Saturday, April 24, 2010

afternoon tea- i mean, coffee- time

one of the things i miss about living in finland is the tradition of having coffee time in your home. coffee time is the same idea as the traditional english tea time, but the finns are much more fervent coffee drinkers than tea drinkers. i think i once heard somewhere that finns drink more coffee per person than any other country in the world. you would think that finnish coffee is superb with that kind of ranking, but i'm sorry to report that it's not. it's really not. in fact, it's closer to awful, and i assure you, i am not the only non-finn who will heartily agree. however, the tradition itself is lovely, and you always have the option of taking tea, and normally have an opportunity to have some kind of sweet or savory pastry.

for a weekend coffee time, my mother-in-law often makes quite a spread: perhaps a variety of little open-face sandwiches, maybe a sweet bread, a cake (sometimes two when it's a special occasion), and a selection of chocolates. it's a wonderful (and a delicious) way to pass an afternoon, talking and relaxing with friends and family.

since this tradition i miss so much is pretty absent in american culture, we decided to host a coffee time ourselves.  while we often go out to cafes, it had been quite a while since we had hosted a coffee time, so it was exciting (and a little agonizing) trying to pick out the right things to make.

the second best part of having a coffee time is that i get to pull out all our fun housewares. we use many of these items on a regular basis, but it's a rare occasion to have all of them out, plus those less used, special pieces out at once. it's like playing grown up! you may notice that our table top is pretty much a walking advertisement for finnish products. the finnish tourism board should hire me as a spokesperson. i would be such a great asset. although, there would be little sense in paying me for it, when i'm already doing it for free...right... anyway, a closer look at the details.

featuring: arabia arctica tea pot, iittala aino aalto drinking glass, iittala alvar aalto trivets, arabia ego pitcher, marimekko lumimarja table runner (made by my mother in law), iittala alvar aalto mini vases/bowls, pottery barn emma cake stand, iittala critterio cake lifter, marimekko unikko paper napkins, oneida icarus flatware, villeroy and boch serving trays, verso design flower felt coasters, arabia ego tea and coffee cups + plates, random cake carrying base

recipes to follow... another day.
i promise.
i mean, i'll try.


  1. Yum!! Is that a table runner you made? I love it!

  2. Two words:




  3. What a beautiful spread! And LOL I had to agree about the Finnish coffee. The one called President is quite bad. We did manage to get a good coffee at Fazer cafe though! :D

  4. I love it. I want to have coffee time at my house and i don't even like coffee. I could have tea time but I'm not a fan of tea either. Perhaps water time....or fruit drink time... or wine time...yes wine time.



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