The Exotic Teapot Blog

Amazing Tea and Teaware to wow your senses.

Do you like your tea with a blonde, brunette or a smoke?

  

Lithuanian born artist Rimas VisGirda depicts attitude, fashion, fads and urban living with teapots and cups.  Using porcelain and china paint, he transforms his ceramic pieces into cubistic cartoon-like characters.  Notice how he uses the spout of the teapot to extend the presence of smoke from the lit cigarette.  He also makes sure to adorn all of his female characters with red painted lips, blue eye shadow and earrings.  He titles his teapots just as sassy as they appear.  VisGirda calls this one "Smoking Blonde."

 

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TRICKS THE EYE ...

Some unique teapots...

Mao Tea by Steven Hansen
STEVE HANSEN's pots appear to be metal and have interesting themes to them ... this series "Politics and Propaganda"

Look Ahead Tpot by Barbara Frey
BARBARA FREY's porcelain pots look like stones.
Both even more amazing in person!

 

 

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Designer Tea Infusers

 

This sterling silver tea infuser with cabochons and gold accenting was made for one of Kevin Ard's clients.  The designer starts with a single sheet of sterling silver or gold then applies jewels and detailed patterns according to each commissioned order.  Should you wish to put this on your gift list, first consider the base price of a custom-made one cup tea infuser, £1609; labor costs for ornamental complexity and desired jewels are extra.       

Tea Infused Eggs

 

I have discovered that I am not the only one in a quandary for unique centerpieces.  Ellen Easton's "Tea Infused Marble Eggs" is an all natural, simple yet elegant idea.  Boiled eggs are rolled in a towel to create cracks in the shells then placed in water and black tea leaves for one hour.  After chilling, the shells are removed to reveal a shiny marbleized decoration, which can later be used in a salad.    

Teapot Museum

One of the worlds largest collections of novelty teapots can be found at the fascinating Teapot Museum in Conwy, North Wales. The museum was established by Paul and Christine Gibbs back in 1989 and now houses over 1000 different teapots.

 

We also particulary loved this ode to a cup of tea that hangs there:

"When the world is all at odds
And the mind is all at sea
Then cease the useless tedium
And brew a cup of tea.
There is magic in its fragrance
There is solace in its taste
And then laden moments vanish
Somehow into space
And the world becomes a lovely thing
There's beauty as you'll see
All because you briefly stopped
To brew a cup of tea".

 

Teacup Chandeliers

    

From her South London studio Madeline Boulesteix converts humble teacups into lavish chandeliers.  She keeps a collection of shiny metal objects, glassware, beads and other items found at ship yards, charity shops and car boot sales.  Madeline believes these objects are just waiting to be liberated from there once domestic uses.   

Pouting fish Teapots

                                

Perhaps it is the subtropical atmosphere where artist Judy Freeman resides or just her vibrate personality but her teapots are fantastically vibrant and unique compared to traditional British teapots. Each reef fish teapot has plump colorful lips and takes weeks to complete. They are hand formed in constructive stages, fired at least twice then decorated with bling, such as Floridian rhinestone sunglasses and dorsal earrings.     

Tea with the beauty of the sea

 

Above is a beautiful under water photograph of an anemone.To fully appreciate the beauty of anemones,  L'Objet, a company that combines nature with tableware, has duplicated these magnificent marine invertebrates as part of their Oceania collection.  Without putting on a wet suit, the teapot shown below with multiple glazes and 14k gold may be the closest you ever come to having tea with the sea.

 

 

 

Bright and Cheerey-Eyed Teacups

 

If having your morning tea in one of these cups does not awake you, perhaps you should return to bed.  These wide eyed cups and mugs look ready to inspire you with a joke or share a special secret that is sure to bring joy.  The cups are the creations of Mark Switzer, an American artist, whose whimsical tea sets can be purchased at the gift gallery, Avventura located in New York.

Tea with Toulouse-Lautrec

 Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901) exhibited his first cabaret paintings in Montmartre cafes. 

Soon thereafter, he was flooded with commissioned work to create lithographs for posters and illustrations as promotional tools for newly opened tea houses, the theatre and bars. 

He created 737 paintings, 275 watercolors, 363 prints and posters and 5,084 drawings within 20 years.  Unfortunately the artist drank more alcohol instead of tea and died of complications at the age of 36.  I find it apropos that artist Kelvin Chin has created three miniature collectable teapots in honor of Toulouse-Lautrec.

  

Tiny Teapots

  

Several years ago Josef Klingler, Jr. visited Kasama, Japan while on holiday.  He was fascinated by some of the local teapot artists working on their potter's wheels.  They allowed him to throw some clay on the wheel and were amazed at his instant skill and talent. 

Inspired by the Japanese artists, he added several pottery classes to his curriculum as a student while at The Art Institute of Chicago.  Yet Josef prefers to use his innate creative abilities.  His clay terra cotta teapots are only 2 to 8 inches in size.  Josef admits that even he is surprised at some of his work.   

    

 

Recycling Tea Tins

 Because I have too many empty tea tins and for some reason cannot discard them, I began searching for ways to recycle.  To my surprise, I found some very thrifty, creative and crafty ideas for using old tins.  If you find yourself in a similar situation, think twice before tossing them.  (For each recycling project, links are included.)

Recycled Tea Tin Covered Note Book 

    

 

 

 

 

Tea Tin Table Centerpiece

                  Paper Covered Tea Tin for Storage Usage

 

Silversmith Tea Set

This contemporary tea set, crafted by silversmiths Michael and Maureen Banner, is hand wrought with sterling silver, cloisonné enamel lids and Bubinga wood.  

Hand wrought is a process in which a flat piece of silver is shaped and decorated only with hand tools and non-mechanical equipment.  Cloisonné is an ancient Chinese metalworking technique in which silver wires are hand formed in a design then inlaid with enamel.  Bubinga is a rare wood with reddish color from West Africa.  Understanding the various techniques and media used faciliates greater appreciation of the tea set and its value, priced at $29,000 USD.  This couple's stylish teapots and tea sets have been included in various collector's books and magazines.   

Orange Flowering Tea with Orange Teacups

 I can just picture myself watching my favorite  Orange Osmanthus Blooming Tea unfurl in my crystal clear hand blown teapot, then pouring this precious liquid into one of these bright orange teacups by Mustardseed & Moonshine.   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This South African based  ceramic company begat from the admiration of flowers, including the Camellia Sinensis (tea plant).  Their artists, from around the world, specialize in designing unique, ceramic microwavable, dishwasher and oven safe tableware.  

There are other flowering teas and teacups in matching colours should orange not be your cup of tea.         

Tea Purses

A creative and unique gift for someone who collects handbags and is partial to a lovely cup of tea. Especially if the teapot handbag was stuffed with assorted flowering tea's or a tin of loose leaf!

 

Set your clock for tea

 

These whimsical tea clocks are created by avid tea drinker, Michelle Allen.  The teacups on the clocks are pendulums which swing back and forth.  The clock bases are made of wood or resin and are hand painted plus individually adorned.   Her tea clocks come in a variety of colours, all which can enhance a bland painted wall, giving it just that needed touch of panache.  These clocks indicate that any time is a good time for tea!  

 

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A stunning Tea set for the Connoisseur

 

Franz porcelain is known for combining classic art nouveau design styles with a traditional Chinese spirit.  This magnificent collection, entitled "Phoenician Flight," was released just this year and is made only from the finest Chinese clays and glazes.  Each piece is hand sculpted and painted.  Notice how the bird on the sacuer appears to be in flight; this is considered a three dimensional signature of Franz porcelains.  Even though the teapot and teacup are functional, these pieces deserve a grandiose display by tea enthusiasts.        

 

Elephants love tea!

I have never associated the elephant as a warm and cozy creature but this one is an exception.  The cotton base of this tea cozy was hand woven then embroidery stitched with silk threads.  The intricate detailing and continuous pattern was created by using a thin "aree" needle, ensuring full coverage of the fabric, a sheen appearance and is an indicator of quality.  

 

This tea cosy would certainly add some much needed beauty to my old, worn out teapot that I cannot seem to discard.  

Tea Tree Bonsai

I visited my aunt last weekend who just so happens to be a bonsai gardener.  She was so proud of her newest bonsai cultivation, the New Zealand Tea Tree Bonsai.  Granted it will not produce tea leaves for steeping, however its beauty and the skill of growing such can certainly be appreciated by us tea drinkers who are in awe by the artisans who sew flowering teas. 

      Growing this tea tree takes skill and nurturing.  It requires enormous sunlight, detests colder temperatures and is quite fussy about keeping its roots moist; if not watered properly it can die within 4 hours.  This bonsai will die if it is repotted, pruned and wired at the same time.  It takes discipline to learn the art of growing the tree just as it does to meticulously create teas that flower and the hand blown glass teapots that hold them.  

Recycling teapots, sugar bowls and saucers

 Since 1989 the Jangling Jack boys, Chris and Steve, have been combining home décor vintage objects with used industrial parts to create unique garden and interior art pieces.  On their Australian bush land residence, the men extend the lives of unwanted silver teapots, sugar bowls, teaspoons, cups and saucers.   The whimsical creatures shown here are a few of my favourite examples of these fabulous recycled tea set objects.    

  

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