August 31, 2014

High Tea Anyone?

Not going to pretend to make up excuses why I haven’t blogged in months, just going to get back into it.

I got bit by the Halloween bug sometime in July and was toying with the idea of doing a Fairytale Gone Bad theme for the party this year.

Somewhere in the process of browsing Alice in Wonderland/ Red Queen themed parties on the internet I ended up falling in love with the concept of high-tea-stand serving platters and decided I needed one for myself.


Mikasa Venitian Lace Bone China Set  from Bed Bath & Beyond (Don’t be fooled by the high sticker price, I lucked out and picked up this set for $15 in the clearance section. I’m guessing it was a return or the display set since it was unboxed.)

1/4″ Diamond Drill Bit from Home Depot/ Lowes/Ace Hardware etc.

Cake/High Tea Stand Kit/Hardware  from Ebay. Measurment of the pieces from the seller said the rods were 6mm so I bought a 1/4″ or 6.4 mm drill bit.

Cordless Drill

Teacup Variation requires in addition to the above:

*Specialty Threaded Rod
*6mm nuts  (Qty: 5)

DIY Instructions:

Make a template for drilling the circular hole by setting the plate on a towel and placing a piece of paper over the bottom.  Crease the paper around the rim of the base to form a circle.  Fold the circle in eighths until the creases form a point in the center. Using the tip of a pen, pierce a hole where the lines intersect. Replace the template over the plate bottom and mark the center with a permanent marker.

Drilling the hole:  Getting the hole started in the right place is the hardest part, and did I mention this is a wet drill bit so your mark may wash off if you didn’t use a good marker? Start by tiling the drill at a 45 degree angle and using the edge to form a slight groove. Gradually ease the drill into an upright, vertical alignment, applying gentle pressure.  Be sure to keep the area you are drilling saturated with water. If the area becomes too milky, rinse with more water and continue drilling.

I was worried the top finish of the plate would chip when the bit pushed through, but the gentle pressure and water worked perfectly.

Assemble the tiers:  The kit came with a 6mm screw and metal washer to support the bottom.

However, I wanted to have the tea cup on the top, which required some additional hardware since the threads of the middle rod were too short to pass through the cup and the small plate.

Specialty 6mm threaded extension piece.

In Lowes or Ace Hardware there’s an aisle with drawers and all kinds of special threaded rods, nuts, and bots. The extension piece I used for the tea cup was in the Specialty/Automotive drawer.

The extension piece screws into the top handle.

The next problem was that the middle rod had a threaded end and there’s no such thing as a 6mm male to female converter that will still fit through a 6mm hole.

So… I flipped the rods upside down.  This now meant that I had a thread sticking out of the bottom instead of the original securing screw.   I used a washer and locking nut to secure the plate and glued four more nuts on the bottom to make feet to fix the stability issue created by having a 6mm nut on the bottom instead of a flat headed screw.


  1. Botanist

    That is ingenious! I remember my mom had a cake stand which could be taken apart for storage, but I never thought about a DIY version!

    As for the plate chipping, slow and gentle is good. I also reckon it might help to have the plate resting on a block of wood immediately behind where you're drilling. That is always a good tip to avoid splintering when you're drilling through wood and it might help here too.

  2. Kimberlee Turley

    Ooh, good idea with the block of wood!

  3. Weaver

    Clever girl! This is too fun.

  4. Julie Dao

    WOW! I'm impressed – that looks beautiful! I especially love the idea of having the teacup on top, rather than just another plate. You should whip up a batch of these and sell them on Etsy – I bet they'd go like hotcakes!

Who is Kimberlee Turley?

Kimberlee Turley grew up in California where she earned a degree in Fashion Design from FIDM in 2005. Soon after, she married her husband, who was neither Mr. Darcy nor Edward Cullen, but he’d read her atrocious first novel and said it was “good” with a straight face.

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