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Come for Tea

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I’m making a tea cozy.  Or a tea cosy, as the Brits would say.  Its history begins when tea was first introduced to Britain in the 1660s.  I like the word cosy – it’s much more dignified than cozy.  This time last week I didn’t even know I needed a tea cosy and just a few years ago, I would’ve said, “A tea what?”

Now I’m a good Southern girl that grew up drinking iced tea – sweet, of course.  My Aunt Doris introduced me to a ‘spot’ of hot tea when I was a teenager.  And I’ve enjoyed afternoon tea at an upscale hotel restaurant.  But I didn’t expect that inviting my out-of-town college girlfriends to join me for afternoon tea would lead to searching through my stash of fabric and learning how to sew a tea cosy.

My friends responded eagerly by email and June agreed to serve as hostess  – she’s my tea party authority.  My friends insisted that they bring the food: cucumber sandwiches, asparagus roll-ups, ham tarts, cranberry scones, and stuffed strawberries.  Fine with me.  I’ll provide the tea and hot water.  But June said we must use good loose tea and she knows exactly where to buy it.  So it seems that hot water is my only contribution to my tea party.

I don’t have a fancy silver tea service, which includes a teapot for keeping water at perfect hot tea temperature.  But I do have teapots.  One that matches my very first set of china.  One that a family friend gave me when I was ten years old.  And one that my brother-in-law bought and brought to me all the way from China.  A real teapot with a loose-leaf strainer and four dainty teacups.  So I’m set or so I thought.

June agreed that the idea of several lovely teapots would be wonderful.  “But how will we keep the water hot?  I wish we had a tea cosy or two,” she wrote in an email.  I think my microwave heats water pretty fast, but since all I’m providing is hot water, I must follow tradition.

A tea cosy is a knitted or embroidered covering (I don’t have time to knit or embroider) or it’s made from heavy brocade or fabric with a lovely design, and it must be insulated and lined.  It fits right over a teapot.  Got it!  A piece of printed floral cotton material that I inherited from my mother’s scrap fabric box.  And for some reason I’ve saved an unused insulated fabric leg covering from when I had knee surgery.  And there’s plenty of solid colored material for lining.

How could I possibility serve hot tea without tea cosies?  One for each of my three teapots.   The tea cosy was invented not only to keep the contents of the teapot hot, but also to prolong social occasions.  And I want to keep my long-time friends sitting around my dining room table as long as possible.

One cosy made.  Two to go.

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2 Responses

  1. Love this one! I like hot tea and the traditions that surround it.

    Like

  2. Thanks for commenting! The tea time with friends was perfect. We ate, drank, and sat around the table for 2 hours talking and laughing.

    Like

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