Sunday, 18 October 2015

Font Sunday: Tea tins

The Design Museum in London plays host to a photo-sharing afternoon on Twitter every Sunday, all about fonts in different contexts. There's a different subject each week, and people share photos of interesting fonts.

Today's subject was tea packaging, which was the perfect excuse for me to grab a few of my tea tins, chop some bits from the garden, and join in the font photography. You may have noticed that I am a big fan of pretty containers (especially anything Tiptree) and of good tea!

There isn't much flowering in the garden now. I had some hollyhocks, but they've been eaten by caterpillars or some other hungry so-and-so. (The Very Hungry Caterpillar seems like an adorable story until you notice the downside of hungry caterpillars). But I had fountain grass and bunny-tail grass, sedum, a few asters, salvia, and a couple of David Austin 'Cariad' roses.

The tall tin is from Postcard Teas - a lovely shop on Dering Street, just off New Bond Street. The owner, Tim d'Offay, goes to the tea plantations himself to see how the tea is grown and to check the conditions in which the workers are living. The teas are delicious, and if you go to the shop, Tim or one of the other lovely people working there will make you a cup of the tea to try before you decide which to buy.

The shorter tins are Wedgwood. As well as teapots and cups, the company also makes beautiful tins of tea, in different shades of blue.

The pink Cariad rose was especially welcome after yesterday's rugby result. I've never understood rugby, but after living with lots of Welsh rugby fans in Swansea, if I had to support anyone, it would always be Wales!

Finally, here are George Orwell's instructions for making a good cup of tea. The article was called 'A Nice Cup of Tea' after the phrase that brings us such comfort, but I think "good" is more appropriate. Also, the phrase "nice cup of tea" sometimes reminds me of the film Vera Drake; not very comforting! I agree with most of what Orwell says, particularly that the best tea comes from India and Sri Lanka (I am a bit biased, though), that it should be very strong and leave you feeling "wiser, braver or more optimistic after drinking it".

I'm about to embark on a research project for university, and I know the one thing that will help me to get through marathon study sessions is an endless cup of tea!

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