How a T-shirt Inspired a Tea Party
Minty has an August birthday which means every year we celebrate with a party in France. Lucky girl you may think – but no. Even though she gets to choose from some of the best cakes in the world at the local patisserie this is never enough to get over her feelings of sadness at not sharing her special day with her girlfriends.
Her attempts to have a full on fancy dress Alice in Wonderland party this year fell flat when no one dressed up – hard to bring a Mad Hatter’s costume on holiday when we travel with one suitcase for the entire family! Even a trip to the Haribo factory and all the candy we could carry to decorate her cake didn’t help. Perhaps the most fun she had was making Alice and the White Rabbit out of marzipan.
So this year she was promised a belated party with her friends when we returned to Los Angeles. Inspired by her favorite Harajuku T-shirt and the G perfume given to her by John and Geraldine she came up a plan and like her mummy, she had a definite idea about what was going to be needed to have optimum fun. This was an easy party to organize and so much fun.
The girls were asked to come dressed in their own Harajuku outfits, the invitation read:
Come dressed in your best Harajuku Tokoyo Street Fashion -
bright colored tees, frou frou skirts,
long socks or striped tights
We will do our hair and make-up
eat sushi and Japanese treats
decorate cute cupcakes
and sip tea
Guests arrived in full on ab fab outfits – these fashionistas knew what was expected and didn’t let the birthday girl down. Each expressed their own style in different ways and with a range of colors. They all dissapeared into Minty’s boudoir to do hair and make up together. I had been downtown to the fashion district and bought a selection of flowers, pompom hair bands, giant sequin bows, scarves, necklaces and make-up. The best part for me was watching them transform themselves amid giggles and wide eyed amazement at how many things they could put in their hair. “My head is a garden!” said Angel as she added yet another sparkly rose. ”You look so pretty,” said G. “Pink, blue or silver sparkles?” They got to take home all that adorned their heads, faces and bodies – including their own make-up set of shimmery pastel colors.
I managed to get chocolate pop rocks and special yellow candies that you eat the entire wrapper from Waylynn Lucas, Pastry Chef at The Bazaar at SLS, and chocolate chip cookies baked by Sherry Yard, Pastry Chef at Spago, at the Taste of Beverly Hills event on Thursday. Thank you to my friends and fellow party goers Sam Kim, e*starLA and Lindsay William Ross of LAist for helping to fill my bag with cookies and candies. It certainly added more than sugar and sparkles to the already sophisticated event.
Minty vetoed my cucumber sandwich suggestion and insisted on avocado and salmon sushi, rainbow rolls and Rémy put in a request for avocado rolls (which he seemed to eat all by himself before the girls got a look in!). Since it was her birthday, Minty then persuaded me to get her white rice rather than the usual brown.
Tiny pale orange citrus meringues and pink cookies in little white bowls were placed around the table along with glasses of long vanilla filled stick cookies.
For the table Minty chose pink and orange gerbera flowers, branches of white blossoms and hot pink cups. Each white plate was stacked with candy sticks to look like chopsticks with bees and ladybugs, and little individual plastic tumblers with the pop-rocks.
The night before I made the cake – G – of course. Minty watched as I molded the fondant, she was curious about the use of alcohol to stick the pieces together and how I used sparkle gel to accent and tweezers to get the tiniest details in the right place. She asked to use the left-over fondant when I went to tennis and that night when I returned I was blown away to find not one Harajuku girl but all five – and not just the head but the whole figure with outfit. Talented pastry chef in the making? Next year she can make her own cake!
The Harajuku Girls drank cocktails of tangerine and lime flavored fizzy water with black boba balls we picked up for $1 at the sushi shop next door to Domaine LA where Mummy was getting some much needed rosé – MIP a new favorite. [The next morning Minty dressed up again and had the left over boba for breakfast.]
After all the sushi and sugar it was time to party! Dancing to Lady Gaga, Abba and No Doubt it was a high-energy adrenaline filled love in – with lots of tulle, glitter, flowers, bows, jewels, sequins, fishnets and disco lights. Rémy put in the odd appearance for some much-needed testosterone break dancing, dressed as a Harajuku boy in white t-shirt, skinny jeans and hat. He was also a great help with lighting and as resident DJ, always ready to pump up the volume. The dance party soon turned into a full on rocking out band practice – G on vocals, Angel as backing dancer and Music and Angel on guitars all singing “I’m Just a Girl” – Baby was much missed, she had to depart early to go to another engagement.
After a little break to do some painting and some wise words from Angel ‘You can never make a mistake in art’ it was time for more sugar!
Jelly and Mochi
At Ladles and Jellyspoons we love our Jelly – and for the party we discovered a new trick: We made the jelly using one large packet of raspberry Jell-O and a bag of frozen organic raspberries from Trader Joes. By putting the frozen berries into the hot liquid that is needed to dissolve the powder the jelly set in less than an hour in the refrigerator. When we were ready to eat it I heated the bowl in hot water for a minute to loosen it and bravely flipped it over onto the plate – et voila a perfect jiggling jelly.
Note to self: I need to look into interesting jelly molds – and still hunting for jellyspoons!
Quick Set Raspberry Jelly
One 6 oz packet of raspberry Jell-O
One bag of Trader Joes organic frozen raspberries
2 cups water – boiling
What to do:
1. In a medium bowl stir the boiling water into gelatin for about 2 minutes until completely dissolved.
2. Add bag of frozen raspberries and stir as the liquid starts to thicken.
3. Transfer to mold and refrigerate until firm – about an hour.
4. Once set place mold in hot water for about a minute to loosen then flip onto serving platter.