Hamper (noun): a basket used to deliver an exciting array of things

Blog posts retail
Hamper Joy: gifts like this inspire strong feelings of expectation

There are not many expressions that instantly conjure up such strong feelings of expectation, interest and excitement as does the word “hamper”.

If you believe you are about the receive a hamper from a friend, member of the family or colleague what comes to mind? Gifts, food, special things, enjoyment, pleasure. What is the common denominator? None of them is negative: They are all positives!

It is a truly enervating experience to have a mystery basket arrive on your doorstep. Anybody who doesn’t get excited about discovering what layer upon layer of a hamper reveals must be suffering badly.

  • The hamper may be full of delicious food and drink.
  • It may be stuffed with fascinating trinkets.
  • It may be an arrangement of flowers thoughtfully assembled in a unique display.
  • The basket may be packed with succulent fruits of every description.

There are few things that cannot be delivered in a spectacular way in a hamper, whether here in Singapore or anywhere else around the world.

Hampers first really became popular in Victorian England and have been standing the test of time ever since. Today they are a glorious gift solution for any celebratory event throughout the year and can contain just about anything. You choose.

The concept of the hamper originated in France in around the 11th century. The term ‘hamper‘ comes from the French word ‘hanapier’, which describes a case for goblets. Woven baskets were always traditionally been constructed with willow and were originally employed to transport food and drink on long journeys, hunting expeditions or other expeditions.

It was in the 19th century, as a result of the UK’s industrial revolution, and the improved transport links that came about as a result, that inspired the Victorians to literally grasp the handle of the hamper idea and send items of fresh food throughout the country and Empire.

Luxury food hampers quickly became a popular tradition, particularly at Christmas, when families would send hampers to each other as impressive gifts.

Around this time it also became common for employers to present hampers to their servants and other staff. These traditional baskets, made of wicker, might have been packed with food and clothes. The convention was for these hampers to be filled with seasonal produce, including meat and preserved fruits and given on Boxing Day.

Hamper delivery was a way of saying thank you and making sure everyone had plenty to enjoy over the festive season.

Since the mid 19th Century the use of hampers to spread joy and goodwill has continuously evolved and grown throughout the world. The evolution of the hamper has followed in the footsteps of a variety of food trends and every change in fashion.

The exciting development of hampers and their uses continues today. Indeed, even hamper weaving methods and the baskets produced as a result are changing too.

Nowadays a wide variety of natural weaving materials is used in addition to willow. Other materials can include:

  • rattan
  • seagrass

Expert weavers are able to create hamper baskets in a whole array of sizes and shapes. Wooden and other boxes and gift bags are also used for hamper delivery

Hampers are perfect for this part of the world because giving gifts is part of the culture of Singapore. Recent surveys have indicated that more than 44 percent of people say they are willing to spend over  S$200 on a single gift and more than 24 percent are likely to spend between S$100 and S$200.

The surveys also show that gifts are given all year round, not just during the Great Singapore Sale and the festive seasons.

The opportunities for hamper delivery are almost infinite. It is not just for the traditional seasonal occasions, like Christmas, New Year, Easter, Chinese New Year, hampers can also be created, put together and delivered for:

  • Mummies to give to their babies and vice versa
  • Parents to give their babies for a Full Moon party
  • Couples to give each other for Valentine’s Day

Hampers are such a perfect solution for busy Singaporeans keen to satisfy their friends, family and colleagues, whatever their budget.

Whether it is fresh fruit, the best wines, or healthy biscuits and award-winning baby products, all of these items can be incorporated thoughtfully into an exciting basket of goods that can be put together for hamper delivery.

Today the hamper is more popular than it has ever been. They are a chance for people to be given and to experience and taste products they may never have thought of buying themselves.

What is more, it is now possible to put hampers together to suit very specific dietary needs and other requirements. This means that nobody needs to miss out on the joy and excitement of receiving such a fantastic and innovative present. It’s even possible to create Gluten-Free and Diabetic hampers if they are required.

The perfect food hamper needs to be a delicious mixture of savoury and sweet. Everybody loves one, whether it is receiving it, or the interest of putting one together with care and attention,  picking out those things that your friends, family or colleagues are going to love. It makes the hamper as a present that little bit more special.

It is best if the sweet items are individual and bespoke. Local products are invariably winners. Temptations like butter shortbread or chocolate wafers are never rebuffed. The savoury items could always be something homemade, like a pressed tongue or a cured ham.

The best hampers are definitely those that are personalised to suit the people to whom they are being given. Today the items in a particular hamper can not only be swathed in bespoke gift wrap but the accompanying card can be specifically tailored for a specific person, occasion or purpose, or all three.

Baskets, ribbons, greeting cards, and other decorations all add elegance to a hamper.  But when it comes to giving a gift and hamper delivery one thing that most definitely cannot be overlooked is convenience.

Hamper delivery must be efficient, precise, friendly, and punctual or the whole purpose can be easily marred.

Singaporeans like to give and receive gifts but they not only expect the best products to be chosen for their hampers. They also require practical convenience for their hamper delivery.

What is the enduring appeal of hampers? They suit just about any occasion and most certainly every person who receives one. Whether it’s for family, friends, customers or staff, hampers provide a perfect gift.

Crochet A Bag Holder With Your Old Bags

Blog posts crafts
Unsightly but useful: Baled plastic bags for recycling

Do you have a habit of throwing your old plastic bags in a ball when you’ve used them to bring the shopping back home?

Some people who are keen on handicrafts create a crocheted bag to store their old bags in and keep them neat and tidy and out of the way.

But why not go a step further and create an even cleverer and more environmentally friendly solution by crocheting a bag holder with yarn that you have created yourself out of recycling your own leftover plastic shopping and grocery bags.

You can make a very pretty and extremely environmentally benign bag holder simply by following these instructions. And an additional bonus is it will cost absolutely nothing – just your own time and effort.

Choose one of the many striking designs for crochet patterns that are available for making a bag holder.

There’s nothing new about the idea of recycling old used plastic bags but think about it: if you take the bags back to the shop for them to recycle, they will simply melt them down and make new bags. This will have the harmful effect of emitting, even more, pollution into the air.

Fusing and joining plastic bags together with an iron can release some very noxious fumes into the atmosphere, stinking out your home.

Get your scissors

So, why not get out a pair of the scissors you already use for handicrafts and set about recycling any old plastic shopping and grocery bags into useful ‘yarn’ with which to make an attractive bag to store your future collection of plastic shopping bags.

Start by first laying out a single plastic bag. The bags most suitable for this are those thin ones that you find in chain grocers like Walmart. Take the bag’s seams and tuck them in at the side and then smooth out your bag so that it’s flat. This doesn’t have to be done so there are no creases and the bag is perfect. It will all look fine in the end.

Now you are ready to cut off the bottom edge of the bag with your scissors. For this, you will need to ensure your scissors are good and sharp because you will find that even slightly blunt scissors are not able to cut plastic bags well.

Once you have cut the edges you need to fold the bag lengthways and cut the folded bag into strips of about one and a half inches wide. Again this does not need to be perfect. As it’s just a guideline you don’t need to hunt for a ruler.

Every aspect of this task needs to be kept as simple as possible. Now unfold one of the cut strips and begin the process of joining. Be careful so the strip doesn’t tear on any fused seam.

Loop the loops

Get hold of another cut strip and unfold this too. Loop the strip around a thumb and index finger while holding the rest in your fist.

Then continue this process of bag joining by bringing the loop that is on your right hand over the strip that is looped in your left hand.

Maintain the loop that is in your right hand, and grasp the strip from your left hand, pulling it a little of the way through the loop that is in your right hand.

Carry on until you can complete the bag joining and tie the knot. For this, you need to place your left hand through the most left part of that strip that you most recently passed through the loop that was in your right hand and let it settle on your left wrist.

Now grasp the other end of the strip that you passed through the loop in your right hand with your left index finger and thumb.

Draw the part that you’ve already pinched in your left hand through the loop that you have on your left wrist and continue to pull the knot until it is tight.

Finally, you are ready to finish joining the bag loops and begin crocheting. It’s very important that use up all of your shopping and grocery bags.

The yarn that you have created out of all your bags is best crocheted using a size K or larger crochet hook.

In the end, you will have a perfectly crocheted bag in which you can store any shopping bags that you collect in future.