A Summer Tea Outing

This past week I enjoyed a special tea with two dear friends. A summer afternoon was spent having tea at the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores, Michigan. This summer they have a special exhibit of the wedding gowns from several generations of the Ford family brides.


The Gate House to Edsel and Eleanor Ford House

The tea was held in the Cotswald Cafe within the Visitor Center.fordcotswald

While waiting in the lobby, I had a pleasant surprise, Phyllis from The Relevant Tea Leaf arrived with her lovely daughter Lori who took our photo. A coincidence was that Phyllis and I were wearing similar tops. As they say “great minds think alike.”


Jill & Phyllis

We then went to our respective tables to be served a new-to-me brand of tea, “Tea Forte.”


Perhaps some of the tea connoisseurs are familiar with this brand. I chose the English Breakfast as did my friend who is British. She much prefers the classic teas over the herbal or flavored ones.

The tea comes cleverly packaged and when opened it is in its own diffuser.


The tea caddy was full of savories which we found satisfying. My English friend noted that cream/milk and lemon were not served with the tea as is proper.


Following our hour-long chat while we sipped tea and nibbled on finger foods, we went to the South Cottage (within the Gate House) and viewed the wedding gowns from several generations of the Ford Family brides. Oh my, they were beautiful. A plethora of satin, beads and European lace.


Back View of the Gate House

Eleanor Hudson married Edsel Ford (son of Henry Ford) in 1916, thus the name of the summer-long exhibit, A Century of Love.  While using my phone camera, it was difficult to get decent photos of the full gowns. Therefore, I will show close-ups of gowns in order for you to see the exquisite details. It was interesting to note that some Ford brides chose classic gowns and some chose wedding dresses from their era. As we were visiting the exhibit near closing time, I did not properly identify the gowns with the bride. We were also sidetracked and in awe of the beautiful dresses. My apologizes. Since my original post it has come to my attention that the last gown I featured belonged to Elizabeth Ford Kontulis. 


Wedding Gown of Eleanor Hudson Ford ~ 1916



Bridesmaid Gown from Eleanor’s 1916 Wedding







Elizabeth Hudson Ford Kontulis ~ 1987 Wedding


The display card noted that the lace bodice was imported from Europe and chosen by an historian.

It was a delightful July afternoon which included friends, tea, beads, satin and lace. To see more and/or different photos, please visit Phyllis at Relevant Tea Leaf as she will also soon do a post regarding her tea at the Ford House.

Should you be in the Metro Detroit area this summer and/or in the future, I highly recommend visiting the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House which is open to the public. The grounds are lovely and the house is beautiful although we did not tour house on this tea visit.

Sharing my tea outing with





Some Favorites

While ‘thrifting’ this spring and summer, I have found a few pretty cups and saucers. Then I realized they needed to be properly displayed so I could enjoy my vintage purchases. As you can see, I favor the cups with an interior design.

Aynsley Pansy; Coalport; Paragon Queen Elizabeth Coronation

This goes along with my ongoing reorganizing process. While recently writing posts, I realized that some of my dish-related favorites were not readily accessible. Time to change that. Cups, saucers and plates were unwrapped from their tissue paper and put on display in a vintage cabinet. I think I have a problem. However, in regards to the KonMari Method of decluttering, they all ‘spark joy’ so they will be happy to stay.


It has been a busy summer week which has included thrifting and planning a tea outing with friends. This week I shall be attending an afternoon tea at the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House as in the Ford automotive fame. Below photo from their website.


Soon I shall post about the afternoon tea details at the Ford Estate.

Recently I was a fortunate recipient of a generous giveaway by one of my favorite bloggers, Linda, at “More Fun Less Laundry.” If you have not yet visited Linda and when you are not laundering, I highly recommend you peak at her charming blog. With her wonderful photos and descriptive prose, it is easy to imagine that you are on one of her fun adventures or enjoying a homemade treat at one of her cleverly decorated tablescapes.

Yesterday, the giveaway (a Bean Bag as they are called on the East Coast) arrived from LL Bean. Can a canvas tote bag be considered pretty? Yes, if it has one’s initials nicely monogramed in a pretty color. Not only is it pretty, but it is practical and functional. Soon it will be traveling with me on a lavender-picking adventure. Thanks Linda!


Sharing this week with my favorite tea party hostesses:

Have a nice week,

October Rose




Red, White & Blue

This week was easy for choosing a theme for tea. Instead of fancy teacups and china, all white everyday dinnerware is featured on a vintage soft cotton red check tablecloth.


The blue plays its role in the form of fresh blueberries served with blueberry yogurt. Too early for Michigan blueberries, but these are sweet and USA grown.


Instead of hot tea, we shall drink ice tea in what is sometimes called a ‘boopie glasses’ (balls on the feet). It may look like an amber ale in the vintage glass tumbler, but it is ice tea. Really.


The dinnerware was purchased last year from Crate and Barrel. Previously over the years, I always used different patterns of Corelle. Time for change. Today, I dressed it up with all white dessert plates (open work edge) that were purchased from Pier One as is the berry bowl. A positive thing about all white is that it is easily accessorized even with other brands. Inexpensive paper lace doilies were added. In my humble opinion the doilies do add interest and are a quick and easy accessory.


As you approach my front door, you will be greeted by a red, white and blue flower bed. The classic combination of these colors displays nicely from the street.


For a few days, the patriotic them was forming in my mind. Then I walked into LaBelle’s Antiques and was further inspired by this display.


Happy to share with Antiques and Teacups, Bernideen’s, Martha’s Favorites and Rose Chintz Cottage.

May the American bloggers have a safe, happy holiday. Thank you to our friendly Canadian neighbors who have recently celebrated their independence. On July 14th, France will have their spectacular fireworks show on Bastille Day.  France is on my mind because I will be traveling there in September for the first time. I plan on sharing a tea outing and macraons.