Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Mad Hatter's Tea Announces Theme For 2016

Mad Hatter's Tea is always on my short list of "can't miss" events and 2016 looks like it will be another amazing showcase of fashion and fun.  The Women’s Council of the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden recently held an announcement party to unveil plans for 2016 where Jocelyn White, Mad Hatter’s Tea chair, welcomed the crowd and thanked Nerissa Von Helpenstill, Director at TOOTSIES, for hosting the night’s event.

The first reveal was the fabulous logo by fashion illustrator Rongrong DeVoe, literally depicting the theme for the 2016 Tea of Steel Magnolias – a fabulous sketch of a Southern gal wearing a hat with the steel structures of the City of Dallas rising out of the crown. Connie Carreker, a former Mad Hatter’s Tea chair, was announced as honorary chair. Jocelyn announced the Mad Hatter’s fashion show will be produced by Jan Strimple and feature fabulous spring fashions from sponsor TOOTSIES.

Shane Walker will once again create the centerpieces (and many of the events winning hats). Attending were Andrea Alcorn, Patricia Armstrong, Kay Hammond, Dixie Marshall and Linda Spina. Former Mad Hatter’s Tea chairs enjoying the scene were Carole Ann Brown, Kim Mathews, Dyan Skelton, Jewel Williams and Sharon Adams.

Mad Hatter’s Tea Steel Magnolias will celebrate its 28th anniversary on Thursday, April 21, 2015 at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. This fabulous and fun party has been an ongoing fundraising event sponsored by the Women’s Council of the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Monies raised grow and maintain A Woman’s Garden, a major garden at the Dallas Arboretum. Over 500 guests, some from as far away as California, plan their trips to Dallas not only to take part in the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party – many in wild and wonderful over-the-top hats - but to view the glorious springtime azalea displays and flowers that grace the Dallas Arboretum.

The event includes a champagne reception in Ginsburg Plaza, professionally staged and choreographed fashion presentation inside Rosine Hall and afterwards, hats are judged in different categories and contest winners are announced at the fashion show and strut the runway. The fashion show festivities are followed by a seated al fresco luncheon under elegantly draped tents. It is truly a day of fun, fashion and celebrating friends. Sponsorships and underwriting are available by contacting Patricia Armstrong, Underwriting chair at 214-215-1300 or email at For photos from past Mad Hatter’s Tea Parties and more information, visit the website at 

Photo: Nerissa Von Helpenstill (Director, TOOTSIES, fashion show sponsor); Billy Fulmer; Jocelyn White (Chair, Mad Hatter’s Tea); Connie Carreker (Honorary Chair); Shane Walker (Florist and table centerpieces); Jan Strimple (Fashion Show producer); Dustin Holcomb (TOOTSIES, fashion show sponsor) Photographer: Dana Driensky