Finding gifts for our friends that are not from Australia, who may or may not be living here can be a little daunting. Gift purchasing in general can be a little daunting, especially when you don’t know the person very well. We all have those people we need to buy for whom we don’t know very well, and I think we all will feel a little awful to buy something that is junkie or tacky. We really like to buy things that are also in line with our own values.
There are some strategies you can apply when buying gifts for people you don’t know very well which work. The best strategy is to get something that is meaningful – meaningful means that it has a story. Maybe the gift is artistic, it might be hand-made, it might be a gift that is giving back to the community in some way, it might be something sustainable that won’t harm the environment. Another strategy to use is to get something that is practical. Gone are the days of people buying gifts of no use. I think we all are sick of clutter in our homes and knowing that all of that is going towards landfill which is also harming our environment. So get something that has some practical use, a mug used for hot drinks (who wouldn’t use a mug?), a tea-towel perhaps. It would be a double whammy if you got something with meaning AND it was practical at the same time. Another strategy I find works is to ask a shop keeper what is hot at the moment. You mind find that what is hot at the moment is going to have a story and be practical of course.
When looking for something for a foreign friend, getting something local can be the goal. You want them to experience something that they wouldn’t normally experience in their home. So a 3rd strategy is to get something unique/different and that might just be something very local to Australia. A good example would be something with Aboriginal art, they would be hard pressed to find something like that in their own country. A perfect gift would be something that has all 3 elements: it has a story, is practical and its local.
Below you will find 5 gift ideas which have some or all of those elements:
How about this Aboriginal fine bone china mug? It is designed by authentic aboriginal artist Kathleen Buzzacott and even has the story of the design imprinted on the inside of the mug.
You can use this ceramic trivet to place your hot pots on, very practical!! It also has a beautiful story about Kinship and the artwork is designed by authentic Aboriginal artist Melanie Hava.
Add a candle to this carousel and the heat from the flame will spin the koalas. The magic of the moment will bring back memories of the cuddly stuffed night-time companion found on the beds of many Aussie kids. The real-life koalas, found mostly in Eastern Australia, also love their bed. After gorging on food, they can sleep up to 22 hours a day in the crooks of branches of the eucalyptus tree.
Coasters always come in handy, not many people out there don’t have coasters in their homes. And these beautiful ceramic coasters boast the gorgeous Australian Wildflower designs – such as this amazing flowering gum with a popular Major Mitchell cockatoo.
I am sure you have all heard of Uluru! Uluru, also known as Ayres Rock rises 348 metres above the desert plain. The majestic red sandstone dome is sacred to the aboriginal people who believe that it is home to the spirits of their ancestors. A memorable experience for visitors are the breathtaking changes in the colour of Uluru… from daylight to dawn, the colour of Uluru varies from grey to mauve, to red and then a golden hue.