Pretty Tea Tins

May 27, 2008

I’ve been hopping around Boston’s Chinatown scouring markets for tea tins to use in my new kitchen. I’m installing open shelving and decided that with all things exposed I should consider storing the pretty products there (and the ugly stuff in the lower cabinets). I found a few tins in Boston but I felt a little uninspired since the designs were pretty generic looking. Nothing came even close to the lovely visions of colorful tea tins dancing in my head. Then…

Pretty Tea Tins
This lovely photo appeared today in my flickr stream. The very dear Anahata Katkin posted this after finding hers at Pearl River in NYC! Anahata was looking for tea tins too. I just mentioned Pearl River in January when a reader wrote in looking for Chinese lanterns so I’m not sure why I didn’t think of them as a resource. This is why we all need our web friends. The best part about the tins Anahata found is that they are exactly what I wanted, are priced under $3 each, and they’ll ship ’em to me so I don’t have to drive down to Chinatown in New York. Not that I mind but it’s super convenient to shop them online. Anahata thank you!

Pretty Tea Tins
Outside of storing your tea in them, you can also store office supplies or use them for q-tips and cotton balls in the bathroom. I like to use them as vases but tea tins tend to leak so I always place fresh flowers in a juice glass and then conceal the glass inside of the tin allowing for the flowers to peek out.

OR If you are feeling crafty, try Lilac Moon’s recycling project. She took tea tins that would have otherwise landed in the trash and taking pretty papers and handmade stickers with stamped images, she designed her own tea tins. How clever, inexpensive, and easy!

Pretty Tea Tins
You can view more photos of this project here. Oh, and here’s a link to her blog and etsy shop. Thank goodness for our web friends and all of the constant sharing that takes place.

(image top: ana bottom: pearl river)


  • Reply Julie May 27, 2008 at 11:49 pm

    Thank you for creating your lovely blog. I find myself dropping by several times a week and getting the books you suggest and browsing the sites you recommend. I love your blog and wish you all the best on your new house/town.
    Julie P.

  • Reply things are better with a parrott May 28, 2008 at 1:45 am

    these are amazing! thanks for sharing about pearl river! I have been on the hunt for tea tins as well and always have my eyes open. i actually just found one thrifting today :)

  • Reply S.HOPtalk May 28, 2008 at 3:57 am

    I’ve been on the hunt for tea tins as well. Great finds? and I absolutely LOVE the DIY tutorial. Thanks so much!

  • Reply Lobster and swan May 28, 2008 at 9:47 am

    love these DIY tins. so pretty-fabulous idea!

  • Reply Anonymous May 28, 2008 at 10:37 am

    I have tens of those tins, once they were easy to find here in Prague, unfortunately it’s not true any longer but I have saved all of them and they are perfect containers for anything. The tea is quite good too, I was especially fond of this one:
    >>>russian tea, black and relatively strong, great red tin too

    >>plch, (lurker)

  • Reply Julie May 28, 2008 at 12:29 pm

    Beautiful tea tins! They would look absolutely lovely on open shelves!

  • Reply SimplyGrove May 28, 2008 at 3:36 pm

    These tins are Gorgeous!!!!

  • Reply Pr?t ? Voyager May 28, 2008 at 5:22 pm

    Fabulous tins! I love the Asian accents.


  • Reply emadethis May 28, 2008 at 10:49 pm

    That’s a wonderful idea with the tea tins. I have several that are less than attractive. I never know what to do with pretty papers even though I love them. Thanks for the idea!

  • Reply emadethis May 28, 2008 at 10:50 pm

    What a lovely idea for the tea tins. I have several sitting around that are less than attractive. I never know what to do with pretty papers though I love them so. Thanks for the wonderful idea!

  • Reply Jinnie May 29, 2008 at 12:52 am

    Woah, it’s my tea tins! What a nice surprise.. Thank you, Holly. ^_^


  • Reply tracey May 29, 2008 at 1:07 am

    Beautiful tins. I would use them in my office and feel like such a world traveller! Very colorful.

  • Reply SugarPickle May 29, 2008 at 4:16 am

    Beautiful tins!! I love your blog…will be reading regularly!


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