The first Love from the North tea party took place on March 10th at the Midland Hotel in Manchester. It was a collaboration between admins from the Leeds and North-West Lolita communities. In the end it attracted attendees from all across England, as well as Scotland, Ireland and even from continental Europe.
The tea party celebrated all things Northern and also those related to White Day. The name Love from the North encouraged all kinds of coords, whether they matched the theme or not. On the day many delivered beautiful and clever all white, chocolate and North-themed coordinates. Especially the last kind was a true show of people’s ingenuity and love for their part of the North.
Everyone received a set of event goodies. A special Love from the North pin, a zine with a pen and two bingo cards waited at every seat. The zine had several activities to complete such as a crossword or a print generator. The crossword was especially relevant and included some current, topical prompts. In addition, the pins also meant to give wearers a discount for drinks at the afterparty venue later that evening.
The Midland Hotel provided exquisite afternoon tea service, as well as stunning surroundings, perfect for outfit shots. This was probably the best afternoon tea service I have ever experienced. The staff clearly identified trays for guests with special dietary requirements and catered to them all. They also offered helpful advice to those undecided over the large tea menu. Finally, they ensured that everything food-related went smoothly.
The event organisers created something really special. The atmosphere was wonderful, everything ran smoothly and the bingo was a lot of fun. The UK indie brand, Peacockalorum, even created a bespoke JSK and tights set! It features a Manchester architecture print in a stunning pink-grey gradient pearskin material. Attendees were able to place pre-orders for it during the event and one set was the main bingo prize that day.
Although the weather that day was typically Mancunian – cloudy, rainy and windy – inside the atmosphere was warm and bright. The tea party was the first opportunity since the Winter International Lolita Day to see friends from further afield. For many, this was the first big event since Dream Masquerade Carnival in London in August last year. It was exciting to catch up with friends and spend the afternoon in such an exquisitely dressed company.
On the day we had the privilege to welcome Anh Binh Truong from Anh Binh Photography as our official photographer. He has photographed large Lolita events before, like Omnia Vanitas in Barcelona in March 2017. Thanks to his expertise and help with posing, everyone was able to get a stunning coordinate photo from the day. As a result, the queue to be photographed by him extended through the whole room!
Everyone left Love from the North smiling and elated, but the fun did not stop there. The afterparty in the evening provided more opportunities to spend time with friends and enjoy other styles of J-fashion. The organisers did a wonderful job and the entire event was a success. As a result of their fantastic work, many even expressed hopes that this will not be the last Great Northern tea party.
If you’d like to read a more personal report from the event, you can read one on my personal blog. There are also a few video reports on YouTube, like this and this one, which I encourage you to check out too!