your own pink flamingo croquet sticks, but didn’t actually have the time to try it…so I had to settle a regular croquet game and the sign.

The Tea Party Cake

The Mad Hatter Tea Party cake | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
The Mad Hatter Tea Party cake

What’s a tea party without a proper tea party cake? If you have read any of my other attempts at baking, you know that cake/cupcake decorating is not my strong point!So I decided in the interest of having a cake that people will actually want to eat, I should hire someone to make it (and actually, a good friend of mine took on the task of getting this done).

I am so glad that I did. The cake was so much better than I ever could have done…both in the looks and the taste department! (If you happen to live in the Greenville, SC area and want to know who made it…it came from Stax Bakery.)

The Drinks

Striped Jello Shots | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Striped Jello Shots

To go with the multi-colored Alice in Wonderland theme, I tried my hand at making striped jello shots. By far the most successful ones were the Pina Colada jello shots (you can find the recipe here)…but there were none left by the end of the evening so all of them went over well. Stay tuned for a future post on the other striped jello shot recipes (and the tips I have on how to make them turn out).

Berries and Lime Sangria | Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas
Berries and Lime Sangria

I also made my favorite summer party drink…Berries and Lime Sangria. It’s refreshing and low in alcohol…perfect for people who don’t want to drink too much….click here to get the recipe.

Have comments or questions about my Mad Hatter Tea Party Ideas? Tell us in the section below.


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