Since the first day I met Kelly, I knew she loved the sea. She’s her happiest when her toes are in the sand and the salty ocean air is smacking her in the face. So it was a no-brainer for her Brides Mates that we would create a Nautical Themed Kitchen Tea. Now, if we lived in sunny Durban, or even Cape Town, this would’ve been a breeze (see what I did there). But we live in Joburg, there is no sea in sight, so creativity became our best friend. I’m going to run you through all the tips and tricks we used to create the best kitchen tea that we could, sans the sea.
Pinterest became our best friend during this process. I created a Pinterest board, and after having to teach the girls how to use it, we were all able to share ideas. We spent a good few months curating ideas that we individually loved, and then met to decide which we were going for. Here are a few of the little DIY’s that we did.
The anchor was made by Kelly’s father in law, which we were so so lucky to have. Her sister in law Nikki brought paint markers so that each person could sign the anchor on the day.
Obviously we couldn’t get real crabs for the day, plus they freak me out, so off to Pinterest to figure something out. Vicks found the cutest picture of a crab made from a lantern, and so the creation of Connor the Crab. We used a red paper lantern, stuck on googly eyes and used glittery red pipe cleaners to create the legs.
Bunting was an awesomely easy, and cost effective way for us to decorate around the garden. Printing out the letters individually on the computer and then cutting them our and sticking them directly to the bunting. We wanted to add a little flair, so Nadine began her origami skills. She created the cutest little boats that we were able to hang around the garden. We cut little holes onto the middle of the boats and tied a little knot in the twine. We were then able to hang each boat at different levels.
The little details really added something to the day. We bought apple sour belts and labeled them as seaweed. Vicks baked chocolate chip cookies and labeled them “chips ahoy” cookies. We then also had a bowl of sour worms as “fishing bait”. We also had a donut wall with a bunch of different toppings which was an absolute hit.
I’m a strong believer that guests shouldn’t leave empty handed. I feel like it always leaves such a lasting impression if you’re sent home with something to remember the day. Kelly’s mother-in-law is an incredible crafter, so she customised a cupcake stand for the day. Each guest was able to take a cupcake home in a little box to say thank you.
Obviously a themed kitchen tea calls for outfits. Along their travels, the girls found some epic hats for all of us. They also found a bunch of inappropriate props that I wont mention here. We each bought long sleeve navy shirts and white slip ons. We then called in the help of Louis from Oui Creations who designed our incredibly cool shirts for us. He also designed a personalised one for the bride. Not to mention each of the mom’s also got one. We then headed to On The Mark who helped us to actually make the shirts into a reality. Nadine “queen of DIY” handmade a tutu for Kell and wham bam thank you ma’am, she was ready to party.
Getting The Family Involved
It must be said, that none of this would’ve been possible if we hadn’t had some help. Kelly’s dad and step mom graciously let us use their home for the day. Kell’s mom also collected every little nautical themed decoration she could throughout the year. Come kitchen tea day, we were able to deck out the tables with little trinkets. We were so grateful for all the help from the parents, and I personally think they loved being involved as well.