Brillig & Borogove have curated a collection of decorative items, wallpapers and collectibles which celebrates the beauty, functionality and history of the camellia sinensis plant.
Named for the botanist and missionary Georg Josef Kamel, the camellia is native to China where it grows wild.
Throughout the 18th century, the bulk of England's tea was imported from China (via the East India Company), however in the 1830s the first tea estates were established in the north eastern Indian state of Assam.
These vast plantations were part of the British colonisation of India and Sri Lanka, with teas like Darjeeling and Ceylon ending the British Empire's dependence on Chinese imports.
Today the camellia sinensis plant is cultivated commercially in India, Kenya, Sri Lanka, China, Japan and other countries. The tender leaves of the plant are harvested to make white, green and black teas. Some of the most sought after tea comes from the hilly slopes of Darjeeling.
The commercial activity of tea making and the cultural practice of tea drinking both have a deep connection to Brillig & Borogove’s brand ethos and identity.
“Brillig” is a fictional nonsensical word coined by Lewis Carroll and first appears in his novel 'Through The Look Glass' in the poem ‘Jabberwocky’. The word originates from the verb bryl or boil or brew and refers to the time of day when one sets about getting things ready for supper, Carrol envisioned this to be around “four o’clock in the afternoon” (or as we like to say: time to put the kettle on and have a brew).
More to follow...