A Tea Party with Dolls

Peek in as five friends enjoy a birthday celebration with their American Girl dolls.

All Dolled Up

Keller & Keller

What's the hottest place to host a birthday tea party? In Chicago, girls and their moms flock to the elegant cafe at American Girl Place, home of the American Girl collection of historic and contemporary dolls. The cafe offers a birthday luncheon of tea sandwiches, cake, chocolate mousse, and other delicacies in an ambiance geared to making the honored guest and her friends feel special. Girls are invited to bring along their favorite dolls, which are seated in miniature booster seats and "served" from tiny china plates and teacups.

A party like this -- which can be themed around favorite teddy bears, rescue heroes, or other playthings that are meaningful to your child -- lets the magic of make-believe come to life. "A favorite doll is a treasured friend and a playmate, so it's no surprise that a child would want to share her big day with her doll," says Kamille Adamany, director of the American Girl Cafe.

As American Girl prepares to open its second flagship store on Fifth Avenue in New York City this fall, Child traveled to Chicago for a birthday tea party with five excited 7- and 8-year-olds and their dolls. We picked up easy ideas parents can use to create a similar celebration at home.

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