Aware by Tekuno

Reflections on tea, art and culture.

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Packaging Designed to Live Multiple Lives

Designers Esteban Jauregui and Patricia Lee have created packaging for Tekuno, a San Francisco-based company whose aim is to showcase the quiet yet expansive world of Japanese teas.

The design features a recycled paper wraparound, a sticker, and a hand-lacquered tea tin from 110-year old Japanese tea canister company Kotodo Takahashi. The packaging was designed for Tekuno’s seasonal line of teas, which the company sources each year through a careful selection process with tea farms throughout Japan.

Each piece of the packaging is modular and designed to be repurposed: the canister becomes durable, reusable kitchen storage; the sticker is included unattached so that the user can showcase it elsewhere; and the wraparound can be used as a bookmark—or at least composted.

Jauregui writes, “When I first set out, I thought about how to translate Tekuno’s approach of “teas for quiet moments” to the packaging itself. The idea of slowing down and sharing tea with someone stuck with me, so I wanted the packaging to also be ‘quiet’ and intentional. I kept things separate and uncluttered.”

The typography Lee designed mirrors this approach, utilizing scale and direction to create a type-based visual that would be simple yet highly intentional. Including the Japanese typesetting on the right serves to identify the tea’s place of origin, as well as to recognize the identity and influence of the philosophies that guide it. It was important to Lee that the typography and layout let each tea in Tekuno’s collection showcase its uniqueness. She minimized brand elements and showcased tasting notes, descriptions, and sourcing information.

The sticker, partially hidden by the wraparound, reveals a contemporary composition by Los Angeles-based painter Adrian Kay Wong. Wong worked with Tekuno to develop its logo and muse: a woman enjoying a serene moment with tea. Its colors—deep salmon, seafoam green and soft teal—are meant to evoke the tranquil stillness of nature that is reflected in a cup of tea.

The focused intention found in each element of the package design echoes the restrained, thoughtful beauty of Japanese tea culture.

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Sincere thank you to:

Esteban Jauregui—package design & photography
Patricia Lee—typography
Adrian Kay Wong—artwork

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