There’s a lot of Alice themed activity going on at the minute, piggy-backing the release of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland film.
First up – Alice Temperley’s new ALICE range. The Alice reference is not technically related to the film but Temperley has not been shy to leverage the timely Alice in Wonderland associations of their brand, using pack of cards designs in their look books and co-ordinating their launch party with the first showing of the film.
I’m not complaining though, as I was one of the lucky girls to receive a free ALICE t-shirt (see photo below), delivered to me by the ‘Alice bus’ that was driving around London to promote the launch of this new collection. Clever marketing. Topshop did a similar thing when they opened their New York store. However, the volume of squeals from the American fashionistas chasing the Topshop bus down the streets of New York were a far cry from the polite queue of British girls waiting patiently for the ALICE bus on a typically grey winter day at Spitalfields market. Good job the free t-shirts were so fresh and fun!
On other Alice-themed bits and bobs, The Sanderson Hotel have introduced their very own Madhatter’s tea party, featuring pineapple lollipops that change temperature in your mouth, Queen of Hearts teacakes and a fruit tart topped with the White Rabbit’s pocket watch. I think it’s only fitting that Elle Tea tries this one out at some point…
On the subject of the Madhatter’s tea, I was brushing up on my tea-geek knowledge by listening to an interesting programme on radio 4 all about tea. They were talking about how when tea was first introduced to England, it represented refinement, elegance and femininity. Whereas coffee houses were raucous male environments, tea was associated with polite, lady-like conversation. A tea party, complete with porcelain cups and delicate cakes, then became the embodiment of genteel culture. As a result, when Lewis Carroll created the Madhatter’s tea party – a deconstructed version of this civilised tradition – it was the ultimate symbol of the dissolution of sanity and society in Wonderland.
This crazy bell jar, complete with artfully placed hammer, feels like just the kind of odd, deconstructed object that should be on the Madhatter’s tea party table (it was actually featured as part of Selfridges’ Alice in Wonderland exhibit).
And for the last on-the-Alice bandwagon example, check out these quirky necklaces by jeweller Tom Binns, for ‘Disney Couture’. Yes – I find this notion just as bizzare as you do but am willing to let it slide given that the necklace is so cute. Reminds me of one I have myself- thanks Sally!