Move over, all you fancy tea time dressers, your tea time fashion is about to get a tad…uh…unexpected! Set aside those flower-patterned dresses, white cotton gloves, and wide-brimmed hats with lace veils. Set aside, too, those neckties, you guys, and those business suits. A very different approach is needed here.
Tea Dueler Fashion
Take, for example, the tea phenomenon that intrepid tea guy Bill Lengeman reported on recently (The Fine Art of Tea Dueling) where a style of dress called “steam punk” (loosely based on Victorian fashions) is the wardrobe of choice of many participants (but not a requirement, so they tell me). Note the various styles of hats being worn by tea duelers. Generally, a gentleman removes his hat indoors and in the presence of ladies, but hey, it’s steam punk!
In the Great Outdoors
You can, of course, enjoy tea just about anywhere, and therefore in just about any attire. So a hike or camping trip (such as the one blog contributor May King Tsang wrote about here) is certainly no preclusion to enjoying tea.
On the Job
The same goes for any other task. Whether you’re a car mechanic in greasy coveralls, a doorman in a spiffy uniform at the Ritz, the best ever nail salon gal in your smock, or even someone in rolled up shirt sleeves and wearing a “I gotta have tea” look on your face, no need to stop and change for tea time. Steep it up and enjoy!
Posh Tea Princess
Then, of course, there are us Tea Princesses who can go totally out there.
Or dainty yet bold.
More formal teas:
You’re seeing the trend here, I’m sure. Be yourself and let the tea be the key focus. You might even want to pair your tea to your fashion.
- Buckingham Palace Garden Party — Intriguing hints of high-grown pure Ceylon Earl Grey, soft jasmine from Fujian Province, malty Borengajuli Assam, flavory Dimbula Ceylon (from Hatton), and the brisk and golden cup East of Rift Kenya (from Kambaa and Kagwe).
- Taylors of Harrogate China Rose Petal — In China, this classic Orange Pekoe scented tea is known as “rose congou”. A large leaf black tea which takes its flavor from the addition of rose petals stirred into the tea as it dries.
More casual teas:
- Darjeeling Tea — The fragrance and taste are a complex bouquet of flavors, from nutty, to a blackcurrant-like taste, but most often described as similar to muscat grapes.
- Lapsang Souchong China Black Tea — A distinctive flavor and heady aroma of a camp fire. Depending upon one’s palate the taste can be light and intriguing or heavy and overpowering.
Teas for that workday break:
- Irish Breakfast — Delivers a good, strong cuppa! Created from malty Assam teas from North Eastern India, and commonly mixed with a little milk and sugar.
- Izu Matcha Japanese Tea — One of the most famous teas in the world and used in the Japanese tea ceremony for centuries. This tea is a high quality Japanese Matcha grown in the Izu peninsula near Tokyo.
Whatever you’re doing, no matter what you’re wearing, stop! It’s tea time!
See more of A.C. Cargill’s articles here.
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