For our Costa Brava collection we were inspired by the colors and icons of Cadaqués – a coastal fishing village in Catalonia. The town had a distinctive color palette of whites, blues and sunny yellows – which we used to create fun summery pieces. We love the vintage nautical feel, which inspired the silhouettes and graphics of the season.
Back in college I took a film class and made a documentary comparing gorillas to my fellow college students. Guess who was more civilized? Anyway, I spent a lot of time getting to know the lovely family group at the Pittsburgh Zoo and really fell in love. Since then, I’ve become really interested in great ape conservation. So when my friend sent me the above postcard from Barcelona I was pretty stoked to learn about an albino gorilla. Snowflake was one of the most popular residents at the Barcelona zoo. He has become a beloved icon of Barcelona and the embodiment of gorilla conservation. As soon as I learned we were doing Barcelona as a destination, I set out to design a shirt in tribute to a very special gorilla.
Watch the PBS special on Snowflake at HULU.
Check out these resources to learn more or contribute to gorilla conservation:
Sita Murt is a contemporary Spanish fashion designer. Born into a family of leather tanners, she now is the head of Esteve Aguilera (a designer knitwear company). Sita’s whole life has been surrounded by fashion, and as soon as her four children were grown she began designing her own line. Her women’s designs are young and airy, using lightweight fabrics.
Above is a film from Sita’s blog showcasing a dress from her latest line to celebrate spring. In her words, it is “a film that portrays, with all the simplicity, the immense power of spring, the driving force of life.”
This calendar, created by Spanish designer Oscar Diaz, uses the capillary action of paper to draw ink out of the bottle. Designed to migrate across the sheet daily, the ink fills in each set of numbers with color to represent each day of the month. Different months are represented by a range of colors – greens and yellows in Spring, and reds in Summer. The ink calendar has been exhibited at various design shows around Europe – I wish it was actually in production!
With the clocks turned ahead, it’s starting to feel a lot like spring. And for those of you taking a spring break (or just thinking or wishing for warmer weather), we’ve put together our favorite must-have looks for girls and boys.
from left: We have our butterfly-adorned Mariposa Top, paired with our classic Paperbag Shorts. The Marisol Hoodie is a perfect warm layer for windy evenings on the beach, over the Racerback Stripe Tank in asparagus green, and comfy French Terry Shorts. The Songbird Banded Dress can be dressed up or down, and the Citron Flora Playdress encourages adventures anywhere, anytime. Pair anything and everything with our brightly-colored Espadrilles and you’re ready to go!
from left: Our Goril Graphic Tee gives strength for all expeditions, and the Cut Off Cord Shorts and Sidewalk Surfers in Dark Brown or Grey are a perfect match. Mix and match outfits with our Tortuga and Barcelona Tees over Long Cargo Shorts. Instead of traditional layers, roll up and down when the weather changes with our Slub Polo and Painter Roll Up Pants.
Check back with us in a month or so and we’ll have lots more summery clothes from our new Costa Brava collection to add to the list. Summer at Tea will be all about maritime style with a vintage vibe, made modern. Until then, happy spring travels!
The New York Times came out with an interesting article yesterday on Picasso, specifically focusing on his work with guitars. We love Picasso’s guitars, and were inspired by them to create our Guitarra Tee (see below). For more information have look at our past blog posts on the Cubist Art Movement, and Cubism and Guitars.
One of my favorite things to do when traveling is try and stock up on various local sweets and chocolate. Spain first began consuming chocolate in the 1600s, after conquering the Aztecs in the Americas, and discovering the cocoa bean. It’s rumored that the first official recipe for chocolate emerged in 1644 by Antonia Colmenero in the book A Curious Treatise of the Nature and Quality of Chocolate:
- 100 cacao beans
- 2 chiles (black pepper may be substituted)
- a handful of anise
- “ear flower”
- 1 vanilla pod
- 2 ounces cinnamon
- 12 almonds or hazelnuts
- pound sugar
- achiote to taste
Chocolate in Spain has evolved since then, and now is often served hot, and with churros on the side.
Not being in Spain ourselves, we at Tea are big fans of Vosges‘s Barcelona Bar – which we can buy just down the street. It may be made in the USA, but the almonds, sea salt, and rich chocolate are all reminiscent of Spain.
One of our local tourist attractions in San Francisco are the parrots of Telegraph Hill. Feral and free-flying, these Cherry-Headed Conures are often seen (and heard!) in flocks over Coit Tower and the North Beach neighborhood. Originally from Peru and Ecuador, these parrots are believed to be descendants of escaped or released pets. In 2004 there was a film made about them, titled The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill.
Another flock of wild parrots can be found in Park Guell, in Barcelona Spain. A gorgeous park filled with architecture by Gaudi and rolling gardens, it also is home to a large flock of Monk Parakeets.
The parrots and tile mosaics of Park Guell inspired our designers to create our Perico Mosaic top:
Have you encountered any flocks of wild urban parrots on your travels?