Tag: Destination Catalonia

Una Luz Diminuta Surgió De La Nada


We found this beautifully illustrated children’s book on our trip to Spain. I wish I could tell you what it’s about, but it is VERY long and all in Spanish. I made up my own story based on the illustrations: There was a quirky scientist, who loved the beauty of nature and machinery. He discovered a way to create creatures that were half machine and half nature – but not in a freaky sci-fi kind of way – in a perfect symbiosis.

We especially loved these tables of some of his creations.



We decided to create our own creatures. We played the idea of a stilt walking tiger and a gear horse:


But finally decided that a heli-phant was the best choice.


Elefante Romper

Elsa Schiaparelli and Dalí’s: Lobster Dress

Elsa Schiaparelli was a prominent Italian designer who was heavily influenced by surrealism. She collaborated many times with Salvador Dalí.


Their most famous collaboration was the Lobster Dress (above), which has inspired a new generation of lobster dresses.


The Rodnik Band (2011)


Betsey Johnson (2010)


Heal Fashion Lab (2009)


Alexander McQueen (2009)


David Szeto (2004)

Subconciously Inspired by Surrealism

I had a hard time figuring out how to draw inspiration from Surrealism while designing this line. I thought it was especially important to touch on surrealism as two of Spain’s most influence artists were surrealists – Dalí and Miró. I designed a turtle and tiger graphic, but in the end I didn’t feel they were really representing surrealism. But months later I found artwork by Dalí that was really similar to the graphics I designed!  I was not familiar with any of these works, and they aren’t in the style I would typically associate with Dali:


Above: Dalí’s The Mock Turtle’s Story and Tea’s Tortuga Graphic Tee.


Above: Dalí’s Cinqenta, Tigre Real, Tea’s Tigre Graphic Tee

By looking at so much Spanish artwork, I was influenced of all the broken tiles and the fragmented shapes of Cubism; perhaps that’s what inspired Dalí’s work as well!

Speaking of a closely-related Tea Family…

Here’s a picture of Emily, our co-founder and chief creative officer with her daughter Georgia James. Georgia came into the office for a visit not long ago and we just had to capture the moment. We think Em and Georgia look resplendent and warm in their Tea clothes! By the way, Emily’s wearing the Mila Sweater and the Modernista Tee in Medium Heather Grey.

Emily and Georgia James

We’ll be sure and post more pics of Tea people (and their kids) in Tea. And as always please feel free share your own pics here or on Facebook. Happy Tuesday!

A closely-related family of styles

You may have heard that we go on Inspiration Trips every season to a different country. In Barcelona, our creative juices were stoked by both the art and the energetic/laid-back vibe. It’s no surprise that some of the signature kids’ and women’s items from our current Destination Catalonia collection were often inspired by similar sources. Perhaps you’ve wondered to yourself (or out loud) if you could get women’s tops, dresses or sweaters with the same unique Tea sensibility we infuse into children’s clothing. In a way, you can. Below are some of our favorite pairings in that vein.

Picasso Stripes:


Pablo Striped Sweater & Pablo Sweater Tunic and Seaside Studio Stripe Cardi

Abstract Leaves:


Hojas Banded Dress & Hojas del Mar Tunic

Painterly Shapes:


Artista Wrap Dress and Abstract Artista Scarf

Our Rambles on Las Ramblas

It’s been almost a year since our design team went on the Inspiration Trip to Catalonia, Spain. We spent much of our time in Barcelona taking in the food, architecture, art and people. Like many visitors, we found our way to Las Ramblas, which winds its way from Plaça de Catalunya (Barcelona’s unofficial city center) to Port Vell on the waterfront. It’s filled with trees and beautiful modernisme and Baroque architecture like Palau Moja and La Boqueria (Barcelona’s colorful food market). We wanted to share just a few photos from our trip:


Street View

The winding path of Las Ramblas reminds me a little of Lombard St. here in SF


Miro art in the plaza



Miro art in the plaza

Crazy Serpent Sculputure/Light fixture

Crazy serpent sculpture doubles as light fixture

Inspiration for our Modern Graphic Tee

Inspiration for our Modern Tee

Our head designer, Laura Boes is on her way back from her Inspiration Trip for Fall 2012 (if you can believe it). I’m hoping she’ll share a little bit more about her Las Ramblas rambles when she returns. And don’t forget to spring forward and turn your clocks ahead one hour. We’ll see you next week out and about enjoying the extra hour of daylight. Cheers!