What supplies do you need when you are planning your Chinese Wedding Tea Ceremony? Whether you’re planning an activity, a party or an event, one of the first things people usually think about is “what do we need?”. For activities, maybe there is equipment that needs to be bought, for a party or event, maybe food needs to be ordered or prepared in advance. Likewise, a Chinese wedding tea ceremony is also something that requires some preparation beforehand.
When you think about a wedding tea ceremony, certain things might pop into your mind like, teacups, tea pot, and of course tea. But other than those things, there are actually additional things like decoration and things to put into the teacups that are typically necessary for the ceremony. From the decorations to the actual tea leaves, here are some of the things that are needed for a Chinese wedding tea ceremony.
Beginning with decorations, it is important to have the Chinese character ‘double happiness’ either hanging on the wall, on pillows, or in other visible places. It is an important part as this character is a symbolism of weddings and is used as a blessing for the couple. Oftentimes these are in red, but there are also modern styles with different shades to choose from.
Another item that is part of decorations but will also be used are pillows. These pillows aren’t the typical pillows that are used for sleeping or cushions that are on the couch. Rather, they are pillows that are usually red and gold with auspicious chinese motifs printed or embroidered on. Some of these designs may include the double happiness sign, flowers, and sometimes even a cartoon version of a bride and groom.
The main purpose is to use these cushions for the bride and groom to kneel on, so usually only two will be needed. However, some families like to use these pillows on chairs as well as a decorative accent. Traditionally, when the bride and groom serve the tea, they need to be kneeling as this is a sign of respect and these pillows were necessary. However, in modern times, many families no longer require the bride and groom to kneel so these pillows have been used more for decorative purposes.
After you have all the decorative items, you will also need to prepare the items for the actual tea ceremony. For the slightly bigger items, you will need a tray to hold the teacups as the bride or groom is offering and serving the tea.
A teapot and teacups are the next items that are needed. There are tea sets that are specifically designed for Chinese wedding tea ceremonies and include both the pot and the cups. However, you can also create your own tea set by choosing your own teapot and teacups. It is preferable to use cups with the double happiness character on it or plain red cups.
An important thing to keep in mind is to avoid using white teapots or teacups. While these may be commonly used in Chinese restaurants, they are not suitable for a Chinese wedding tea ceremony. Other than the traditional ceramic teacups, another choice would be to use red paper cups which has proved to be a popular choice in recent years.
Lastly, the items that will be needed is what goes into the teacups. Traditionally the tea cups are not only filled with tea, but also with red dates and lotus seeds. Tea that is usually chosen are Pu’er, Tieguanying (Iron Bhudda), and even Jasmine Tea.
However, if you are in a pinch or you are unable to find any of these teas, we suggest using English Breakfast Tea. For the red dates and lotus seed, ensure that you buy the ones that are whole and not cut into pieces. These are to be placed in each tea cup to symbolize happiness, sweetness and well wishes to have children soon.
Having the decoration, the accessories and the type of tea prepared, you have everything needed for the Chinese wedding tea ceremony. To make it easier for you to remember, we have created a checklist for you so you can have all the information all in one place.
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Modern Chinese Wedding, Wedding Resources