Studio Strata

Barcelona

There are some places you dream about and because you dream about them so much they will never live up to what you imagined in your head. But, both times I visited Spain it beyond exceeded my dreams. The first time I went with my cousin and brother and I think it was a good mix of all our interests. The second time I brought Nihar and that trip ended our time in Europe which turned out to be one my favorite things we have done together. Although it was unbearably hot the ENTIRE time. Even when we would come home at 2am we would be sweating profusely. There were certain things I didn’t want to miss and we had two day trips planned because we were there for eight days. If we get to spend a couple hours in a coffee shop or cafe, I think we have spent enough time in that city. Enough time to just be and really experience the culture by people watching and enjoying each others company. Feeling like a local for a little while. I feel like Nihar and I always have work to get done and it doesn’t stop when we are on vacation. So given some time in a coffee shop is always welcome and makes coming back from vacation easier. 

This post is about highlighting all the spots we went to - coffee shops, food spots, and bars. 

Restaurants:

Sesamo

Flax and Kale

Rasoterra

CatBarCAT

La Fabrica

Veg World India

Teresa Carles

The Green Spot

Coffee Shops:

Sabio Infante

Onna Cafe

Santans Corner

Espai Joliu

SKYE Coffee Co.

Nomad Roaster’s Home

Bars

Chupitos

Bareconleta Sangria Bar

Mortiz

Barcelona Beer Company

Gallery

Maxio

.. .Fruition is an amazing thing. 

Right before I left is really when my friendship with Tea truly deepened and blossomed. I mean we had been hanging out and having these “business meetings” for about a year, but we hadn’t been given the time to ever just be and hang out in each others presence. I asked Tea to write a little something on our collab and here it is:

On this journey of creation and empowerment, I put a lot of thought into what wearable art would be for me. Thought into how I can break restrictions in the creative process. Thought into how I can make more art from art. I wanted truly unique pieces, visual thought pieces even, that would free creative expression for both myself as the creator and my clients. 

I feel as though art and bespoke fashion age well, as they can be timeless. With this, I thought it would be amazing if I can get fabric created with my own artwork and of artists that I appreciate. 

I’d say the universe recognizes real intentions, and brought us all together to show us how real our intentions are and can be. Meeting Meghan and learning about what she was already doing with art and fabric made my thoughts real for me. Confirmation that I was going in the right direction. Seeds planted grew into a collaboration where our art doesn’t stop at what we do individually. Collaboration allows us to give layers of life and power to the art we share with the world, empowering the world even more. On the most basic level as artists, Strata and Threads share this motif of empowerment, and this is why it works. - Tea Montgomery

The way he strings together thoughts through words has always made sense to me. I asked him recently through a WhatsAap message “how are you always so on point all the time!?” His response was simply “Some things just make sense to people.” His responses are always well thought out and the few words he uses are every time spot on for the conversation. As I have gotten to know him, I have been exposed to the various assets that embody Tea Montgomery. Almost every day I am still learning something new. If there is something I am certain of it is this, our friendship will never be boring. 

We had a Google Hangout interview with Lucy Gellman not too long ago, click here to view: https://www.newhavenarts.org/arts-paper/articles/studio-strata-threads-up 

Threads by Tea X Studio Strata

There are some people out there who just bring people together. My dear friends Eliezer Santiago and Tiphani Benbow are those people. I’m not even sure how it came up in conversation, but I’m sure it was related to the fabric I was designing - Elie mentioned “you’ve got to meet my friend Tea.” So there we were at Koffee? On Audobon St in New Haven and I just felt like it was the right moment for all of this creative energy to meet. Tiph and Elie ended up buying a one way ticket to Thailand, but Tea and I have continued to grow and develop both our friendship, but also this collaboration. 

With a tag line of wearable art created to empower and inspire, I knew this was the perfect fit of a designer for me to work with. 

Upon meeting Tea, I felt like I was taken aback by this air of coolness that engulfs the space he takes up. As we have continued to get to know each other and continue our “business meetings” we have really grown into forming a beautiful friendship. A friendship and partnership of designer and his muse. His humble nature paired with a presence that just makes a statement wherever he goes is something to reckon with. We make a good team. I think I’m a little more outgoing with making the connections and networking where as Tea literally has to do nothing and it just happens automatically. 

I can’t exactly remember when we met or how he picked out some fabric to buy from me, but it just always flowed nicely. He’s bought many yards of fabric from me now over time and I’m always playing a game of “where’s waldo?” But instead “where’s studio strata?” with searching for my fabric. 

Recently, we both attended the Essence Streetstyle Festival in the Brooklyn Navy Yard for New York Fashion Week. Tea and another friend Jason were both wearing outfits designed and constructed by Tea with Studio Strata fabric. I threw on a Threads lace cardigan with my Erica Zapp necklace, and hat from a clothes swap and was ready to take on this event in the dreary grey rain. Damn, did we make a statement and a little bit of noise. We were getting stopped all over the place for people to photograph us. At first I definitely felt a little shy, but a little bit into the event I think I found my groove and got into it.