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The timing was right… It was Rosanna’s 8th Annual Tablescape Contest, my daughter-in-law’s birthday, and I was finally healed enough to tackle an ambitious baking event. What better way to celebrate all three than with a Dessert Tea!

1 Dessert Table

Dessert Tea table setting

Here is the table before I started adding all the desserts. I made the tablecloth from an old bedspread with fringed edge. (You can see scraps from that old tattered bedspread in the photos of Tea by the Sea. Crafters don’t waste any scrap. Ha!)

I adore Rosanna’s style and was hoping to enter her 2013 tablescape contest last summer. But we didn’t get the remodel done in time and I wasn’t very mobile back then. The china cabinet was emptied so we could move it around and all the china was stacked on two tables in the living room. That’s when I got the idea for a blue and white and yellow theme for a table.

This year, I thought about the Dessert Table theme for weeks. Each time I got an idea, I added it to my notes.
2 Dessert Tea notes

4 Dessert Tea Centerpiece

Four elegant mugs on a dessert pedestal hold the floral centerpiece.

After I decided on the serving dishes, I wrote a list of tasks, desserts and a tentative baking schedule.
3 Dessert Tea schedule
There were two main focal points for the table, Rosanna’s elegant Luxe Moderne mugs for the centerpiece, and her La Mode fashion plates.
I used four of Rosanna’s mugs on a vintage dessert pedestal to make the centerpiece. I was so excited about this design. It has a lot of potential and I plan on using four mugs as a centerpiece base for other tablescapes.

Sugar cookies were painted following Rosanna’s designs on her mugs. I wrote about the cookies here. It was challenging to paint the designs! I have new respect for Rosanna’s design skill.
5 Gilded dress cookies
The fashion plates are so pretty!
6 Rosanna Inc La Mode plates

7 Napkins hung like little dresses

These are not dresses, they are napkins! Small squares of fabric folded are diagonally and draped over a miniature hanger. A bit of ribbon and trim… and you have sweet petite dresses!

9 Tiered server with various trays

This server was made to accommodate round plates. But rectangle platters made for more interest.

This tiered server used to be bright red, yellow and blue but I painted it all white with acrylic paint. Instead of using round plates on the server, I used two rectangle trays on the bottom. It looked great!

12 Layered desserts

Dessert Tea – Layered Desserts with Vanilla Bean Cake, Raspberry Mousse and Orange Gelatin with Raspberry and Mandarin Orange Slice.

To continue the fashion theme, I cut 6″ to 8″ squares of fabric for petite tea napkins and fringed the edges. Each napkin was folded and draped over hangers to look like dresses. Most were folded diagonally. Each was tied at the “waist” with ribbon, a little flower tucked in the waist and a small piece of trim was draped over the top to look like a collar.

I made the miniature hangers from pieces of coat hanger cut with wire cutters. One coat hanger made three miniature hangers. The metal cake stand was perfect from which to hang the napkin dresses.
8 Little coat hangers

The tea service was on the back of the table, behind the desserts. I wrote how I made the Sugar Bonnets here.
10 Dessert Tea tea service
On the tiered server, top to bottom: Spritz, squares of Fudge and Shortbread, Butter Cookie Dresses.
11 Dessert on three tiers
I experimented with a new baking pan to make the Layered Desserts. They were delicious and so pretty! I will post the recipe some time.

The Layered Desserts looked perfect on the long rectangular tray.
13 Layered desserts
I also made a Lemon Orange Cheesecake topped with Pineapple and a Marmalade Glaze. So delicious!
14 Pineapple Orange Cheesecake

16 Cherry Tarts

Dessert Tea – I didn’t have time to make round pastry shells. It was quick and easy to cut squares with a pizza cutter and place the pie pastry in the tart pan.

19 Dessert table

Dessert Tea – a table set with a delicious assortment of desserts: Layered Desserts, White Chocolate Praline Cake, Pineapple Marmalade Cheesecake, Cherry Tarts, Spritz Cookies, Fudge, Scottish Shortbread, Butter Dress Cookies, Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel Macadamia Frosting, Honeydew Melon Balls with Blueberries and a bowl of Cherries.

20 Fabric napkin folded to look like a dress on a hanger

Dessert Tea – napkins folded diagonally and hung on a miniature hanger, tied with ribbon and draped with lace.

Two bowls held Honeydew Melon balls and Blueberries and Cherries, garnished with fresh mint.
15 Fresh cherries honeydew melon and blueberries
Cherry Tarts were on a glass dish.

I only had four covered glass dishes but that was enough to place four Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel and Macadamia Frosting.
17 Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel Macadamia Frosting
The birthday cake was a White Chocolate Praline Cake with homemade Strawberry Raspberry Jam topping.
18 White Chocolate Praline Cake
All together, the table looked lovely and the event was a huge success!

I submitted my photos and won an honorable mention in the tablescape contest… happy face! =)
My daughter-in-law was thrilled with her birthday, the girls loved the dress napkins and all our guests enjoyed the delicious desserts.
And it was the perfect event to celebrate the return of my health and stamina after such a long recovery. A sweet day indeed!