Thursday, 16 November 2017

Five Fun Champagne Cocktails

Christmas is a fun time when you can pull out all the stops when it comes to food and drink. Instead of drinking champagne neat, why not consider some of these luxurious cocktails. Won’t your guests be surprised?


One of the most popular champagne cocktails is simply to add orange juice and a dash of triple sec or Grand Marnier. Perfect for breakfast or brunch on Christmas morning or any lazy Sunday morning for that matter.


Fans of Ab Fab will know the Stoli-Bolli well, which is basically vodka added to champagne to give it that extra punch. One ounce of vodka is all you need and it looks absolutely fabulous garnished with a strawberry.


This one is ideal for Christmas due to the festive colour from the cranberry juice. Mix the juice with Cointreau and champagne for that special Christmas cocktail. You can make this to preference but generally aim for equal parts champagne and cranberry juice (3 ounces) with ½ ounce of Cointreau.

Classic Cocktail

Soak a sugar cube in angostura bitters. Fill a glass with champagne and add the sugar cube. An oldie but still definitely a goodie. This recipe has been around since the 1800s.

Lavender Champagne

The great thing about this recipe is that the sugar water keeps for about one month. Dissolve ½ cup sugar in an equal amount of boiling water. Add a teaspoon dried lavender, stir, then let cool. Strain the lavender and then keep in fridge. When ready to serve, add 1½ teaspoons syrup to about 6 ounces of champagne.

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

All I Want For Christmas...

The Christmas orders have started to come in – both the corporate and the regular gift orders and it is such a fun time for us. And busy – did we mention busy. Here are some other meanings that we connect with this colourful time of year.

C is for Chocolate

And we have lots of it. From hot chocolate hampers to delicious hampers filled with just chocolate, you can definitely cater for all those sweet tooths in your life with our extensive array of chocolate gifts. One of the best things is that we also offer lots of new products around Christmas time to add some variety to your gift giving. So, keep checking back regularly for more ideas.

H is for Hampers

But we don’t just have chocolate hampers. We have wine hampers, cooking hampers, lolly hampers, coffee hampers and more. The variety of our gifts is what makes browsing our gifts so fun. Beer hampers, scotch hampers, port hampers, non-alcoholic hampers – the most challenging thing is deciding on which hamper to buy.

R is for Rosé

Such a lovely drop to consume before and after Christmas. It’s not white, and it’s not red! Rosé is pink in tone, and is great for barbecues and get-togethers. Many of our gift hampers such as our Gourmet Picnic Hamper features a bottle of Rosé and it is ideal for a summertime drop. Especially when it arrives with so many other goodies as well!

I is for Italian food

I love Australia’s multiculturism and the fact that we can enjoy such a variety of food wherever we go. I personally love Italian food and am so glad we have such beautiful gifts in store to represent its culinary influences on our great country. Check out our Italian Homemade Pasta Hamper, Pizza Perfection Hamper and Homemade Pizza Gift Hamper.

S is for Special

This is how our gifts make people feel when they arrive. All of our hampers feature so many wonderful treats that it is hard to contain the glee when they are opened. This is our favourite part of the job – seeing and hearing the reactions when our hampers grace the doorsteps of those all over Australia. We can’t help but feel a bit like the jolly old man himself.

T is for Tea

Christmas is a time for a meetups and what better way to spend it than over a cup of tea. We even have an Afternoon Tea Hamper to honour the early British traditions of afternoon and morning tea. Whether you want to chat with friends and family, there is no better time of year to catch up with those near and dear.

M is for Merry

A merry holiday is guaranteed with many of our champagne, wine and beer hampers. It doesn’t matter whether you are into international beers or cider, or a bottle of red wine or white wine, the choice is yours. Many of our beer and wine gifts also come with a selection of delicious snacks and treat which will ensure they are a guaranteed winner.

A is for Any Time

Online shopping means you can shop any time of the day or night. You can order your Christmas gifts at your convenience, and they can be delivered as close to the 25th December as possible to ensure they arrive on time. There are no last-minute shopping sprees – you can be as organised as you need to be and find time to relax and hang out with your loved ones.

S is for Sweet

While we do have many savoury gifts, the popular ones tend to be our sweeter gifts. The lolly and chocolate boxes have been shopper favourites ever since we opened our doors all those years ago. Our gifts are still the quirky alternative to flowers, which makes our shoppers come back time and time again. For that, we are incredibly grateful.

Monday, 6 November 2017

What's New On Our Shelves at Rainbow Designs

It's an exciting time of year - the stores are getting busier, summer is almost here and we get new gifts on our shelves to please the Christmas shoppers. So what's new? Are you ready to be wowed!

For starters we have the Festive Treats Gift Hamper. For $90 including postage, your recipient of choice will get brandy glaze, rosemary lavash, plum pudding, chocolate covered macadamia, three berry jam and handmade cookies. This is one of my favourite gifts, particularly the white choc chip macadamia handmade cookies. Delicious!

Next is the Christmas Cheer Gift Hamper which is indeed full of the Christmas spirit. For $190, including postage you get a bottle of Brut, olive and herb antipasto, berry jam, brandy sauce, cookies, apricots in mango liqueur, panaforte, plum pudding, shortbread, lemon butter and more. Imagine their surprise when they open this delightful gift on Christmas morning.

It's definitely not Christmas without the bubbles. The Christmas Bubbles Gift Hamper costs only $50 including postage and features a bottle of Brut, some chocolates and a plum pudding. For those spending Christmas alone or need some cheering up, this gift will do it. Show them you care with this gift hamper wherever in Australia they may be.

For those looking for some wine and treats, this is it! For $125 including postage your loved ones will receive a bottle of red and a bottle of white, lavash, beetroot relish, chocolates, rum balls, quince paste and plums in port. A stylish and deserving gift if ever there was one!

Which one do you like the most?

Friday, 27 October 2017

I Don't Want To Panic You, But...

...Did you know that Christmas is just 9 Mondays away. That literally gives you 8 weeks between now and then to do your Christmas shopping.

Shh, don't tell anyway but I haven't started either.

If it is your intention to order from Rainbow Gifts (first, let me say what wonderful taste you have), you can order at any time to help with budgeting. We will just make a note of your order and send it out closer to the date.

So you might want to start browsing our range of delicious and delectable gifts and choose the ones you think your uncle, brother, sister and mother may like. And don't forget to order a special little gift for yourself to pop under the tree!

Here are some of our recommendations:

When you cannot decide between chocolate and lollies, the Big Sweet Tooth Gift wins every time. There is no choice. Just a delicious mix of candy to suit all tastes - one whole kilo's worth in fact.

Well, it is summer after all and who doesn't love the taste of ice-cream on a hot day. Learn how to make professional quality ice-cream from the comfort of your own home.

Crystal glasses, bottle of Brut, chocolate - doesn't this gift just scream Christmas. It all comes nicely presented in this gorgeous gift box - perfect for gift giving!

Popcorn Hamper

Set up the popcorn maker just in time for those outdoor movie sessions. With delicious popcorn recipes and an array of flavourings and toppings, this gift is one that everyone will love.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

A Condensed History of Chocolate

It is no wonder that the Aztecs believed that the cacao beans were a gift from their God of Wisdom. Can you imagine being among the first to discover that the cacao bean could produce a cup of chocolaty goodness? Of course, the Aztecs’ preference was for the unsweetened variety – they initially drank their brew quite bitter, mixed with spices and corn puree of all things. Despite their bitter preference for the tasty chocolate-producing bean, the Aztecs, Incas, Mayans and Olmecs all agreed that it was a crop worth growing and harvesting.

The cacao beans became so sought after in the 1500s that they started being used as currency. This is what you could purchase back in the good ol’ days.
  • 1 cacao bean – 1 avocado/1 tomato/1 tamale
  • 3 cacao beans – 1 turkey egg
  • 30 cacao beans – 1 small rabbit
  • 100 beans - 1 turkey hen/1 hare or forest rabbit
They also considered their chocolate beverages to be quite the aphrodisiac, apparently. It is said that the 16th-century Aztec emperor Montezuma drank three gallons of chocolate a day to increase his libido.

It wasn’t until the cacao beans arrived in Europe when the sweetened version of hot chocolate became all the rage. The Spanish added cane sugar and cinnamon although it was mainly consumed by the nobility at the time maintaining a high price tag. Cacao bean meets sugar is a match made in heaven in my humble opinion.

However, when Maria Theresa of Spain wed the French King Louis XVII in 1615 she brought her love of chocolate over to France, and it spread from there. Chocolate became more affordable and everyone could enjoy it.

In 1828, a Dutch chemist by the name of Coenraad Johannes van Houten invented the cocoa press which could squeeze out the fatty cocoa butter. His invention left behind a dry paste which could then be used in liquids and other foods.

I guess it was only a matter of time before the chocolate drink became a chocolate bar. It was in 1847 when Joseph Fry made his first chocolate bar. Two years later John Cadbury got into the act. The two men eventually joined forces. The first chocolate bars were still not as sweet as we like them today. When Henry Nestle came on the chocolate scene, he began adding milk to his chocolate concoctions and so many more followed his lead. And, I guess the rest, as they say, is history.

What is your favourite chocolate bar?

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Halloween Is In The Air

Halloween is fast gaining popularity in Australia, and each year we see more and more Halloween decorations and costumes creep into the stores and on the shelves. Admittedly I love to look at the houses decorated in their spooky themes, tombstones, witches and all.

Trick-or-treating is become quite the norm in many Australian suburbs and streets, and watching horror movies and bobbing for apples (also called dunking) are fast becoming a holiday tradition. While Halloween has its firm fixtures in Christianity and mythology, trick-or-treating never really took root until the 1930s in the USA. And it took many more years for it to become popular over here. We are familiar with the event due to the American television programs and movies which aired on our little and big screens but up until recently it was always something which we acknowledged was done "over there". But now times they are a-changin'!

If you plan to get into the spirit of the holiday, how do you know which houses to knock on? It is best, of course, to stick to houses which look like they are decorated in celebration of the holiday, have a bowl of lollies left out for you to sample, or at the very least, have an orange (or other coloured) balloon out the front. Sticking to people you know is also a common tactic as Australians, as a rule, still frown on the idea of knocking on stranger's doors to ask for lollies (and quite rightly so!) As it is still quite new in this part of the world, not everyone appreciates getting disturbed in the middle of their favourite tv program either if they aren't expecting it.

Do you think Australians should be celebrating Halloween?

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Slow Sales Before The Christmas Rush

Traditionally, October is a quiet month for Rainbow Designs. There is always a lull in the gift buying department after Father's Day, like everyone is saving their energy for the big Christmas rush. I guess it gives me time to mentally prepare for the seasonal onset of gift buying.

I do love Christmas and the sights and the sounds it brings, but I enjoy owning a gift store even more. Rainbow Designs has been in operation since 2004 - that means that this will be my 14th year selling and sending out gifts of deliciousness all over the country.

I am very grateful for everyone who has placed an order on my little website and for those who have placed orders many times over the years. Even the smallest of comments and likes on the Rainbow Designs' Facebook page always puts a smile on my face.

It is hard to imagine a Christmas without the need to send out lollies and chocolates, but I guess the time will come one day in the future. Perhaps, sooner rather than later! After all, you never know what exciting things lie ahead in the future. :)

I know I have been very fortunate in being able to set up and run a successful business for so long. I have lost count of the number of small businesses I have seen open and close during that time; and these thoughts bring mixed feelings - both happiness and sadness at once. Owning a small business in Australia can be tough, but thankfully I have had the support of my friends and family despite the ups and downs that being a lolly store gift owner brings.

Anyway, enough of that! Let's raise a glass to a wonderful 2017 holiday season and the orders to come. Let's make it a great one!

Friday, 29 September 2017

Sorry I Forgot Your Birthday

You are busy. Life is busy. And sometimes special events, anniversaries, and birthdays get forgotten. It’s a fact of life.

Browsing the internet I thought I would see what funny excuses there were for forgetting a birthday or sending a belated gift. These are some of the ones I stumbled upon.

(Note to readers: Please do not use these excuses unless you wish to be in the doghouse for quite a while.)
  •          I sent your gift late to increase the suspense factor.
  •          I am saving up for your {pick one: Christmas/birthday/anniversary} present.
  •          The rabid squirrels mugged me and stole it.
  •          The alien probe wiped out portions of my memory.
  •          I would have remembered if I didn’t have diarrhea.
  •          I thought I was doing you a favour by forgetting.
  •          I was busy documenting a Big Foot sighting.

And of course, there is always the ever-classic excuse, the dog ate it!

We would love to hear some of your own funny excuses!

In all seriousness, if you do happen to forget your beloved’s birthday, remember that Rainbow Designs has your back. We can quickly send your gift hamper by Express Post if necessary. Just add it to your shopping cart before checkout. Remember that our chocolate and lolly gifts will go a long way in gaining their forgiveness for forgetting in the first place.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

It's Always Christmas At Rainbow Designs

It may sound odd but it's true. We are always sending out wonderful hampers and delicious gifts, that every day feels like Christmas. We can definitely relate to the joy that St Nick brings to kids all across the world as we too, through our gifts, are putting smiles on many faces.

I mean who wouldn't want to receive a Cream Liqueur and Chocolate Hamper or a Big Chocolate Box delivered to their doorstep? We always have been the quirky alternative to flowers - and are proud of that fact!

And while I don't proclaim to know everything about business and get things wrong along the way, I do love making people happy. That's got to count for a lot, right?

So while it may not be Christmas yet, it isn't that far away - only 95 days in fact. We always keep a few Christmas gifts on our site for those who do like to order early, but will undoubtedly have a few more special gifts to add closer to the date for those last minute shoppers as well.

But between now and then, we appreciate you guys keeping us busy with all your orders and may those special times be celebrated today, tomorrow and in the future.

And as always, I eagerly await to receive that first Christmas order - it is a super exciting time for an online retailer like myself!! I just might have to don that red suit and white beard in honour of the festivities!


Friday, 15 September 2017

Bring On The Wine

If you are looking for a gift for that special someone, you might want to consider a hamper with wine. Wine is great as a thank you gift, a get well gift, a housewarming gift, a congratulatory gift or a corporate gift. It can be given on birthdays, anniversaries, or even just because you feel like it. And when wine is paired with a delicious array of goodies such as soldier cake, pretzels or popcorn, then even better.

On days like today, (it is Friday after all!) wine is even more welcome to help you transition from weekday to weekend. Whether you are partial to a drop of white or red, wine can put a smile on someone’s face and show them how much you care.

Let’s breakdown some of the wines we offer in our gift hampers.

Rothbury Estate Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot: A full bodied palate of chocolate, black cherry and mulberry.

Rothbury Estate Sauvignon Blanc: A tinge of citrus, this wine has a fragrant nose of snow peas, guava and passionfruit.

Baileys of Glenrowan Shiraz: Complex aromas of blackberry, blood plum and rose petals with hints of liquorice & spice.

La Tours Travers Bordeaux Rouge: Fresh leafy, herbal and cigar-like aromas with a hint of stewed plums and red fruits.

La Tours Travers Bordeaux Blanc: An aromatic nose from citrus to white flowers with a fresh, lively and well-balanced palate.

Have a browse of our wine and champagne hampers; you just might discover your new favourite bottle.

Friday, 8 September 2017

Fun Gifts For Kids (Of All Ages)

Admittedly many of our gifts are for adults. We have an interesting range of kitchen hampers and a few gift hampers which contain wine, beer and cider. But let's not forget the kids.

We also have a fun range of gifts which are suitable for kids - and the best bit, you get to share in their enjoyment of the gift. After all, you don't want them to consume too much sugar, and that is where the help of mum and dad come in, right?

While you may not be keen to give them a whopping 1 kg box of chocolate or lollies, unless you intend to snack while they are sleeping, we have some smaller gifts which are just as wonderful.

Just Chocolates

500 grams of chocolates is enough to win anyone's heart. This half kilo box of chocolate is jam packed with jaffas, chocolate bullets, turkish delight, smarties, m&ms and more...

Just Lollies

For those who prefer lollies over chocolate, this half kilo box is divine. It features jelly babies, snakes, strawberries and creams, gummi bears, jelly beans, frogs and more...

Medium Sweet Tooth Gift Box

The Medium Sweet Tooth Gift Box offers the best of both worlds - a selection of lollies and chocolates. You get a delightful half kilo of fantales, snakes, smarties, turkish delight, chicos, peanut clusters and more...

Just To Say - Bulk Orders

If you are planning an event or gathering with lots of kids, then our Just To Say gift pack is ideal. You need a minimum of twenty 500 gram grab boxes which will be filled with a high-quality selection of lollies, chocolates or a combination of the two. Just select your option when you are ordering.

Friday, 1 September 2017

Delicious Gifts For $50 and Under

Ordering gifts online does not have to be expensive. We have some lovely and very delicious gifts for $50 and under, including postage and handling.

For $48 (including shipping) you can order a Big Chocolate Box, a Big Lolly Box or a Big Sweet Tooth Gift.

For exactly $50 (including shipping) we have the Little Sweetie Gift Hamper and Nibbles For Everyone.

If your budget is a little more fluid and you wanted to spend a bit more - say in the $60 range - then consider the Chocolot Gift Hamper, the Congratulations Cake & Bubbly Gift, the Nuts About Sweets Gift Hamper or the Ultimate Cider Gift Box.

All of our gifts will be expertly packed and shipped to your door or your friend's door in no time at all. Don't forget that you also have the option of upgrading to Express Post which is wonderful for those who have left it to the last minute to order something special for their friends or family. Even if you do order your gift a day or two late, your recipients will forget that fact as soon as they open your gift.

As the saying goes, "better late than never" right?

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Father's Day Gift Hampers From Rainbow Designs

Let's face it, dear ol' dad can get a bit sick of packs of socks and jocks, no matter how much he needs them. However, a gift hamper from Rainbow Designs is another thing altogether. You can never tire from one our gifts, especially with the variety that we offer. And of course, you can't go past the fact that our hampers are stunning to look at and even more delicious to eat (or drink!)

With Father's Day creeping up very quickly, it is time you placed your order. This year Father's Day falls on 3 September - just 11 sleeps away. And if you want your gift to arrive on time, then you had best get your order in fast.

While it is nice to take dad out for a nice meal or for a beer down at his favorite local, a gift will commemorate the occasion and celebrate the dad you know and love.

Here are some of our great gifts on offer.

Big Lolly Box: A yummy 1 kg box of lollies.

Boutique Beer and Savoury Snacks Gift:  Twelve craft beers, corn chips, olives, peanuts, pretzels, a beer glass and coasters.

Homemade Pizza Gift Hamper: Pizza stone with rack, pizza cutter, 1 kg of flour, a jar of tomato paste, one box of instant yeast, and a bottle of wine.

Red Wine Delight: Wooden wine box, bar set and one bottle of Baileys of Glenrowan Shiraz.

Sweet Selection Hamper: Just shy of 2 kg of lollies in an assortment of groovy containers.

Vivani Chocolate: 6 blocks of Vivani Chocolate including dark chocolate, dark chocolate with chilli, chocolate orange, chocolate peppermint, chocolate praline and almond chocolate.

Happy Father's Day to all the awesome dads out there - may you get your Father's Day wish and a Father's Day gift.

Friday, 18 August 2017

Memories Of Those Near and Dear

Do you have a favourite memory of you and your dad? With Father's Day just around the corner, it is nice to reminisce about the good 'ol days.

Michelle Tupy, a writer and dear friend of mine, wrote this about her dad many years ago. It resonated with me then, as it still does now.

"As a young girl, I remember the excitement felt whenever I had the chance to spend time with my father on the farm. Whilst he was probably not doing anything more than just going about his regular duties, being with him was what mattered most to me. I can remember my father whistling commands to the dogs as they corralled the sheep into the pens. I held tightly onto his rough and calloused hands as we crossed the paddock to close the gate behind the last of the sheep.

I watched with wide-eyed fascination as my dad wrestled sheep after sheep to get them into just the right position for shearing. I remember the sweat pouring down his forehead as he worked tirelessly shearing one sheep after another pausing occasionally to have a drink of water and give me a smile.

Later we would go back to the house in our old battered ute. I rode in the front, feeling like a princess, with my dad next to me and the dogs barking in the back."

It wasn't a particularly special moment. As a country girl growing up in New South Wales back in the late 70s and 80s, riding around in the ute was probably a daily, if not a weekly, occurrence. But the thing that struck me the most was the fact that such a simple moment could be captured and frozen in time.

We all have those special moments - with our dads, our mums, our siblings, or our friends, and we hold onto them for as long as we can. It is those moments that get us through the tough times. It is those moments that we hold close to our chests as we lie in our beds willing sleep to come. It is those moments we escape to when we are tired, stressed or angry. 

They are the moments that we live for; they are the moments that make life worth living. 

Do you have a special memory that makes your heart sing?

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Popular Australian Lollies

Australians love their lollies!

We recently did a mini-survey on our Rainbow Designs Facebook page asking people to list their favourite lollies, and we weren't too surprised by what we saw.

Chocolate Aniseed Rings, Chicos, Snakes, Green Frogs, Raspberries, Cobbers, Minties and Freckles were listed as some of our fan's favourites. We agree wholeheartedly - they all sound pretty yummy to us!

Australians have always had their favourites - Fantales, Jaffas, Redskins, Freddo Frogs, Caramello Koalas - and there is always a loud uproar when our favourites are taken off the shelves. Remember when Nestle discontinued the Spearmint Leaves and Green Frogs from our shelves. Aussies were not happy. While they did bring them back for a limited edition in late November to Christmas Eve in 2016, Nestle said that their customers will have to 'watch this space' to see if they will ever return. We personally are still in mourning over the disappearance of our beloved green frogs, a firm favourite on the Rainbow Designs' shelves.

And then there are our beloved chocolate bars. Foreigners may not understand our love for the Pollywaffle, Mint Patties or the Cherry Ripe - but we cannot get enough! Images of musk sticks, jersey caramels and chocolate bullets inhabit our childhood dreams. And no weekend was complete without a trip to the milk bar to sample the Milko Chews and Sherbies.

Aah the memories. What was your favourite?

Friday, 4 August 2017

Did Someone Say Coffee?

Coffee hampers and gifts are well received for any occasion. They work perfectly for those over the coffee drinking age, are great for either men or women and are suitable as Christmas gifts, Australia Day gifts, Father's Day presents, birthday presents or thank you gifts. They are decadent, yet practical; classic, but trendy! All in all, they are a win-win - well, unless your recipient likes to drink tea.

Coffee has been around since it was accidentally discovered in Ethiopia. Most of the world's coffee currently comes from Brazil, followed by Colombia and Vietnam. While it has been banned and lauded many times over, there is no denying its popularity.

While Australians go through their fair share of coffee every year, they are actually ranked number 42 on the coffee consumption list at 3kg per capita. The top ten countries for consumption of coffee are:

1. Finland: 9.6 kg per capita (consumption of 2.64 cups/day)
2. Norway: 7.2 kg (1.98 cups/day)
3. Netherlands: 6.7 kg (1.84 cups/day)
4. Slovenia: 6.1 kg (1.68 cups/day)
5. Austria: 5.5 kg (1.51 cups/day)
6. Serbia: 5.4 kg (1.49 cups/day)
7. Denmark: 5.3 kg (1.46 cups/day)
8. Germany: 5.2 kg (1.43 cups/day)
9. Belgium: 4.9 kg (1.35 cups/day)
10. Brazil: 4.8kg (1.32 cups/day)

Now, that's a lot of coffee!

Let's run through the coffee gifts we currently have on the Rainbow Designs' shelves.

This impressive coffee hamper features a Bodum French-press 'Brazil' three cup coffee maker for true taste extraction. It also comes with three packs of quality Arabica ground coffee, packed and sealed in vacuum bags for freshness. Pair with two Bodum double walled coffee mugs and a box of HK Anderson Honey Wheat Braids and you have a gift that all coffee lovers would love to receive.

The delightful Coffee and Cookies Hampers includes a classic French press coffee plunger, one bag of Gourmet Explorer Coffee and two glass walled coffee mugs. And, of course, let's not the forget a decadent pack of cookies. Delicious!

Monday, 29 May 2017

Gifts for Coffee Lovers and Hot Chocolate Drinkers

Now that it is coming into the cooler weather our hot drinks hampers are starting to pick up the pace. They've generally been pretty popular but when winter hits they become rock stars and everyone wants a piece of them! We love it and we can definitely understand why they're so loved.

Most of us need a coffee first thing in the morning before we can properly start our day and then a lovely, rich chocolatey hot chocolate at midday really hits the spot. These three hampers were designed by coffee lovers and hot chocolate connoisseurs for coffee lovers and hot chocolate connoisseurs!

For the Hot Chocolate fiends we have:

Gourmet Hot Chocolate Hamper - $90 (although it's currently on special for just $80). There's milk chocolate, white chocolate and dark chocolate mixes plus marshmallows (seriously what's a hot chocolate without marshmallows??) and a fabulous hand crafted hot chocolate mug.

Gourmet Hot Chocolate Hamper
Now for the coffee lovers we have two fabulous hampers:

Barista Coffee Hamper - $130. It comes with everything you need to make the perfect coffee. Coffee, obviously, a three cup coffee maker and two double walled coffee mugs also a box of honey wheat braids to enjoy with your cuppa.

Barista Coffee Hamper
Coffee and Cookies Hamper - $85. This hamper is the perfect gift for staff, favourite customers, your best friend, it makes a wonderful gift for dad or nan (or grandpa if he's the coffee drinker of the house). There's a box of delectable Ovenly cookies to help you enjoy your coffee even more, a coffee maker and two double walled coffee mugs so you can drink your coffee in style.

Coffee and Cookies Gift Hamper
These gifts are delivered free, right across Australia and come beautifully gift packed including a gift tag with your personal message on it. Our website is so easy to use even my dad can use it (and that's saying something, sorry dad but it's true!) and we'll keep you updated on the progress of your order from start to delivery. 

Cheers to a winter filled with coffee, chocolate, marshmallows and someone else doing the washing up.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Hampers for groups and BIG events

A few years ago we were asked to provide hampers that would be suitable for a large group, where everyone could share and there would be something for everyone. Like a big party in a fabulous hamper. Instead of having individual little gifts they wanted to have one giant gift and be able to make a true celebration of it.

This is were we came up with a few of our large gift hampers - aimed at turning just another hamper into an event!

These hampers have everything! They've got the makings of a true special occasions, just add people. We've found they have been popular for businesses, a celebration for being part of a team, but also for larger family gatherings - especially family reunions and 'milestone' birthdays.

Our All You Can Eat Hamper is our grand daddy of hampers and is certainly a statement gift if ever there were one! It's $490 and suitable for 10-15 people with a truck load of gourmet sweet and savoury nibbles as well as wine, bubbly, beer and gin. It is so impressive, your staff will think you're the best boss ever!

For All To Share is another magical hamper and does exactly what the name says :-) It's $200 and suitable for a group of 5-8 people.

Four Seasons Luxury Hamper is a super impressive and extra 'fancy' hamper perfect for a very special occasion, maybe that milestone birthday or anniversary or a fabulous hens night in. It's $299 and suitable for 5-10 people.

Deluxe Boutique Beers and Snacks at $200 makes a sensational gift for the groom or new dad and helps fancy up a footy grand final like you would not believe :-)

Our Wine Appreciation Hamper has made many a Book Club get together worth reading a book for and as the night wears on who's going to remember which book it was you were meant to read anyway ;-) $170 turns your night into a monthly event or maybe a book club into a wine club as the hamper even comes with tasting sheets!

There are plenty more gift hampers to choose from that we just know your family, friends and staff will love. Whether it be a bucket load of beer or a box full of chocolates or even a picnic basket even winnie the pooh would love we just know we can help you with your BIG gifting needs :-)

Order 30 or more gifts and you'll get a 5% discount! You can order 30 of the same or 30 different gifts all going to different places or all to the same address. Gifts for groups, we've got you covered.

I better not forget our Just To Say gift - great for individual gifts for conferences, staff pressies or a family birthday party. Half kilo lolly and/or chocolate mix in a funky and fabulous gift pack - $18 each with a minimum order of just 20 includes gift tag and delivery to a single address.

When's your next BIG event?

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

(Turkish) Delight in the Positive

Focusing on the 'not happening' has been doing my head in and, to be very honest, is not productive at all. I'm turning my focus on to 'what's happening', noticing the positive and blocking out (as best I can) the not so positive.

  • people taking the time to interact on our facebook page, whether it's a like or a comment, it is so very much appreciated
  • our instagram posts that get liked even if we don't post very often
  • polite and respectful friends of the kids 
  • parents who help out no matter what
  • sister who pops in on her way to work for a cuppa
  • friends dealing with their own dramas taking the time to help others (I'm looking directly at you Michelle)
  • helpful phone service from my bank
  • books from the library, I'll never having nothing to read
  • family who check in every few weeks to catch up on gossip (or pass it on)
  • changing to a cheaper phone provider (and it was easy)
  • stocking up on tuna when the supermarket has a 'reduced for quick sale' sale
  • finding a turkish delight at the back of the crisper (where else would it be)
  • understanding suppliers who offer assistance
  • fiddling around with the website and not breaking it
  • new Doctor Who
  • enjoying my TV shows without ads thanks to my recorder
  • photo albums
  • wearing perfume even if I'm not leaving the house
  • new roofing and guttering finally being installed after coming down in the recent floods
  • my snuggly pj jumper from a couple of years back still going strong
  • my niece shouting me lunch at Betty's Burgers (the southern style chicken burger was amazing)
What's been happening in your neck of the woods that you might have missed or not thought much about but has helped you get through the week?

Who likes Doctor Who, NCIS, This Is Us and Madam Secretary? Me, me, me and me.

Monday, 15 May 2017

2003 - the year it began

2003 - planning, thinking, dreaming, working, researching

I've been working at the ATO for about 8 or 9 months now and quite enjoying it. Processing tax returns and the like isn't as boring as it sounds, well to me any way. I've always loved computer work and processing information, data entry, that sort of thing. It's nice to get myself organised at the start of the day and then head down bum up until I leave. Love being busy!

During this time I'd also been toying with the idea of starting up an online business and I was leaning towards some sort of gift business. To start I had an idea of an type of concierge style gift shop where by people would fill out an online form I had prepared on the likes and dislikes of the person they were wanting to get a gift for and then I would shop for a gift. It sounded good in theory but I just could get my head around the whole logistics of it so ended up scrapping that idea. I decided on doing a type of hamper business but trying to base it on confectionery. I had seen a gift on a website where it was just a box of lolly bananas and thought, ooh that could be something I could work with! (not that I like lolly bananas!).

I went to a Trade Fair in Sydney to see what that was all about and to try and find some suppliers. I was mainly after boxes and packaging stuff as well as possible 'add ons' to the lollies and chocolates. I had found a local confectionery wholesaler close to where I lived, handy, but being that I was still in the start up stages I didn't want to make a big investment and buy a truck load of lollies before I was semi confident I could make the business work.

After tinkering around with a website, coming up with a name*, and organising bank merchant facilities and business names, set ups etc I started listing the gifts I had come up with. This was a fairly long process, deciding on what to sell as I had written just about every type of lolly and chocolate down including biscuits and chips, anything classed as a 'treat' really. I did gradually whittle it down and decided to start with a variety of lollies and chocolates. Working out pricing was hard! I had to try and 'guesstimate' delivery costs as I wanted to have an all inclusive price, this was very much a work in progress and took my sometime to get this sorted out. I had quite a few gifts at the very beginning where I lost money as the delivery was way more than I had expected!

I was still working at the ATO while setting up my business and didn't plan on leaving until I thought my business was actually working and I could make a living from it ie it would pay my bills!


* Rainbow Designs had been registered by my sister for a business she was thinking of starting up but she changed her mind so I just took it over! At least it went with the rainbow colours of lollies. So there was no deep thinking that went into the name :-)

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Savings to be had, by you!

Over the last 24 hours or so I have gone through the website and reduced the prices of many of our fabulous hampers. Not because I think they're over priced, far from it I barely break even, but because things are oh so quiet and I'm hoping that a good old sale might fire things up again.

Not all gifts have been reduced but I may add more to the special page during the day, depending on my mood :-)

I've have always prided myself on having well priced and great value gifts so find it quite a challenge to have a 'sale' and not cost myself money. There's no point selling something for less than it actually costs to make right?? Not great business sense.

Little Sweetie Gift Hamper - $45 (normally $50)

I've marked down a lot of the most popular gifts, so these included the cheaper range, but I've also marked down some of the more expensive hampers as well as ones that aren't so popular (which I can't figure out why) in the hopes that people will notice them and think 'wow, that would be perfect for....'

If you don't need to send a gift to anyone right at this moment you are more than welcome to order now for a future event. Just make a note when you're placing your order, we would be more than happy to mark it on our diary and send when needed. Also, if you think someone you know might like one (or more) or our hampers to send to their loved ones please let them know about us, cheers!

Just Lollies - $26 (normally $29)

The lolly and chocolate boxes have always been our most popular gifts so I've even reduced them. Our $29 gifts are currently $26 and our $48 lolly and chocolate boxes are currently $43 - I might only make a few cents on them but if it means someone gets to enjoy a box of lollies who may not have, then I'm one happy lady!

Chocoholics Hamper - $65 (normally $75)
Chocoholics Hamper is currently $65 (normally $75) and the divine Vivani Hamper is only $69 (normally $80). I'm sure you know someone who would love a chocolate delivery!

These specials are set to end on Sunday, 14 May (Mother's Day) but depending on how they go and how I'm feeling and if I haven't gone broke, I may just extend the sale. Maybe......

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Robin' me

hmm, it appears some delightful person, I shall call them robin, has decided that my life is just too easy and 'blessed' at the moment and they want some if. To be precise robin has been using my credit card to have fun. What's up with that robin? I don't even use my credit card to have fun, pay bills yes but have fun, not so much.

What a complete !@#$ you are robin and while we're at it robin, I hope the tickets you bought put you directly behind a pole next to a very drunk person who throws up, all over the new clothes you've just acquired, right as the concert starts and the kid you've left at home in their new cot has a nappy explosion the likes of which have never been seen before (just as you arrive home and your baby sitter leaves!). Enjoy your ill gotten gains robin as I'm onto you and so is my bank, hell has no furry like a woman who needs to pay a bill only to find her account is empty because of some twat called robin.

Thank you to my bank who have been straight onto it, Westpac you are awesome, robin you're still a !@#$.

[note: the name I used is made up but is exactly what they have done to me, ie robbing me.]

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Books, Couscous and a pain in the Neck

A varied title if ever there were one! If you've read our Facebook page you'll have read that my neck has been giving me some grief. It started on Saturday morning and, slowly, as the day went on got more painful. I've tried deep heat (did not an iota of help), heat pack (great while it was on, except I almost burnt myself as it was HOT, but the soothing ends when the heat goes away), hot shower (no relief), pushing my fingers into the top of my spine (this does help while I'm doing that but immediately after stopping I can hardly hold my head up), trying not to move my head (not great as then when I do move my head my body is so stiff and tight that I tense up and the pain's even worse). It seems that the pain is more prominent when I move my head up and down as opposed to side to side, so I'm limiting that movement but it's not getting any better. It seems to ease off over night but as the day goes on it gets more painful. I'm hoping it will disappear soon as it's giving me a headache, like a clamp is being tightened around my head. Not fun at all. Anyway, we go on don't we. What else is there to do but get up, shut up and work these gift hampers aren't going to sell themselves (don't I know it!!)

Coffee and Cookies - $85 includes delivery and gift card

I've been to the library again, I told you life as a small business owner was exciting! I've always loved libraries, generally so peaceful and, obviously, full of books and I love books! I got 4 novels to read 3 from authors I hadn't heard of before (which, to be honest, most of the books are written by authors I haven't heard of before or if I have I've forgotten. I am terrible in remembering names of books let along who wrote them!). My plan was to just grab books that had an interesting title. I generally don't read the back as I have found that this can sometimes give away too much information and (for me) can spoil the book as I have a basic knowledge of what is going to happen. I do a skim read and that's it. Sometimes I'll select a book if there is a blurb from an author I read before (and liked) but generally it comes down to title, theme and authors I like already.

So the first book I got was 'Gypsy by Lesley Pearse' I have a few of her books at home already knew I must like her writing (not that I could tell the names of any of her books or what her style is). T

he second book is a 'dog' book 'The Dog Who Danced by Susan Wilson'. I haven't read any of her books or come across them before so didn't know what to expect. I'm a bit hesitant to read novels based on animals as quite often they can be sad (animals don't live forever you know!) but this one (I've already read it) wasn't too sad, just enough sadness I would say, it was an easy read, quite enjoyable, heartwarming (aren't all animal stories?!) and ends basically as you would imagine but still not too predictable. Lets face it, most books are predictable some more than others or more 'really, you couldn't have changed it up a bit?!'. A good book for travelling.

Next up is 'Walking on Trampolines by Frances Whiting' another new author for me and another enjoyable read plus it's set in Australia, in and around Sydney (didn't realise this when I borrowed it as I hadn't read the back). Spoiler: I cried (but I am a bit of a sook). I really enjoyed this book even though, as per usual, it was a bit predictable and a bit too easy but still a lovely read and had me wanting to know how everyone ended up.

The name and cover made me borrow it! Literary scholar I am not.
Last one is 'The Otherside of The Season by Jenn J McLeod' I'm about half way through and liking it. It's based around the Coffs Coast area which is pretty cool, I had no idea it was even an Australia book let alone set near where I live. Enjoying so far. [edited to add: finished this book and really, really loved it. Fabulous writing, loved the setting and the descriptions of the areas, even shed a tear or two, not your typical, predictable book. I'm going to see if the library has any more of McLeod's books, hope so!]

Just before I popper over to the supermarket to get a few essentials I was watching a cooking show and he whipped up some couscous to go with the fish he was cooking. So I bought some. For whatever reason I haven't ever 'cooked' couscous, no idea why when it is so easy (my kind of cooking). I had it with buttered chicken and beans, sort of a mashed potato substitute and a great alternative to rice. I eat a lot of rice. Surprisingly, to me anyway, it was easy and I managed not to stuff it up. Boil the water pour over the couscous, stir, cover the bowl, let it sit for a few minutes, fluff up with your fork and plonk onto your plate. Easy and a great accompaniment to my curry. It's cheap too, I bought the homebrand for $1 which will make at least 10 meals (possibly more) so I can add that into the mix of cheap food I eat :-)

Couscous - just add boiling water, so easy and quick!
Jacqui ~ I own a gift shop on the internet