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Barbara Elam, artist; Jolie Humphrey, Chair, Mad Hatter's Tea

Mad Hatter’s Tea Out of Africa Into the Garden Features a Limited-Edition Exquisite Custom Silk Scarf Designed For This Event by Barbara Elam For Sale Now!

Mad Hatter’s Tea is Celebrating its 33rd Year benefiting the Women’s Council of the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden and A Woman’s Garden

Mark your calendars for Thursday, April 15, 2021


Jolie Humphrey, chair of Mad Hatter’s Tea Out of Africa Into the Garden announces production of a limited-edition custom silk scarf created by nationally renowned artist Barbara Elam, who also created the event’s poster and logo. The scarf is 100% silk twill measuring 40”x 40” and features a hand-rolled hem. Cost is $185. It highlights the magnificent animal life, savannahs, rain forests and coastal areas, which are all part of Africa’s special appeal and inspiration. Bold colorful blooms, exotic plants and rare species native to the continent are world-renowned for their great beauty and horticultural diversity. Elam’s artwork brilliantly captures the theme of this year’s Mad Hatter’s Tea with its whimsical animals and vibrant flowers in this exquisite, commemorative silk scarf. The scarf can be purchased through the Women’s Council website at or on Thursday, April 15, 2021 at Mad Hatter’s Tea at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. This is the event’s 33rd year benefiting the Women’s Council of the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden and A Woman’s Garden. Carole Ann Brown, chair of the first Mad Hatter’s Tea in 1989 is honorary chair. Kay Weeks is president of the Women’s Council.

Barbara has a long history in Dallas and many local fans. She has shown her artworks in exhibits at the Bath House at White Rock Lake. She is a Professor Emeritus of Art at Rockford College and DePauw University. She received the honor of Bunting Institute Fellow of Radcliffe College at Harvard University in 1989 where she was an artist in residence. Her work has been included in over 250 national exhibits and international exhibits, as well. In addition, her pieces are in museum and university collections including The Fogg Museum of Harvard, Milwaukee Museum of Art, Indianapolis Museum of Art, and Art Institute of Chicago. Barbara Elam received her BFA from the University of Texas at Dallas and her MFA from East Texas State University, along with advanced studies in printmaking at the University of Dallas at Irving.  She continues her printmaking to this day.

“This year is unlike any other year for Mad Hatter’s Tea,” Jolie said, “and we’ve created a wonderfully unique experience for our guests which follows all of the CDC guidelines and has some new surprises.”

The fanciful fun begins at 1:00 p.m. with a champagne reception at Dallas Arboretum’s Scott K. Ginsburg Family Plaza. This is the best time to view the wild and wonderful over-the-top hats and outfits along with the very chic, sleek and sophisticated fashions. Celebrity judges will select winners in these categories: Out of Africa: Most “True to Theme;” Safari Riders: Best Group in Hats; African Floral Garden: Best Botanical Using Fresh Florals; Karen Blixen Style: Most Elegant & Romantic; Sundowner Chic: “Cocktail Hour in Africa,” Most Fascinating Fascinator; African Queen: Most “True to Africa;” Animal Instinct: Most Outlandish! Go Wild!  Guests have an opportunity to purchase Safari Surprise Boxes.

After the reception, the program begins and Hat Prizes will be awarded at A Tasteful Place Gardens, which includes a seated tea in the gardens and features a fashion promenade throughout the garden’s walkways presented by TOOTSIES. The event concludes at 4:00 p.m. which allows perfect timing to get together with friends amongst the glorious springtime azalea displays and flowers that grace the Dallas Arboretum.

Watch this utterly charming and entertaining short video announcing the theme and honorary chair written by Jolie, directed by Sharon and Maurice Ballew and produced by Maurice Ballew, MCB Videos. Here’s the link:

Single tickets start at $350 with limited availability. Patron ticket for one is $500 and has special benefits. Underwriting and sponsorships available beginning at $2,000 table for 4 guests; $5,000 table up to 8 guests; $10,000 table up to 10 guests and $15,000 table up to 10 guests. Visit the website at for underwriting, sponsorships, ticket purchase and details.

 ABOUT THE WOMEN’S COUNCIL:  Since 1986 the major goal of the Women’s Council has been the design, construction, funding and endowment of A Woman’s Garden, the only public garden in the United States conceived by women, funded by the efforts of women and dedicated to the spirit of women. The support of over 500 members of the Women’s Council makes possible the continued expansion and development of A Woman’s Garden. The Women’s Council is an all-volunteer, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

ABOUT A WOMAN’S GARDEN: A Woman’s Garden is the only garden in the nation conceived, constructed and maintained by the funding efforts of women. Ablaze with color in every season, A Woman’s Garden sits majestically as a living testament to the passion and vision of the Women’s Council founders and the boundless energy and devotion of its members whose commitment to creating a garden dedicated to the universal spirit of women across generations is realized in its inspired design. Our beautiful garden celebrates the power, creativity, resourcefulness, passion and unwavering commitment of the women who came before us and those entrusted with its care now, and into the future.

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