Thursday, December 5, 2013

The very best lightweight gifts to post faraway for Christmas 2013

Early December is the time to send  your 2013 Christmas gifts on their way to faraway places.

Here's a list of some  our best  NZ made gifts in-store, plus some old favourites, that are all lightweight, so you spend your money on the gift, not the postage. As always, we will wrap beautifully, hand-write in the card, and send them on their way.....and we knock the GST off if we post them overseas.

1. The Metal Bird Tree Art  Collection $69.00 are fantastic metal sculptures that bring native NZ birds to a tree near you, where-ever you live in the world.Available in Tui, Fantail and Woodpigeon

Fantail Tree Sculpture $69.00

2. A lovely set of Pewter Wine Charms, featuring a little slice of New Zealand. $25.00 for a set of 6.
Pewter NZ Wine Charms $25.00

3. Very Kiwi Christmas Tree Decorations, featuring a Paua Angel, a Pohutukawa Angel, and a Kowhai Angel $59.80
Kiwi Christmas Tree Decorations $59.80

4. Sterling Silver Earrings including the lovely Koru Etch, Puriri, and Kowhai all $75.00 per pair
Koru Etch Silver Earrings $75.00
Puriri Silver Earrings $75.00

Thursday, November 14, 2013

We have gone to the Birds...

There's a new flock in town

Tui Sculpture

Just flown in, native NZ bird sculptures (A4 size) ready to sit on a branch near by.

They're designed with love and  laser cut from steel. Simply hammer the spike into a branch or timber, and there you have a little piece of the NZ bush, designed to  become part of nature as it turns a deep rust brown. Choose between a cheeky fantail, Tui,  the Kereru/Woodpigeon,  or make up your own flock.

They are light to send, lovely to look at and bring native birds to the back-yard where ever you live in the world.

Woodpigeon sculpture  in natural rust brown
Fantail sculpture

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Get Fresh with Al Brown

Labour weekend in New Zealand is often a time when people take advantage of a long weekend to go on a road trip trip to visit friends or family. With Labour Weekend fast approaching, this is the book to read.

Get Fresh with Al Brown

The Book 'Get Fresh by Al Brown' is essentially a foodie road trip by celebrated New Zealand chef  Al Brown. Subtitled 'Stories and Recipes from Heartland New Zealand'.

One man, a ute and a frypan head off into the coutryside. From the Far North to Riverton in the deep South, he explores farmers' markets, and meets the growers and foodie artisans from around New Zealand on their home patch. This is the ultimate foodie road trip around New Zealand, and the book wouldn't be complete without a liberal selection of recipes that highlight the the great foods of each region. Gorgeous creations by a master chef, beautifully photographed that make you want to stop the car and start cooking.

Each region featured has a list of  great places to visit (that aren't food related) and features a song by a local artist. Slipped into the back of the book you will find a free CD with Al's Road Trip mix, so you can cruise along or cook to the sound of Fat Freddies Drop and more.

And from another legendary NZ restauranteur, Fleur Sullivan:

                   ' Get Fresh ' is like a 'lonely planet' guide for us to explore, taste and enjoy the culinary     trails of Aotearoa. Out in the provinces we will be welcoming these happy foodies clutching your inspirational book - nau mai, haere mai. Thank you, Al!

We are currently running a Facebook competition where you can win a copy of the book, or purchase one from our website

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Maori Boy Glassware

Maori Boy glass pieces are some of our favourite NZ made gifts. We love the bold use of colour, the beautiful designs, and the fabulous quality of the products. Each year we look forward to see the new fresh designs that Monty and the Maori Boy team have transformed into their lovely art glass. The designs are modern    interpretations of classic Maori designs and themes, and each platter has a 'story' on the back explaining the significance of the design.

Here are some of our favourite pieces, new and old. Remember, we may not show all product shapes (e.g. platters, bowls, clocks, coasters etc), in all the designs and all the colours on our website, but just ask - we can easily source the piece you would like. 
Kawakawa (a medicinal shrub) shown in the lovely white and soft aqua bubbles.

Kowhaiwhai (the painted scroll design often seen on Maori meeting houses), here in Burnt Red & Slate. Also available in Teal & Black

Red 'Awa' (river) and Teal & Black Tawhirimatea (the weather God)

Square platters including Ta Moko (facial tattoo) in green & white (also available in black and driftwood)

Tangaroa (Sea God) in Red & Black (also available in Green & Black)

Monday, July 1, 2013

Maori Carvings - Meanings of the popular designs

Greenstone carvings are unique and special New Zealand gifts. The traditional Maori designs are not just lovely to look at, but carry special significance and meaning. We thank the Auckland museum for providing these interpretations of the more popular designs.

Hei Matau - Fish Hook
Fish Hooks symbolize determination, strength, provision and safe travel over water. The wearer provides friendship, support in time of need and love. As a result prosperity ensues.
Hei Matau pendant

Koru - The Unfolding Fern Frond
The Koru is a symbol of new growth, new beginnings, new life, peace and tranquility. New growth and new life reflect the life cycle, and peace and tranquility.
Koru Pendant

Toki - Adze
The toki symbolizes strength and courage. It was originally used as a carving tool, and is now considered taonga, a treasure that is handed down through the family.
Toki Pendant

Manaia -  The Guardian Spirit
The Manaia is a spiritual guardian and the carrier of supernatural powers. Traditionally depicted with the head of a bird, the body of a man, and the tail of a fish, Te Manaia represents the sky, earth, and sea, and the balance between them.

Hei Tiki
The Hey Tiki is the Maori representation of the human form as a pendant. Hei meaning neck ornament and Tiki meaning human. The wearer of the Hei Tiki is assumed to be clear thinking, perceptive loyal and knowledgeable.
Framed Hei Tiki

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The New Zealand Turkish Delight

Now we reckon this would have to be world first. Feijoa Turkish Delight hand made in Wellington. What a treat for sweet lovers worldwide!

Loukoumi of Wellington are true  foodie artisans, whipping up hand crafted Turkish Delight in the traditional way, and wouldn't dream of using preservatives or gelatine. The results are divine, sweet sweet morsels delicately flavoured using only natural flavours.
 NZ Turkish Delight

New Zealanders get a little nostalgic about Feijoa. Its amazing how that distinctively flavoured green gem, available only a few weeks of the year,  seems to take us back in time to the days when everybody had a tree in their backyard.

When you see the stunning packaging, I think you will agree that the  humble Feijoa has had a style make-over to match up with the soft meltingly delicious Turkish Delight inside. This is a truly winning combination and a very NZ Turkish Delight!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Cast Glass - NZ pieces

We are proud to offer these new cast glass art pieces. Unlike blown-glass art objects, a cast glass piece is a superb, weighty piece of solid crystal glass.
Maori Glass Art Paddle

Cast glass is manufactured by a process that is technically complex to perfect. Solid crystal glass is heated to extremely hot temperatures so it becomes a liquid, and flows into a negative mould. The tricky part is cooling (or annealing) the glass in baby steps over a lengthy period of time so the outer edges of the piece never gets much cooler than the inside, as this would cause the piece to crack.

The resulting glass art is magnificent and very special. These three Maori glass pieces are a notable addition to our selection of glass art NZ gifts. Each comes nestled safely in a custom made wooden box.

Paddle detail
Paddle handle

Maori Waka Prow
Maori Waka

Maori Waka tail section

Cast glass Maori Kete

Friday, May 10, 2013

Postcards from Auckland

Postcards from Auckland Book
Giving Auckland gifts to those visiting Auckland from overseas, as mementos or conference gifts, or for anyone wanting to show off the magnificent City of Sails has just got a whole lot easier.  The recently published  Auckland scenery book "Postcards from Auckland" is jam packed with the 'picture perfect' images as you might find on postcards (each with a little caption), showing all the wonderful destinations in this diverse city. From downtown urban city images and across the city from Waiheke Island to the West Coast beaches, this book features all the placed loved by visitors and locals alike.

Postcards from Auckland is a quality hardback book, but in a smaller size, so easy to post or throw into your suitcase. Click here: Postcards from Auckland for more details.

Corporate customers should contact us to discuss quantity discounts and optional branding.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Business gifts for China

Trading with China and Chinese companies is increasingly a goal for many businesses, looking to capitalise on either the massive market opportunities or the low production costs on offer. New Zealanders relatively relaxed approach to business can lead us to vastly underestimate the cultural gulf which must be bridged in order to achieve success.

While all aspects of the cultural differences should be carefully researched by anyone wishing to trade succssfully with the Chinese, our focus is on Chinese business gifts.

The NZTE site offers a wealth of information, and we feel Michael Stedman of NHNZ  (the biggest foreign producer of documentaries in China) explains it well, saying  gift giving in China is one of his biggest headaches.

                “Gift giving is a social obligation but is governed by a lot of unwritten rules. I have been embarrassed by gifts I’ve seen some New Zealand companies give – things that are tatty and unwrapped.”

Among the gifts he takes are honey, Paua, and books, often including his branding on the wrapping. 
Mini Honey Gift Sets

Polished & Boxed Paua shell
Pocket size hardback books with your logo
You will find many more tips on our web-site, but some of our key tips include:
  • Research your planned gifts (to ensure they are not "unlucky" or accidentally cause offence, which is easy to do)
  • Ensure you have gifts for everyone, taking care to ensure your gifts reflect their rank in heirarchy
  • Branding with your logo increases the 'mana' of your gifts (we can offer branding on books or gifts for very little extra).
  • Ensure your gifts are beautifully wrapped in appropriate colours (we can help with this)
    Sample wrapping of gifts for Chinese recipients
Let us know if you need gifts for Chinese recipients, and we can help you bridge this part of the cultural gulf.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Little cheap Conference Gifts

Pair of Rimu Coasters
Little  cheap conference gifts....we supply a lot of gifts for conference delegates and speakers. By the time the budget has been blown on accomodation, travel, dining out, entertainment and more,  there is often not much left in the kitty for the delegate's gifts or even the speaker's gifts.
Wooden Bookmarks with Paua

Finding something, smallish, universally popular, tasteful and unique on a shoestring, that doesn't scream 'cheap' is a bit of a tricky ask, but there is always a solution.

Here's a few of the less expensive gifts we have on offer. You won't find many of them on our website, so give us a call or send through an email to discuss your requirements.
Magnetic Puzzles

Glass Platters and Coasters
Business Card Holder 
Tea light candles in a lovely little glass holders
Petite jars of NZ Honey

Monday, February 4, 2013

Why your NZ business should care about Chinese New Year

Depending on where in New Zealand you live, you should be on the look-out for low flying dragons from late January onwards. Loud, and colourful, they are hard to miss, and one of the key features in celebrations of Chinese New Year.
Dragon Dance outside ASB Showgrounds, Auckland

 So why should your business in New Zealand care about Chinese New Year?

Chinese New Year is the biggest festival in the Chinese calendar, and has been celebrated for centuries. Chinese New Year kicks off in late January or early February (varying according to the Lunar New Year), with celebrations continuing for two weeks. It is celebrated with gusto, including the loud and colourful dragon dances.

In Chinese legend, Buddha invited animals to a New Year's Celebration, and only 12 showed up. Now each year is named after one of these animals (e.g. Dragon, Snake, Horse, Pig, etc.)

It is a time for cleansing out the old,  for renewing and refreshing, taking holidays and spending time in celebration with friends and family.

Just as the tills ring in the western world as Christmas approaches, the approach of Chinese New Year is also very good for many businesses.

It is traditional to have a new outfit to see in the New Year,  meaning  purchasing not only new shoes and clothes for the whole family, but new hair cuts, and often other accessories like cosmetics as part of a mini-makover.

As families and friends gather for meals,  spend on groceries increases, and restaurants are busy. Food gifts like confectionary and fruits are given, and florists will benefit from an increase in floral displays.

Tradionally it is a holiday time, when people travel back to their home villages or to spend time with family. The travel industry can look to benefit from this increased activity too.

With Statistics New Zealand predicting the Asian population in NZ to increase from 400, 000 in 2006 to 790,000 in 2026 this traditional Chinese festival will impact upon many businesses. It is time to consider the potential this festival could present to your business, especially if you are in Auckland where the largest Asian population resides.

Those travelling to Asian countries on business will want to ensure they pack a few extra gifts into their bags. (We suggest food gifts, wrapped in 'lucky' colours of gold or red, like this gorgeous Chocolate selection) .
NZ Business Gifts for China

So take a new look at Chinese New Year, and look out for low flying noisy dragons.