Interview: Bird & Blend Tea Co
Bird & Blend Tea Co is a fairly young, happiness spreading, independent, award winning, unique Tea Mixology Company on a mission to make people happy with tea. I was lucky enough to interview the company about their tea and shop.
Hello! Thank you so much for letting me interview you. How are you?
I'm great thank you.
Tell us a little bit about your background.
We're a small, fairly young, independent company, started by a lovely couple called Krisi & Mike. They started up the company in their bedroom, hand blending and packing teas and selling them at small markets across the country! It was when they sold their blends at a market in Brighton that they fell in love with the city and found the perfect spot to open up their first shop!
I adore your business. What made you decide to set up Bird & Blend Tea Co?
Firstly, thank you so much! Mike & Krisi were living out in Canada, where flavoured tea is a really big thing and it occurred to them that the UK was really missing out, so they decided to bring some of that magic back here!
What does your shop sell?
Tea! We specialise in blending, so we're all about having fun with tea - we mix a whole variety of tea types with an eclectic array of herbs, spices, flowers and sometimes even vegan marshmallows! We're trying to do something different and sometimes, that means making a delicate cup of white tea taste just like a Cherry Bakewell!
Why did you call your shop Bird & Blend Tea Co?
There's a skiing term called a bluebird day - it's a day where conditions are absolutely perfect, the sky is blue, the snow is fresh and you're filled with the feeling that absolutely anything is possible. We wanted to bring a little slice of this back to the UK! And of course, blending is at the heart of what we do, so we had to include that!
What are your best selling flavoured teas?
We have a variety of best selling blends, including a beautiful green tea with peppermint and lime, lovingly called MojiTEA! If you ever get a chance to pop into one of our shops, we shake this with ice, a squeeze of fresh lime and a handful of fresh mint leaves - it's heavenly on a sunny Brighton day! Some of our other best sellers include our classic Great British Cuppa, the zesty Strawberry Lemonade and the truly snuggle-worthy Gingerbread Chai!
Why has social media been an important platform for you to use?
Social media helps us to connect to tea drinkers EVERYWHERE: from the wonderful regulars that Instagram the Matcha latte that they just picked up from the Manchester shop to the family in New Zealand who just received their monthly Tea Club subscription box, social media has given us the opportunity to connect with so many people. It also allows us to be inspired by other amazing indie brands that we love too!
Who inspires your shop?
There are an endless stream of indie companies that we LOVE. But the main inspiration for us has absolutely got to be our BB fans! We love to hear what they think about new blends, about upcoming collections and about what we're posting about on social media (in case anyone hasn't checked us out yet, we're all about the tea dogs and colourful iced teas!)
Do you have any favourite items from your shop that you adore at the moment?
At this moment in time, cold brews are an essential - it's sunny, so we've gotta have a big old cold brew of Cococabana Coola on the go! Or our all new Tea Pendants - who doesn't want to wear their tea, while they're drinking their tea?!
What do we hope to see in this up and coming year for your Instagram page?
Well, we've got some AMAZING blends coming up over the next year, so there'll be some sneaky peeks of those soon, plus keep an eye out for some old faves that may be making an appearance. Oh! And dogs! (And cats too!)
What's your typical working day?
The typical BB day? Each day here is pretty unlike the other! From tasting, naming and experimenting with new, upcoming blends, to leading Tea Mixology Workshops in the evening, it's safe to say our days are always varied. One constant has got to be that big mug of Matcha in the morning, to really get you pumped for a full day of tea!
What's been the biggest struggle in getting your business off the ground?
Well, we've been so fortunate to have the most wonderful communiTEA of fans, supporters and staff TEAm, that even when we've felt like we were expanding so rapidly, we always knew that we had their support!
Do you have any exciting plans for this year?
We've always got exciting plans! We have new collections out for each season and preparations are well underway for this year's Christmas range - trust me, it's going to be BREWlliant!
Do you have any advice for anyone starting their own shop?
It's so vital to have the support of the community around you - speak to local businesses, make friends with those around you (it certainly helps if you can invite them in for a cuppa!)
What's next for Bird & Blend Tea Co?
We've got some cracking projects coming up over the next year! Plus we're always interested in hearing where our fans want our next Bird & Blend shop to open up!
What's the best piece of creative advice you've ever been given
Never give up! And when it feels like everything's getting too much, sit down and have a cuppa.