Category: We Love…

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)

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

In Celebration of Tiny Art Directors

If you’ve never seen the work of illustrator Bill Zeman and his daughter Rosie, you’re in for a treat. At the request of his daughter, Zeman illustrates scenes that she dictates and lets her judge the results. Some pieces are grudgingly approved, others adamantly denied, as Rosie does her best to pull “good art” out of her father.







Tiny Art Director started as a blog, and was published as a book in 2010. While humor is the main goal of this work, Zeman also raises an interesting point about encouraging children to view art critically. Recently Rosie the Tiny Art Director has learned the best way to express something is to do it herself. How do children express their imaginary worlds? What art do they like and not like – and more importantly, why?





Cristobal Balenciaga Eizaguirre started his first fashion boutique in San Sebastian, Spain in 1918, at the age of 33. Following great success after the Spanish Civil War, Balenciaga relocated to Paris, where his revolutionary designs became hot commodities, dressing royalty and celebrities. Despite his move to France he never lost his love of Spain, and many of his earlier items were heavily influenced by flamenco dresses and historical Spanish garb.


Balenciaga never gave an interview during his career, and so for many existed as a man of mystery. After his retirement in 1968 the house of Balenciaga stopped all production until 1986, when Jacques Bogart re-opened it with the goal to create a new ready-to-wear line. Bringing designers from all over the world, the Balenciaga name is at the forefront of modern innovative fashion.






If anyone is visiting San Francisco between now and July 4th 2011, be sure to check out the De Young Museum‘s exhibition Balenciaga and Spain. This retrospective examines the ways in which Spain as a nation influenced Balenciaga’s designs over the years.



Tea’s Stylista Project

A couple of months ago we heard a story about one of our former models, a girl named Francesca.  Francesca, we were told, has an avid interest in fashion–watching shows like Project Runway and What Not to Wear, devouring fashion magazines and constantly playing games of dress-up with her friends.

The stories of this little fashionista inspired us at Tea, and we decided to invite her to our studios for a photoshoot. How would a 9 year old style and fashion our line of clothes? We set up racks of our clothing, laid out accessories from previous photo shoots, and gave her free rein to design, style, and model her own outfits.

francesca 1

The result was a fun and energetic photoshoot, which gave us a whole new perspective on how Tea could be styled. Above: Francesca models our Fall 2010 Cord Cargo Pants, a Spring 2011 top (stay posted! coming out soon), Sanuk flip flops, and her grandfather’s cap. Below: She wears this season’s Painters Plaid Tunic, Fall 2010’s Stretch Slim Cord Pant, and Sidewalk Surfer Shoes.

francesca 2

The whole experience was so much fun, that we thought we’d  bring the challenge to you!

stylista image

Official Rules and Regulations, as well as a list of Participating stores can be found here.