Kites have always played a large role in Japanese culture, traditions and celebrations. These beautifully painted and decorated kites can be seen in shrines, museums and in homes. During the Edo period in Japan, kite making grew to be very popular and different regions of Japan created their own style, featuring characters of Japanese folklore, mythology and symbolic meaning. While the most common use for kites is during celebrations, like Boy’s Day on May 5th or harvest festivals, large kites were also used for practical purposes like construction where they were used to lift tiles up to the rooftops.
The kitsune (fox) mask is one of the most famous traditional masks in Japan. Masks have been a part of Japanese song, dance, religion and celebration for hundreds of years. Lately, they have also become popular in pop culture, seen throughout Japanese TV shows and anime. Learn more about kitsune masks and download a mask DIY activity for your little citizens.
I was so happy to meet Hatsuki Miyahara when we visited Kyoto. She was kind enough to train over from Osaka just to meet up with us. She was such a sweetheart and even with the language barrier we connected immediately. Her paintings are beautiful and elegant with cheerful layered colors. Her paintings are uniquely her own, immediately recognizable because no one else paints like she does. Yet, they still feel quintessentially Japanese.
If you’ve ever been in a Japanese restaurant or strolled through Japantown or Chinatown in a nearby city, chances are you’ve noticed a little cat statue on a shelf or in a shop window. You may have even noticed that little cat waving it’s paw at you! This little cat figurine, called maneki neko, is a lucky charm that is very popular in Japanese cultures. Maneki neko (or lucky cat) is a talisman that is believed to attract good luck or fortune to those who own one. Here’s what we’ve learned about this good luck charm…
We love getting the inside scoop from our designers about their designs. From animals to geometric shapes, every graphic has a story behind it. We’ve learned about far away animals and traditional nordic weaving techniques. The Rainbow Rays Graphic Dress is no exception and inspired us to create our very own mosaic planter. Follow our instructions below to create your own design… It’s much easier than it looks!
Being a peninsula, Italy is surrounded by beautiful turquoise seas. Fish and marine life play a major part in Italian culture – from the art to the cuisine. While traveling up the coast, we stopped at a fish market and marveled at how many different types of fish were for sale. We even had a chance to chat with a real fisher-woman! We’re sharing a behind-the-scenes look at some of our favorite graphic tees inspired by Italian sea life.
Museums, markets, city centers, parks… These are all places you might find Tea designers out and about snapping photos and taking notes for our collections. Another place you may find them? In the lobby of their hotel. To make the most of each trip, we search high and low to find interesting places to stay. From boutique hotels outside of Jaipur to eclectic Airbnbs in Berlin, we make an effort to stay in places that are unique to that specific destination.
None of the places we’ve stayed have inspired us quite like the Parco dei Principi Hotel in Sorrento, Italy. From the tiles seen throughout the hotel to the clean lines of the mid-century furniture in our rooms—we just couldn’t get enough. Here’s an inside look at the hotel that inspired dozens of the styles in our summer collection.