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To celebrate the release of the Downton Abbey DVD, I threw a small movie night party for a couple friends complete with classic British snacks, a fun ’20s-inspired craft, and of course, a viewing of the movie. Read on to get all of the Downton Abbey Party planning details – and don’t forget to grab your free printable party planner at the bottom of the post!
Downton Abbey Party
Are you a Downton Abbey fan?
It’s been 4 years since the series ended and while I’m totally content to rewatch those six series over and over again, I was so excited to hear about the movie and even more pumped when I was asked to help promote the new release of the Downton Abbey DVD, available at Walmart and on Walmart.com.
The DVD is an expansion from the series, bringing back all of our favorite characters. I don’t want to give too much away, but the movie centres around “the most important moment of [the beloved Crawleys and their intrepid staff’s] lives. A royal visit from the King and Queen of England.” Scandal, romance, and intrigue all follow.
If you have spent any time on Sugar, Spice and Glitter, you probably know that I love a good theme.
*understatement of the year*
I couldn’t just invite friends over for popcorn and pop in the movie. That’s just not how I do things.
I needed decor – a fun mix of proper English tea settings and roaring ’20s Art Deco.
I needed themed snacks – a mix of savoury appetizers and sweet treats.
And, just for fun, I wanted to include an activity that could be done while watching the movie: making our own ’20s-style headbands or fascinators.
Downton Abbey Party Menu
My friends would have been happy with just popcorn, but they also know better than to show up at my house without an appetite.
Every recipe involved less than 10 minutes of prep time and can be prepared the day before for easy party planning.
- Yorkshire Puddings with homemade herb and garlic cream cheese and roast beef
- Cucumbers topped with homemade herb and garlic cream cheese
- Lemon Blueberry Scones
- Cinnamon Brown Sugar Scones
- Homemade Clotted Cream (for the scones) and our favorite jams
- Old-fashioned Gingerbread Cake
- Tea-time cookies (“biscuits”) like bourbon creams, custard creams, etc.
The Yorkshire puddings were my fun play on a roast beef supper. You can swap out the homemade herb and garlic cream cheese for horseradish – or add some horseradish to the cream cheese.
The cucumbers topped with homemade herb and garlic cream cheese are a lighter take on cucumber tea sandwiches. Elegant finger sandwiches would also be a great choice.
My favorite dessert on the menu was that old-fashioned gingerbread cake. The recipe actually comes from the Official Downton Abbey Cookbook and is super simple to make. It seemed appropriate since my party fell in December, but I wouldn’t hesitate to make this any other time of year! It was so good, and ginger was a popular spice in England in the ’20s so it would still fit the theme, even if you were throwing this party in the middle of August.
Jellied desserts and roast chicken would also be perfect for a Downton Abbey-themed party, as both make significant appearances in the series.
Downton Abbey Party Decor
Since the house is mostly decorated for Christmas, I didn’t get too carried away with the Downton Abbey decor as it would have been competing for attention with all the Christmas decor.
I kept things simple with an art deco-style table runner, a glitter-ified movie clapboard, and strategically placed tea pots.
I also used simple yet elegant silver serving trays for all of the food, for an added touch of Dowager glamour.
You can also add strings of pearl, flowers, British flags, and any elegant home accessories you may have already lying around in other parts of the house.
(I did buy two small potted roses for the party… but it’s me so I somehow managed to kill both of them within a week. Fake flowers next time!)
Downton Abbey Party Activity
I kept the movie as the main event for my party, with an optional fascinator craft set-up if my friends wanted to keep their hands busy during the movie.
You can also plan some card games, arrange to have a formal sit-down tea before the movie, or play some jazz music as guests arrive.
For the fascinators, I prepared several headbands with a felt oval to serve as the base for the fascinators, and then set them out along with hot glue guns, ribbons, feathers, mesh, and fake flowers.
And of course, what’s the point of making fabulous accessories with your friends without subjecting them to a photo opp? Pin or tape up a tablecloth for a cheap and easy photo booth.
I’d love to hear from you! Are you planning a Downton Abbey viewing party? Which of these ideas will you be using?