September 21st was a very big day! Katie’s brand Summer Tales Boutique (previously known as Fly Away Fashion) celebrated its five year anniversary with a big tea party! The theme was ‘A tale of sorcery and magic’, so basically anything magical or mysterious!
A week or two in advance, I received an email from Katie. She said her usual photographer unfortunately couldn’t make it and she asked whether I wanted to be the photographer for the day. I was so happy and honoured that of course I said yes!
Since I would be taking pictures of everyone I decided not to try and participate in the outfit contest. Nevertheless I wanted to wear a pretty outfit of course. During the days before the tea party I formed an idea in my head: I wanted to create a flowery, fairy-like look, but with a soft flowing tulle cape instead of wings (because I don’t have any, hihi). I tried out a hairstyle with my new flower head piece that I bought from Dreamy Bows (you can read about it here if you want), which initially didn’t work out like I planned it. But eventually, I found a style I liked and which was fairly easy to recreate on the day of the party itself. The cape I started making the day before the party, which was a little stupid of me, but I managed to finish it in time. This was my outfit, I hope you like it: ^^
✿ Jewelry Flower Fairy ✿
My outfit rundown:
Flowers and bows: Dreamy Bows, Claire’s and offbrand
Blouse: Baby, the Stars Shine Bright
Dress: Angelic Pretty’s Jewelry Jelly
Tights: Summer Tales Boutique
Ear rings: Paris Kid’s
Necklace: Angelic Pretty
Bracelets and bangles: Angelic Pretty, Chocomint and offbrand
Bag: Dreamy Bows
You can’t see it very well on the pictures, but I had sewn multiple little pink hearts onto the tulle of the cape. It looked quite cute! ^^
I left my home quite early in comparison to most of the other guests. I would travel together with my friend Cat and since she would be modelling one of Katie’s dresses in the fashion show, she had to be there early. So I decided to join her. ^^
We arrived in Utrecht and walked through the city to our destination. The Tea Party would take place in ‘De Winkel van Sinkel’, which means ‘Sinkel’s shop’. I don’t think it comes as a surprise to you that I thought it was an actual shop, with maybe an extra conference room or something, but it turned out to be a huge restaurant with at least three big party rooms!
When we arrived, we had a little trouble communicating to the staff who we were and why were there (since the place was still closed for guests), but eventually they understood us and we were allowed in. We went up the stairs and walked into a the room on our right. There, my eyes widened and my jaw dropped. It was a truly gorgeous place! The walls were bright red, there were amazing chandeliers on the beautiful ceiling and the windows on the right had a wonderful view over the shopping streets and canal below and the Domtower. I had walked past de Winkel van Sinkel before, but never had I expected such an awesome place was hidden inside!
The amazing party location!
Katie, Katie’s mom, Ruben and Mai were already there and were busy setting things up. Mai and Ruben were putting the food they had made onto two tables and it looked very promising! There were macarons, little cakes, chocolates… I was eager to try some later! :3
Mai and Ruben setting up the delicious food.
Since the other models hadn’t arrived yet, Cat and I helped set up chairs while admiring the details in the room. On both ends was another room that could be separated from the main room by doors. One would function as a Summer Tales Boutique pop up shop, while the other functioned as a dressing room for the models and later as a small gallery for Katie’s new original print. I was happy to be able to check out the goods at Katie shop, since later it would probably get really crowded. I took a look at the pop up shop. There were a lot of super cute goods. Besides the usual alpacas, there were also adorable Poteusa Loppys. Katie had also made macaron rosettas with colourful ribbons. I absolutely adored them, but I told myself not to buy anything this time.
Some pictures of the pop up shop.
Soon Anne, Renske, Sandy and a friend of hers arrived and the models started to get dressed. After the models got ready, I took outfit pictures of all of them. I took my photographer’s job very seriously. ^^ Three of the models were wearing Katie’s own creations, while the fourth wore an Innocent World jsk, which was sold in the store as well.
Cat was wearing the ‘Patisserie Paris’ jsk, combined with a long-sleeved blouse and cute brown shoes.
Sandy was wearing ‘Antique Cutlery’ by Innocent World, in a beautiful wine and white coord.
Renske was wearing the new ‘Macaron Dream’ jsk print in pink. I really loved Katie’s designs with this print, especially the skirts!
Anne was also wearing ‘Patisserie Paris’ in a very sweet outfit.
Katie had made herself a new dress only days before the tea party (so fast!), which had a bustle back with beautiful lace. She looked absolutely amazing! A true star. :3
Doesn’t Katie look fabulous in her beautiful dress?
While the models shortly practised their walks on the catwalk, the last things were set up. I managed to take some quick pictures of the hosts for the day, which was a good thing. The rest of the day were running around helping guests. ^^
Our magical party hosts! ☆
The guests were arriving, so the models hid in their dressing room. Since I was a guest myself, I didn’t need to hide, so I helped welcoming everyone, ate a ‘welcome cupcake’ and hugged all my friends. I was especially happy to see some of the Belgian Lolitas as well! It’s always so much fun when they join an event with the Dutch Lolitas. ^^
I took a good look at everyone’s outfit. We had fairies, witches, fairy tale princesses, Harry Potter-inspired outfits and even a magical forest creature! Everyone had really done their very best to create a pretty outfit.
Everyone sat down around the catwalk in the middle of the room and Katie welcomed everyone and explained the programme for the day. I was also introduced as the official photographer for the day, haha!
Katie welcoming the guests to the tea party.
The fashion show started and everyone got a good look at Katie’s new designs. I think it was a success. ^^
After the fashion show, the models got redressed into their own outfits and the pop up store opened. There was also a small bring and buy table, but the room instantly filled up with people, so I was glad I had checked the goods beforehand. I could always have another
We had also received a bingo card where we had to fill in names instead of numbers. This has become a big favourite at Lolita events, because it gives you the opportunity to get to know people when you’re new. ^^ Instead, I decided to drag people in turns to a well-lighted corner to start taking outfit pictures! I was finally able to snap a lot of people’s outfits, mainly because this time I had a good excuse! XD And everyone was looking so wonderful! Unfortunately, since there were over 50 people, I’m afraid I can’t post them all (it would be too much, even for me), so I will show you my absolute favourites throughout the rest of the post. ^^
Mai wearing a beautiful chocolate coord with amazing details.
Saltje in her beautiful, all handmade outfit.
Alexander and Kathleen in contra colours. Aren’t they the cutest couple ever!?
Josine as the Lolita personification of Snow White.
Dido in her gorgeous witch outfit. *swoon*
I didn’t only take separate outfit pictures, I actually took some duos and group pictures as well! I took my job very seriously! XD
So many pretty people! *o*
The buffet was opened and I picked out some delicious sweets. I sat at a table with some of my friends and had some tea with them. Looking back, I didn’t eat much at all, even though the sweets were really good! Stupid me. Oh well, I guess I was too excited. ^^
Lolitas having tea.
In the meantime, the room that had been the models’ dressing room had now been cleared and opened. While people were having tea, I took a look at Katie’s original print, designed by one of the attending guests. It comes in several colours and looks really cool!
Chef Ruben looking peacefully at the pictures and prints.
All the windows were open, which made for a nice cool breeze once in a while. Plus, it was utterly hilarious to stand in front of one of them or on one of the balconies and see whether people walking in the streets noticed us. Their reactions when they did were quite fascinating!
Evelien and Milo posing with the Domtower in the background. I love how different both girls’ styles are!
I continued my quest, asking everyone around me for pictures. I was so incredibly happy that the light- and colour circumstances were so amazing. About 90% of my pictures came out the way I wanted them, which is a very rare thing to happen. So I tried to take as many pictures as I could, I hope I wasn’t too annoying. XD
Eveline looked like a super cute magician.
Astrid wearing a beautiful black and dark blue coord.
Alexandra looked as if she had walked straight out of a magical forest.
Rowie always manages to look so elegant and refined.
Kathleen was kind enough to take some pictures of me as well and I really like them. ^^
It was amazing to see how everyone had not only incorporated the theme into their outfit, but also their own style. All the outfits were so different and unique!
Four pretty pastel princesses.
Dark ladies plus one Cinderella. ;)
In the meantime, the camera crew had arrived! Katie had been asked by the blog Refinery29.com whether they could film us and have some interviews with different people for their ‘Style Out There’ series, which features different clothing styles from all over the world. They would only film those that wanted to and they wouldn’t stay very long. Katie had asked all the guests whether they were ok with this (which I think was very professional of her) and after getting everyone’s approval, the crew had been invited. While me and my friends were having some drinks, we were joined by the host of the show: Asha Leo, a British fashion model and presenter now living in the USA. I had never heard of her before (I am not really on top of things in the fashion world), but it was actually a good thing, since it gave me and the other guests the opportunity to make up our minds about her ourselves. Well I can tell you, she is an absolute darling! She is kind, shows honest interest in what you tell her and she has a gorgeous British accent. :3
It was time for the bingo and the outfit contest. The six contestants walked up and down the catwalk and told us about their inspiration for their outfits. After that, we all got to vote.
Charlotte, Saltje, Alexandra, Sophie, Milo and Josine, showing their outfits.
And the winner was… Alexandra! Very well deserved, she looked stunning!
After the contest, it was time for the bingo. Unfortunately, I didn’t win anything, despite the positive energy Asha tried to send up to the Lolita gods, haha!
After the bingo, Saltje entered the stage with a big bouquet of flowers. A group of Lolitas, including me, had all chipped in thank Katie for all her hard work and amazing tea parties up until now. Katie was so happy! ^^
Then, it was time for the group picture! This turned out to be quite an adventure, since we were with so many people! We tried some things and eventually decided to take two: one in the hall next to the tea party room and one downstairs at the foot of the stairs. Thanks to self-timer, the first one came out pretty well! The second one was really hard, since not everyone fit into my frame. Luckily, one of the film crew members offered me to use his lens instead of my own, so everyone fit easily after all! ^^
Out of the two group pictures we took, this is my favourite. ♥
After the second group picture, I lingered with some girls downstairs to take some more pictures. After that, we went upstairs again. The tea party was slowly coming to an end. Since I was asked to be interviewed, I stuck around waiting while taking my last pictures. Luckily, there were more than enough people to take some nice ones. ^^
Gothics attacking Sweet, two beautiful Belgians and a cute couple enjoying the view.
I was very happy to see some men at the party, but I was even happier to see a girl in men’s style as well! I swear, we don’t have enough of time. They are such great picture material! And they look very pretty of course, I should have mentioned that first… ^^
It’s pictures like these that make my heart go ‘dokidoki’… ♥
It was my time to get interviewed, but since the room was too noisy, we decided to go outside. The sun was slowly setting, which created a nice atmosphere. I was a bit nervous about the interview: english is of course not my first language and even though I am confident with my language skills, suddenly the pressure took me a little. XD Luckily, it went fine. Asha was really nice and made me feel right at ease. When the camera crew was still adjusting the camera and sound, we joked about the fluffy microphone and decided to call it ‘Hammie’ from then on. The interview started and it was really nice. Asha asked good questions and I hope I answered them well. I am eager to see the result and will post a
Together with the wonderful Asha.
After the interview, I had to sign a form and all, so official! I think the crew enjoyed themselves that day. Asha even tweeted some things about her visit. ^^
One of Asha’s tweets. This picture actually came out really well!
Finally, it was time for me to go home. Contrary to what I usually I do, I got redressed (at the incredibly awesome-looking bathroom) and then went home with some girls. I took over 900 pictures that day, can you believe it!? I hope you don’t mind all the collages I made, hihi… ^^ But well, it had been a wonderful day filled with lots of fun, so how could I not post so many pictures? I hope you enjoyed this post! ☆