Sunday, December 16, 2012

Getting Gift Without Burning a Hole in Your Pocket

Holiday season is here and it's time for gifting season. When you have so many people to give, it's not an easy thing to do. And your budget may burst into huge balloon too.

Here are some ideas to get your stocking stuffers without spending extra money from your pocket. You can get them all year around and keep them until you need to give someone a gift.

1. Welcome gifts, Birthday gifts
Some memberships here in Singapore offer free membership fee, welcome gifts and birthday gifts. Isn't it good? Try to explore around and see which membership is beneficial for you. You get discounts or reward points over your purchases, and free products.

2. Freebies from goodie bags
Participate in some sport events. Most of the sport events give a lot of freebies you can use for your stocking stuffer.

3. Bulk Purchase
You will definitely save a lot when you do bulk purchase. Find a product bundle with good value that you can split the goods to be given to few different people.

4. Sale
Keep eyeing on your favorite company or brand for sale event. Like their facebook page so you get first hand news immediately.

5. Re-gifting
You have gifts that you don't like or you don't use? Give it to somebody else that may like or need it. Nowadays, re-gifting is considered as socially acceptable. It's better to give it to someone rather than collecting dust, right?

6. Membership or credit card reward point
If your credit card or membership offer you reward point that you can redeem, go ahead and use it.

7. DIY
Save money and create unique gifts at the same time. Great :)

Thursday, December 13, 2012

New Marketplace: Carousell

Recently, I just found new marketplace app for iPhone, called Carousell. I have been using this app for over 1 month now and getting familiar with it. So, I decided to share something to you about this app.

Appearance and Layout
Good thing about this app is the menu and layout are in simple design. Navigating through the app is easy. The products are categorized into some categories so it makes product searching for buyers/viewers easy.

Selling Products
When you click on the "Sell" menu it will bring you to your iPhone camera functionality and you can snap your product's picture immediately. Convenient! You can also upload the pictures if you already have them taken from your picture library. Ah, don't forget, you can edit your pictures and add some effects.

Product Page
Another good thing is you don't need to fill so many fields before submitting your product. You just need to choose category where it falls into, type the item name and short description, and finally the price. While filling the item's title and description, you can also specify the location where you can make the deal with buyer.

I personally think it'll be better if there's a way seller can see how many view they get for each item.

Interaction with buyers and viewers
Buyers or viewers can make comment and make offer on each product page. Buyer and seller can extend their closed conversation after buyer makes an offer.

Carousell will consolidate all your activities summary into 1 page, called Activity. Too bad, each record is not clickable. I think it'll be better if it brings you to at least related product page every time you click on the activity record. 

Overall, it's a handy app to help you sell your things just from your phone. You can download the app from App Store and it's free. No harm to put your things to sell there and who knows you can find good bargain for yourself. You can download the app here

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Unusual Gifts To Get

Looking something unusual to give special someone? Check this out:

1. Magazine Subscription
SPH Magazine is having Christmas promotion where you get 30% off for 1-year subscription. Sign up here.

2. Beauty box Subscription
Bellabox has few types of boxes you can choose to give to your loved ones. You can choose to give 12, 6 or 3 months subscription. The fee is $19.95/month. Check out here.
Image credit to Bellabox Singapore
3. Learning Gift
Buy something that helps someone keep learning and improving. You may want to check for options online or from deal sites.

4. Vacation
Spending some quality time with loved ones is the best gift. Why not get a vacation package to somewhere new and feel the experience together? It will make bond between you and them stronger.

Get The Gift They Really Want

giftThe end of the year is coming fast. That means I need to quickly get the gifts for everyone I need to give.

Sometimes, getting gifts is not an easy thing. Most of the time when I browse (either online or offline) for the gifts, I end up choosing the things I would buy for myself rather than getting things that person likes or needs. It's good if that person actually likes or needs the thing but it sucks when the otherwise happen.

So, I'm consolidating some of tips that I personally use to pick a good gift for everyone:

1. Find for their wishlist on social media
Today, social media has become a common place for people to share their thoughts. You can use this to figure out what actually that person likes and doesn't like. Investigate all social media accounts they have.

2. Observe what they like to wear/use/have/do
Maybe from their belongings you get some hints what to get. It could be something to complement what they have already, something to replace the worn-out favorite things, or something from the same category.

3. Pay attention to all words they say during conversation, it may give you hint what they want this festive season as a gift.

4. Ask close person
It could be family members, friends, colleagues, etc. Ask for their cooperation not to say anything to that person.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Top Unwanted Holiday Gifts

I collected data from colleagues and friend, also based on few years observation and experiences.

Here are top unwanted gifts for holiday season. Try to avoid them when gifting unless you know that the person you're going to give likes or needs it.

(They are not in order)
1. Candles
2. Photo Frames
3. Aromatherapy Set
4. Mugs
5. Calendars
6. Novelty Gifts
7. Toiletries and Perfumes
8. Towels
9. Food (chocolate or biscuits)

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Gifts That Do Good

This holiday season why don't we pick unique gifts that also make us doing good?

WWF Singapore
There are many items from WWF gift shop that you can actually order and send to your loved ones as gift.
WWF Singapore has 4 sets of gift package you can choose:
- Love our Forests: Tiger
- Fight Climate Change: Polar Bear
- Protect our Earth: Panda
- Save our Seas: Dolphin

The gift package includes:
- plush toy
- a set of limited edition EZ-Link stickers
- a customized certificate. You can put your name or your loved ones on it
- a Singapore Seafood Guide

You can also get other items sold in Singapore here.

WWF Virtual Gift Shop
Alternatively, you can buy a virtual gifts from WWF. When you buy these gifts, you are helping WWF to save these endangered animals. WWF will send you a certificate with your name or your friends' name if you want to buy it as a gift. You can browse around the virtual gift shops here.
Virtual gifts from WWF

You may want to check WWF UK Gift Shop too for merchandises.

Happy shopping!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

DIY Coaster from Old Magazine

Do you have a stack of old magazines or booklets that you don't know what to do with it? Let's make something useful out of it. Here is 1 of bunch ideas you can make.

This tutorial will teach you how to make a simple coaster from an old magazine paper.

1. Prepare a piece of paper torn from old magazine or booklet.

2. Now, we need to get perfect square paper. From this position, take one edge, let's say left bottom, fold it to be aligned to the right edge of the paper.

3. Now you have a double triangle shape with excess paper. Fold the excess paper to the triangle, use the edge of the triangle as the guide. Cut this excess paper.

I used ruler to cut off the excess paper

4. You have perfect square paper! Because of previous folding, you'll see a line from 1 side to another side diagonally. We need to make another line so we get the center point.

5. Fold each corner of the paper to meet at the center point. Use clear tape to secure them.

6. You get a very big coaster at the moment. But it's too big and not thick enough, don't you think? Let's fold it again to make smaller and thicker paper coaster.

Flip the big coaster so the side with tape is below. You should see a center point on the coaster from previous folding. Bring again each corner to the center  point and tape them.

Okay, that's it! You get a DIY paper coaster made from old magazine. You can decorate the coaster to look nicer for you to use on your desk or as a gift.

8 Beautiful Books for Christmas Gift

If you're thinking to get book as gift for your loved ones this holiday season, you may want to check these books out. All these beautiful books are from Book Depository. Book Depository offers free worldwide shipping.

1. Narnia Pop-up Book, based on C.S Lewis
In this celebration of the classic series by C.S. Lewis, the world of Narnia comes alive with lavish pop-ups from world-renowned pop-up engineer Robert Sabuda.

SGD33.88, buy here

2. Christmas in New York Pop-up Book
This interactive pop-up book makes the perfect gift for those who love the holiday traditions that originated in New York - from lighting the tree in Rockefeller Center to watching the ball drop on New Year's Eve.CHRISTMAS IN NEW YORK is a spectacular gift book featuring the world-famous holiday traditions of New York City presented in the three-dimensional art of a pop-up book. Its unique construction combines original art by Chuck Fischer with photography of famous New York City landmarks and past holiday celebrations. Each pop-up spread will include short histories, architectural legacies, anecdotes, and fun facts contained in mini-pop-ups, pullouts, removable booklets, and other extras. Destined to become a treasured keepsake, CHRISTMAS IN NEW YORK has been a perennial bestseller for years to come.

SGD42.55, buy here

3. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: a Commemorative Pop-up Book
Robert Sabuda has created a resplendent pop-up version of "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the original publication. This glorious edition is told in a shorter version of L. Frank Baum's original text, with artwork in the style of W. W. Denslow. With sparkling touches of colored foil and Emerald City eyeglasses, this classic tale is certain to find an honored place on the family bookshelf.

SGD34.02, buy here

4. Mangoes and Bananas
Kanchil the mouse deer and his friend, Monyet the monkey, plant some trees and look forward to eating their fruit. When they are finally ripe, Monyet climbs the trees to pick them. But once he gets up there, Monyet can't resist eating all the fruit by himself - and Kanchil can't resist getting even. A deft and humourous re-telling of one of the best-loved tales in Indonesian folklore, Mangoes and Bananas features exquisite art in the traditional Kalamkari style of textile painting from southeast India.

SGD21.50, buy here

5. The Polar Express
Late on Christmas Eve, after the town has gone to sleep, a boy boards a mysterious train that waits for him: the Polar Express bound for the North Pole. When he arrives there, Santa offers him any gift he desires. The boy modestly asks for one bell from the reindeer's harness. It turns out to be a very special gift, for only believers in Santa can hear it ring.

SGD12.13, buy here

6. The Tiny Book of Tiny Stories: Volume 2
The universe isn't made of atoms; it's made of tiny stories. Praised by fans and critics alike, "The Tiny Book of Tiny Stories" has been one of the most beloved projects to come out of actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt's online creative coalition hit Record. With Volume 2, the journey continues with a fresh selection of stories small in scope but outsize in impact. To create "The Tiny Book of Tiny Stories" - half short story collection, half communal poem (Flavorwire) - Joseph Gordon-Levitt, known within the community as Regular JOE, directs thousands of collaborators to tell tiny stories through words and art. With the help of the entire creative collective, Joe culls, edits, and curates the massive numbers of contributions into a finely tuned collection that is at once ingeniously illustrated ...witty [and] meaningful ("Entertainment Weekly"). "The Tiny Book of Tiny Stories, Volume 2" once again brings together art and voices from around the world to unite and tell stories that defy size.

SGD18.32, buy here

7. Swan Lake
Bring Tchaikovsky's best-loved ballet to life in your very own ballet theatre, complete with dancers, music and story booklet. From the creators of "The Nutcracker" and "Sleeping Beauty" ballet boxes comes the most famous of Tchaikovsky's ballets, "Swan Lake". Open up the box to reveal a lavish theatre, complete with twirling dancers and scenery to change. Put on the CD, follow the story booklet and make your dancers pirouette along with the music! With a handy drawer in which to keep the scenery and dancing figures, this is the perfect gift for budding ballerinas.

SGD26.90, buy here

8. The World of Peter Rabbit - The Complete Collection of Original Tales 1-23

A box containing 23 Original "Peter Rabbit Books". It features the books that take you deep into the English countryside as you become familiar with the author's famous and (mostly!) lovable characters, from naughty Peter Rabbit himself, to tidy Mrs Tittlemouse and unlucky Jeremy Fisher.

SGD160.69, buy here

Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Amazon Black Friday Gift Guide For Musical Person

Gift guide for musical person to get from Amazon's Black Friday promotion:

1. Singing Machine SML-383 Portable CDG Player Karaoke Machine, Black (US$39.87)

  • Portable CDG karaoke system with disco lights and vertical loading CD compartment
  • 2 microphone jacks with separate volume controls-great for singing duets
  • Disco Light Effect
  • Auto voice control; balance and echo controls; built-in speakers; AC/DC power
  • Includes wired microphone and sampler disc

2.  Musician's Gear Tubular Guitar Stand Black (US$9.95)

  • Finish-safe rubber tubing
  • Folds up for easy transport

3.  Mendini 4/4 MV300 Solid Wood Violin in Satin Finish with Hard Case, Shoulder Rest, Bow, Rosin and Extra Strings - Full Size (US$59.99)

  • 4/4 (Full Size) violin with solid wood spruce top, maple back, neck and sides with beautiful satin varnish finish
  • Rosewood fingerboard, pegs chin rest, and alloy tailpiece with 4 built-in fine tuners
  • Brazil wood bow with unbleached genuine Mongolian horsehair
  • Includes: Lightweight hard case, adjustable shoulder rest, 2 bridges, quality rosin cake, and an extra set of violin strings.
  • 1 Year Warranty Against Manufacturer's Defects

4.  Memorex MKS-SS1 SingStand Home Karaoke System (US$59)

  • Dual microphone inputs for singing duets (one dynamic microphone included)
  • Auto Voice Control (AVC) is your built-in vocal guide
  • Connect keyboard to play with band
  • Cable management clips
  • Powerful speakers built into base (Two 4W speakers)

5.  Danelectro N10B Honey Tone Mini Amp in Burgundy (US$19.95)

  • Leather Handle
  • Clean and Overdrive Tone Settings
  • Belt Clip for Travel Use
  • Louder than most mini-amps
  • Offers a great clean, or overdriven sound

6.  Audio-Technica ATH-M30 Professional Headphones

  • Professional-quality closed-back cynamic stereo monitor headphones
  • Great choice for project studio engineers, home recordists and recording musicians
  • Adjustable cushioned headband and lightweight design for maximum comfort
  • Ultra-flexible 11-foot cable with single-side exit
  • Includes 3.5mm stereo connector with strain relief and professional and screw-on 1/4-inch adapter
  • OFC litz wire cable, convenient one-side exit