Category Archives: Behind the Scenes

August 30, 2011

Pont des Arts Bridge

Every year Tea employees receive a dividend from Tea to use towards international travel. On Studio T we’ll be sharing travel stories of our employees as they travel around the world.

Earlier this month I returned from a vacation to England, Paris, and New York. I went to England to visit family (I’m English/American), Paris for my birthday, and New York to reconnect with old friends and neighborhoods where I used to live. The whole two weeks was a beautiful blur of old cities, family, English vocabulary, French language, Parisian fashion, and the bustling streets of New York.  But somehow what I have the most photos of on my camera is a bridge over the River Seine where I spent my final morning in Paris.

The Pont des Arts bridge was finished in 1804, and was the first metal bridge in Paris.  Connecting the Left Bank with the Right Bank, and leading directly to the Louvre, it gets a lot of foot traffic from visiting tourists. It has held up valiantly despite two World Wars, but succumbed to a 60 foot barge that ran into it in 1979. Now reopened and more beautiful than ever, it has become a strangely surreal landmark. The criss-crossing metal siding of the bridge has become covered with thousands of padlocks, placed there by lovers who then threw the key into the water of the Seine below. Initials of the couples and sweet notes are written on most locks. The twinkling and sparkling of these locks can be seen a block away, and one can spend hours reading the sweet inscriptions.

After spending 5 days in the city of romance, and being somewhat superstitious, I couldn’t help but want my own piece of the Pont des Arts ritual. But where to find a lock? I searched everywhere for une serrure and finally found one at the Bon Marche department store. My mother and I celebrated the end of the treasure hunt by purchasing tarts and pastries from their exquisite supermarket on the first floor, and we ate them in Luxembourg Gardens while watching little Parisian children push their sailboats around the pond.

I waited until my last morning in Paris to add my lock to the bridge.

Newspapers around the world are hinting that Paris is not such a fan of these locks – one article threatened that the city was going to remove the locks as they were defacing a public monument. The article was written in May of this year, but when I was there a few weeks ago many of the locks looked old and rusted shut, and there were so many that I couldn’t imagine they were just a summer’s worth.

What do you think? Are the locks a sparkly homage to superstitious lovers, or are they an eyesore on an old monument? I encourage you to walk along the Seine, with the morning sun casting long shadows along the cobblestones, a hot crepe wrapped in paper in your hand, and witness the bridge in person before you make a decision.

August 26, 2011

Inside Studio T: Sample Sale

Every Friday we share a weekly behind-the-scenes photo taken in our offices at Tea. This could be anything – great employee outfits, our sources of inspiration, shots from our parties, or photos of us hard at work. For more sneak peeks behind the scenes at Tea click here.

Last week we hosted a Tea Sample Sale at our offices to clear out stock from previous seasons. Before we opened the doors to the masses (who were lined up around the block), I took a few shots of some girl’s and women’s clothes that were hanging on the racks. I love our Sample Sales for the opportunity to see patterns and styles from past seasons that I loved, and have forgotten about.

And there’s another Sample Sale this weekend, at our offices in San Francisco! $5 entry, with all entry fees going to the Global Fund for Children. Details are as follows:

Location: 117 Wisconsin Street, San Francisco 94107

Days: Friday August 26th, 9am – 3pm and Saturday August 27th, 9am – 1pm.

August 19, 2011

Inside Studio T: The Pond

Every Friday we share a weekly behind-the-scenes photo taken in our offices at Tea. This could be anything – great employee outfits, our sources of inspiration, shots from our parties, or photos of us hard at work. For more sneak peeks behind the scenes at Tea click here.

We have two offices at Tea, right across the street from one other. Our home base is located at 1 Arkansas Street, where we do all our thinking, designing, marketing, merchandising, and customer care. The second, affectionately called “T2″, is used for big meetings, hosting fun events for retailers or bloggers, and photo shoots. We love that T2 is in a building that mainly caters to architects, as it includes a huge landscaped courtyard garden. And in that garden? This pond, filled with goldfish. I love walking by it when commuting from office to office. Wouldn’t you?

August 18, 2011

weeDecor’s Tea-Inspired Wall Motifs

We’re happy to announce a new partnership – with our local friends weeDECOR! weeDECOR makes wall decals for nurseries and children’s rooms. Our designers collaborated with them to create the wall decals above (clockwise:  Whimsical Birds, Origami Elephant, Tori Bird & Flower, Origami Bird).

“Tea, a leader in children’s fashion, is well known for their gorgeous and sophisticated prints and colors. We are thrilled to turn those prints into wall decals for children’s rooms”, said Pam Webber, CEO and founder of weeDECOR.  “We are especially honored to work with a fellow San Francisco company to offer parents more eco-friendly decorating solutions in the prints and palettes they have known to love from Tea.”

All weeDECOR products are made with a biodegradable fabric, and are reusable if you want to move them from room to room.

We’re totally charmed by them – arem’t you?

August 5, 2011

Inside Studio T: Cosmic Dresses

Every Friday we share a weekly behind-the-scenes photo taken in our offices at Tea.This could be anything – great employee outfits, our sources of inspiration, shots from our parties, or photos of us hard at work. For more sneak peeks behind the scenes at Tea click here.

Letty & Isabelle’s outfits looked so cute together we had to share…

Letty’s dress from: Osei-Duro

Isabelle’s dress from: Madewell

 

July 29, 2011

Inside Studio T: Flowers and Cacti

Every Friday we share a weekly behind-the-scenes photo taken in our offices at Tea.This could be anything – great employee outfits, our sources of inspiration, shots from our parties, or photos of us hard at work. For more sneak peeks behind the scenes at Tea click here.

vintage photo effect courtesy of instagram (very popular amongst tea employees)

There always seems to be pretty flower and plant arrangements floating around this office.  These guys have been sitting down by the lunch table this week.  Aren’t they sweet?


July 22, 2011

Inside Studio T: Zapatista Doll

Every Friday we share a weekly behind-the-scenes photo taken in our offices at Tea.This could be anything – great employee outfits, our sources of inspiration, shots from our parties, or photos of us hard at work. For more sneak peeks behind the scenes at Tea click here.

Amber on the design team brought this zapatista doll back from Mexico. Zapatistas are a leftist revolutionary group based out of Chiapas, and their fashion is a huge part of identifying who is participating in the movement. We’ll be writing more about them later! This little doll sits on the windowsill in the design department watching the daily hustle and bustle. We brought him downstairs to show him off in front of our large map of the world.

July 15, 2011

Inside Studio Tea

Studio T is starting something new! Beginning today we’ll share a weekly behind-the-scenes photo taken in our offices at Tea.This could be anything – great employee outfits, our sources of inspiration, shots from our birthday parties, or photos of us hard at work. What would you like to encounter behind the scenes at Tea?

A section of the “Modern Mexico Inspiration Wall” over our Art Director’s desk, used as an influential guide for shooting our upcoming Modern Mexico catalog.

June 29, 2011

Modern Mexico Inspiration Video

Behind the Design Wednesdays: Every week Tea writes about our designers’ inspiration for our current collection of clothing.

To start off our new Behind the Design Wednesdays and to kick off our new Modern Mexico collection for girls and boys, we thought we’d post a video of footage shot while our designers were traveling around Mexico.  We’ll release more of this collection in the coming weeks! We hope you feel as inspired as we do.

 

June 24, 2011

A Little Bit of Everything in Paris

Today we have a guest post from Ana, who works in Graphic Design at Tea. Every year Tea employees receive a dividend from Tea to use towards international travel. On Studio T we’ll be sharing travel stories of our employees as they travel around the world.

This year my international travels took me to Paris to meet my first niece Sofia. She is a gorgeous half French half Venezuelan healthy baby girl. So for this particular visit to the City of Lights, it was all about family time and not about sightseeing. I’m excited to see her grow up in a mix of cultures, and right now I’m undecided about a little detail… do I want her to call me Tia Anita? Tante Ana? Or Auntie Ana? French and Spanish will definitely surround her, but in me she has a very American aunt! So she will have a little bit of everything I guess.

Ana and Sofia

There are different things I would love to share from this trip, and I have a hard time selecting which ones to share. But I’ll share highlights of my favorite things!

This trip was not about the Eiffel Tour or Champs Elysees; it was about spending quality time with Sofia and my family. So on a Saturday, my mom, dad and I walked to a local market: Saxe-Breteuil Market in the 7th arrondissement. It was a bit overwhelming because it was crowded and the locals have their way of navigating their way through their market… and there were so many different things that you just didn’t know where to start! From cheeses, to hand-made Italian pastas, to jewelry and hats… you could find anything you wanted. On this visit we got a variety of raviolis and fresh vegetables to make pasta for lunch, and of course a cheese platter for dessert.

One afternoon, my mom and I took a walk on Rue de Sèvres and visited the Hermes store there. Amazing. My family had told me about how beautiful it was inside and the minute I saw the window displays I knew I was in for a treat! The entrance had a flower section with orchids and mini flower arrangements on one side and on the other it was all about horses and the classic Hermes scarf. But what really drew me in was once you started walking down the stairs into the main floor this enormous three pear-shaped tee-pees made out of wood and in each of them a different theme: beach, home linen and home china. My eyes were flying all over every detail. The floors, the leather handles on the staircase with the wood… forget about the product the experience of being in the store was just perfect for inspiration! And right next to the Hermes store there is a children’s bookstore: Librairie Chantelivre that I definitely recommend checking out. We were lucky enough that a Chinese illustrator was signing his books and he didn’t just sign the books–he drew illustrations with ink and brush on the spot. I think the parents were more excited than the kids to see the man at work!

The highlight I could go on forever about is Roland Garros. My hobby is tennis. I’ve been playing since I was a kid and now in my free time I play competitively (and for fun of course).  So to get to sit in the stand of Philippe Chatrier during the 40th anniversary of Roland Garros was an amazing treat.  I was only able to go to one day, but the tennis I saw was amazing: defending champion Francesca Schiavone, Novak Djokovic – winning his 38th straight win in 2011! For a tennis fan this was one lucky day to get all this great tennis on the first round of the open. I wish my pictures could show how amazing the tennis was, but my main focus was to capture the tennis form of the players so that I could improve my game!

The last little thing I’d love to share is that on one of the walks to the metro to go from our place to my sister’s place, there’s a little park across the street from Le Bon Marché…as we were walking by I spotted a trailer and my mind clicked: they’re having a photo shoot at the park! I’ve been doing a little bit of photography at Tea and now I can’t help but pay more attention to photography so I had to go check it out. I’m a little bit shy so I didn’t go and talked to anyone, but I did take a minute just to see them work. I have no idea what they were shooting for; there were two very tall models that looked like they were wearing something straight out of Lagerfeld’s sketchbook: