Want to hear something absolutely bonkers? Lewis Carroll’s original novel Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland turned 150 this week. Girl, I know, between Gwen Stefani music videos and Tim Burton films, that story is still kicking, and if you’re an Alice enthusiast like I am, attention must be paid. Now while there’s no doubt you just finished sitting down at a table with a bunch of mad people on Thanksgiving, that doesn’t mean you can’t arrange a tea party of your own on one of the book’s unbirthdays!
But how do you do it? I mean, sure, you’ve definitely pulled off an Alice in Wonderland group Halloween costume in the past (because you are a human being on planet Earth) but this isn’t amateur hour. You want to do it right.
Don’t worry, I paged through Lewis Carroll’s work in an effort to appear Adorably Whimsical in Brooklyn, so I’m just gonna lay down for you all 13 necessary things you need to celebrate Alice’s centennial-and-a-half.
1. One empty jar of what used to be orange marmalade.
One thing Alice grabs as she falls down the rabbit hole is an empty jar labeled “orange marmalade” and she’s so deeply distressed that it isn’t full. I guess you could work around this and just have a full jar of orange marmalade as to not waste any money. Or you could do what I do and just highjack packets from your local IHOP (because anything else is too rich for my blood, tbh).
2. Bottles and labels.
“Eat me.” “Drink me.” It’s not just the title of one of Marilyn Manson’s less successful efforts. Just in case people don’t know what to do with food and liquids, properly mark all your around-the-table wares. Oh, but double-check if the drink is poison. Alice says, “if you drink much from a bottle marked poison it is almost certain to disagree with you sooner or later.” And you know what, I think that’s a really fair assessment.
3. A variety of small cakes.
Their purpose? In the story Alice eats them in order to stretch her form. “If I eat one of these cakes it’s sure to make some change in my size,” she acknowledges early on. I mean, it’s small cake, Alice, you’re not going HAM on a whole plate of Fudgie the Whale. In the long run it might just make sense to bake cupcakes and call it a day.
4. Several comfits and an “elegant” thimble.
“The hell is a comfit?” You may ask. Remember those weird, hard, oblong, gross candies that people wrap in tulle to and give out at pre-Pinterest Christenings? That. To be fair, I think you could substitute with a more dignified candy (Mike and Ikes? who knows). The essential part is that you have to give it out to all your friends and then reward yourself with the thimble, or else the entire thing is completely ridiculous.
Allegedly there are two sides of the mushroom, something only the caterpillar could really understand. Well, and my high school boyfriend, I guess, but I’ll tell you that story when you’re older. Regardless, this is the perfect excuse for some stuffed mushrooms, so pick out a recipe and get crazy.
6. Someone dressed in blue smoking from a hookah in a corner.
It’s very doubtful you can train an actual caterpillar to do this, not that I’ve tried. But better a caterpillar smokes than you (it ain’t good for you, folks).
7. Bad Manners.
Everyone is so rude in Wonderland, so keep to form. When Alice first approaches for tea the Hatter and co freak out and says there’s “no room.” I suggest you do the same anytime anyone tries to sit down, it’ll make them feel so welcome.