The Gardener’s Mug: A Teacup with Built-in Tea Infuser
The perfect teacup is actually more of a mug. Either way, it was inspired by my actual love of fresh tea herbs from the garden, gently soothing my weary soul after a long day. However, it all started about a decade ago…
About 10 years ago I went to Beijing on business – how very fancy of me, yes! I was in a tea ceremony with the US Ambassador to China, and they served us loose leaf tea in a cup with a built-in tea infuser pocket and lid. I loved the gesture and came home with two of my very own teacups.
I didn’t touch my little tea infuser teacups (unless you include packing them and moving them about five times) until this year when I started growing my own tea. Mint to be specific – so very basic of me, but impactful nonetheless. Mint tea calms a tummy after dinner and really just gave me a moment outside this Summer to connect with my garden and myself, regrouping after the bedtime madness.
I started using my Chinese tea infuser mugs and shared that on Instagram. I had never been bombarded with so many DMs in my life! I went to search for some similar mugs online for people and couldn’t find ANY. Like, what?!
So, I had them made.
The inspiration behind the design is very much a chic cottage garden farmhouse vibe (throw in all the trend words). Really though, I wanted a sophisticated, yet handmade look. I wanted a lid, a thumb rest (my original mug has that), that tea infuser build-in and a pretty yet neutral color. We tested out about four prototypes to get the lid, handle, foot, and herb insert just right, and now here we are!
Keri Granda of Sift Ceramics is the ceramic artist that I chose to work with, and she is a mother, a wife, a gardener, and a talent at the potter’s wheel! Because of the labor of love that goes into these mugs, they are a bit of a higher price point.
We consider them heirloom teacups, and they are custom-made-to-order pieces that are truly meant to be special.
I hope you love these teacup mugs as much as I do, and please tag me in any photos that you take!
P.S.: they’re dishwasher safe. Huzzah!
You can get your very own tea mug here.
And for info on how to grow your own tea, go here.