Behind The Blue Door

Afternoon Tea | January 13, 2016 |

All in the detail:

how to turn your afternoon tea party into Instagram gold

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The secret to capturing seriously mouthwatering food photos is not a skill you can master overnight. That is, after all, why photographers get paid to do it.

But with a few tricks of the trade you can certainly grab a decent shot of your afternoon tea – wedding photographer and blogger Amy Louise Roy shared a few professional secrets with us.

The set up

The difference is less about your camera – or the moment you click the button – and more about what you do before you even begin to frame the shot.

Amy explains: ‘“Beautifully presenting your spread is crucial. I like to mix up textures such as rustic wood blocks, metallics and floral elements – roses add the perfect touch of quintessential Britishness.”’

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Image source: AmyLouPhotography/Website

The lighting

‘“Natural lighting always works best for food photography, as it looks believable and delicately accentuates the main features”’ says Amy, “’Showcase your fine bone china and nibbles on a clean spread and always keep it simple – not over-cluttering the shot is so important.”’

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Image source: AmyLouPhotography/Website

The chinaware

There are no rules when it comes to contemporary afternoon tea – and personal expression is what makes the occasion uniquely stylish. However, there are a few little luxuries that will elevate your table setting:

  • A statement teapot. Try this Daisy Tea Story teapot, with soft floral blooms and classical borders
  • Selection of fine china teacups and saucers
  • Cake slices for serving
  • A tiered cake stand. The delicate apricot pink of this Cuckoo three-tier cake stand is the perfect foil for tea-time treats
  • Fresh flowers. Displayed in conventional vases or tumbled into jugs, jars or teacups, even a few garden blooms will lift the composition.
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Image source: AmyLouPhotography/Website

The composition

Amy says the table accents aren’’t always obvious in her photos: ‘“The star of afternoon tea is the elegant teaware and fine foods – so while styling a spread with candles and floral arrangements enhances the atmosphere, they shouldn’’t be in the limelight.

‘“I use a technique called ‘bokeh’, when some of the image is blurry and out of focus, which makes a huge difference. It gives soft, subtle hints of the backdrop and focuses on the tea set – and you can do it on an iPhone.”’

Once your table is styled, get creative by taking photos of you and your guests enjoying the fruits of your display. Whether it’’s your frangipane tart being served or a friend taking a bite out of a lemony crab and cucumber sandwich, that’’s what it’’s all about.

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Image source: AmyLouPhotography/Website

That’s the photography sorted – but what to bake? It’s all about the choux.

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