Tea was introduced to Britain in the 1660s, but the first documented history of the use of a tea cosy in Britain was in 1867. The Duchess of Bedford popularized afternoon tea as a light meal before dinner and an activity to occupy the time of affluent women. Afternoon tea was the time for networking and keeping up to date with aristocracy gossip and topical news. With all the chatter at teatime the teapot would get cold, which would have at times cut short some tea parties. And so, the tea cosy came about. Tea cosies then flourished during the late 19th century, where they appeared in many households across Britain, motivated by the obsession of decorating and covering objects characteristic of the Victorian era. Tea cosies started to be used in North America in the same period. Newspapers of the time reveal that tea cosies enjoyed "a sudden and unexpected rise in public favour" among women who hosted tea parties. Newspapers of the time included advice columns on how to make one: "Some very handsome ones are made of remnants of heavy brocade but linen is generally used, embroidered or not, according to taste, as these covers are washable. Hope you enjoy browsing through my hand knitted tea cosies and fall in love with one! Buy an original vintage tea cosy, there are no two alike!
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