April 20, 2022

Enchanted Creators: Marissa Kinsler & Fairy Tale Teas, By Kelly Jarvis

There is nothing quite so soothing as a cup of tea. Marissa Kinsler, the creator, founder, and lead Fairy Godmother of Fairy Tale Teas, has combined the traditional comforts of tea with the magic and beauty of fairy tales. With teas such as Once Upon a Time (a hazelnut and French vanilla crème black tea inspired by Cinderella), Happily Ever After (a strawberry and Sakura Blossom white tea meant to evoke the bouquet of a fairy tale wedding), and Enchanted Slumber (Sleeping Beauty’s own herbal blend with notes of lemon and raspberry rose jam), customers can transport themselves to storybook realms with every sip.  

Marissa’s website is a feast for the senses and her blog posts are filled with recipes, teatime etiquette, playlists for steeping tea, and fanciful articles like Snow White’s Fall Activities and Sleeping Beauty’s Evening Routine. If you need a little extra magic in your life, you can purchase some gold pixie dust to stir into your cup, turning your everyday teatime routine into a ritual of enchantment. 

I had the chance to chat with Marissa about her inspirations and future business plans. Enjoy! 

1. Tell us about your background. What inspired you to create a business selling Fairy Tale Teas? 

I have always been fairytale obsessed! While Fairy Tale Teas is in no way inspired by Disney, I would say that it is where my affinity for fairytales began. When I was little, I begged my parents to have pretend tea parties with me - I would dress in a princess costume and set a very tiny table with my kid-sized tea set. Sometimes my mom would even make delicious finger sandwiches and pour apple juice or sweet tea into my tiny teacups, and I felt like a princess. 

Fast forward a few decades and I was going to college for marketing. I had realized that I had a real knack for branding and making things beautiful. I wanted to hone that skill along with my business mind. Ever since I was little, I knew that princesses were going to play a huge role in my future, so I decided to start there. One day I thought, “What activity is more evocative of princesses than having tea?” and thus Fairy Tale Teas was born. 

2. In addition to your Once Upon a TimeHappily Ever After, and Enchanted Slumber blends, your site offers Lady of the Moon Tea. Tell us a little bit about the flavor and how it relates to the fairy tale that inspired it. 

Lady of the Moon, our most recent blend, is a jasmine green tea that tastes like ginger poached pear and lychee preserves. It is inspired by a Chinese fairytale recorded during the Tang Dynasty and entitled The Legend of Chang’e. We wanted the tea to celebrate this story along with its country of origin.  

Green tea was the first type of tea discovered in China, so we figured that this was a great place to start. The fairy tale tells the story of how Chang’e came to be goddess of the moon and mentions that the moon has a pear orchard on it which is tended by the Jade Rabbit – a character most known for mixing something called “the elixir of life”.  With this information in mind, I researched ancient Chinese health elixirs, and I came across a recipe from the Tang Dynasty that inspired the rest of the flavors that went into this blend.  

3. I read that your favorite fairy tale is The Twelve Dancing Princesses. Why do you enjoy this tale, and what flavors might a tea inspired by it include? Do you have plans for any future Fairy Tale Tea flavors?  

The Twelve Dancing Princesses is my absolute favorite tale because of the imagery! As someone who is constantly pouring over fairytales looking for flavor inspiration, I am always delighted to find a story that is full of food descriptions. The princesses travel in the dead of night through an enchanted forest and enter a ballroom where they dance all night, only stopping for a sumptuous feast of candied flowers, wafers, and cracknels. A tea inspired by it would certainly have to include these flowers and it would have to be highly caffeinated (to fuel you for multiple nights of dancing).  

We have three more tea blends set to be released this year! The next one is inspired by an Irish fairytale called Yellow Lilly and it is a wonderful Irish breakfast tea that tastes like a spiced Beltane cake! The next 5 years of fairy tales teas are planned out, but I cannot say too much. The only other thing that I can tell you is that we have dubbed 2023 “The Year of the Mermaid”. I cannot wait! 

4. In addition to being the founder of Fairy Tale Teas, you are also the Lead Fairy Godmother of your company. How does this title influence your work? Does thinking of yourself as a fairy godmother help you to bring magic to your customers’ lives?   

It helps me in my creative process to have lore to fall back on. With everything we create I am reminded to look at the finished product and ask myself, “Is this something that a fairy godmother would create?”  or “Does this look like something from a fairytale? An enchanted forest?”  I think that ensuring all our products are as magical as they possibly can be is what makes Fairy Tale Teas a special experience for all our customers (we call them our friends and fae). 

Friends and fae who visit Fairy Tale Teas will be treated to aesthetic images of swirling tea, thrifted teacups, and pressed, dried, or fresh flowers that seem gathered from enchanted forests, all crafted by Marissa and her team of Fairy Godmothers. Let the site sweep you away into a world of magic and let us know if you find your perfect cup of tea.  

Kelly Jarvis teaches classes in literature, writing, and fairy tale at Central Connecticut State University, The University of Connecticut, and Tunxis Community College. She lives, happily ever after, with her husband and three sons in a house filled with fairy tale books. She is also Enchanted Conversation’s special project’s writer.

All photos courtesy of Marissa Kinsler & Fairy Tale Teas


Mandy said...

I'm so glad I read this! I love tea and am checking out the Fairy Tale Teas website right now. :) This is an amazing idea! Thank you!

Unknown said...

I can't wait to cuddle up with a warm blanket, a cup of Happily Ever After sprinkled with gold pixie dust and one of Kelly Jarvis' enchanting fairy tales!

Anonymous said...

Going forward I shall only drink tea laced with gold pixie dust!

Anonymous said...

This is an amazing concept! A beautiful combination of tales and teas! Cannot wait to try Lady of the Moon!

Lynden Wade said...

How enchanting! I shall be exploring the fairy tale teas website more. Thank you, Marissa and Kelly!

Kelly Jarvis said...

Thank you for reading, everyone! Enjoy your tea! <3