Vintage Summer Fun Part 4 Granny’s China Cupboard
As a 100% coffee drinker, it is rare I drink tea, but I admit, I do love an afternoon tea. There’s something so decadent about sitting at a beautiful table, sipping tea, eating cake and just enjoying a lazy afternoon. Sadly, my kitchen doesn’t really have space for a beautiful tea set, that is where Granny’s China Cupboard comes in.
Created by Vicky 2 years ago, she offers a beautiful selection of vintage china available for hire for all sorts of events. She was even awarded Wedding Supplier Newcomer of 2017. When she invited me round for afternoon tea, I wasn’t going to miss that!
So what sort of events do you hire your china out to?
Weddings mainly, although family gatherings, christening etc, are very popular. Really any event where they would like some beautiful china with a vintage twist.
Any particularly unusual events?
A few Alice in Wonderlands parties. In a couple weeks time, I’m doing a vintage teddy bear afternoon tea. Each little girl is going to ‘adopt a bear’ and then have afternoon tea with her new teddy. Because I’m a big fan of reusing and refurbishing items so they don’t go to landfills, I rescued lots of beautiful bears at charity shops, given them a wash and repaired them before their tea party. There’ll be cakes, tea and mocktails and snacks for teddy of course.
You upcycle and reuse lots of beautiful pieces, do you make any yourself?
My husband and I make cake stands, signs, we rescue logs to make centrepieces, recycle step ladders for displays, but mainly it’s suitcases. I’ve painted them, lined with them maps and filled with flowers, they look amazing. I have a project at the moment with old books, but it’s a secret, you’ll have to watch the Facebook page to see what happens to them.
So where did your love of china come from?
My love of china comes my gran, therefore the name. She was a feisty cockney woman, she was a force to be reckoned with at 4ft8. She had a parlour that no one was allowed to go in, except me. I used to go in and get her china out of a special cabinet. I would play with her special china that I would use for dolls tea parties. Over the years, I started collecting my own pieces, the collection just grew!
You do have quite a collection.
We have a have a HUGE collection of vintage china and accessories. But if I don’t have something a couple particular wants, I’m always happy to go out and find just the right piece.
How old is your collection?
Most of it is from the 1940s upwards. I do have some china from 1910, 1920, but it doesn’t travel that well.
Are there any pieces you truly love?
I have two teacups which are pink with a gold ring and beautiful pink flowers inside. I love them, they are so pretty. If I have a special couple, I will lend them out, I feel like a proud mama when I have special pieces go out to parties.
So what do I need for the perfect tea party?
Beautiful china, gorgeous flowers, delicious cakes, ironed linen, pretty crockery, and somewhere nice to enjoy it all.
How do you mix and match your place settings so they look so beautiful?
I think it’s luck! By putting it together, a huge rainbow of colours, it looks beautiful.
Milk or tea first?
I always put tea in first, then milk. Apparently, there is some science about which order you should do it in, but for me, it’s always tea first.
Cucumber sandwiches without the crust (I never eat the crusts) and without the skin on cucumber. You have to peel the cucumber to do it nicely as the ride is quite tough.
Do you save your nice china for when the Queen visits or use it every day?
Funny you should mention the Queen, my china is off to Windsor Castle next month! I have a couple who are getting married at the same chapel as Harry and Meghan, so who knows, maybe the Queen will stop by and have a cup of tea with them.
But everyone should enjoy their china, it doesn’t need to be saved just for the Queen.
How has photography impacted your business?
It’s amazing, sometimes you’ll just have one beautiful photo you put on social media and everything will go nuts! Beautiful photos can help so many people find your business, it makes such a difference.
What’s your motto in life?
I had a poster of it made; stay humble, work hard, be kind.
Why not visit the Lotus Photography stand at Poole Goes Vintage on Sunday 15th July, not only will I be offering mini vintage inspired photo shoot, but there will be beautiful vintage china from Granny’s China Cupboard on display.