Unique Oriental Gifts, Teas & Home Ware | Gifts of the Orient
Gifts Of The Orient
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Oriental Style Gifts, Tea Sets, Teas & Homeware
Gifts Of The Orient - the stories behind our products;
The legend of the Maneki Neko Lucky Cat
Maneki Neko is Japanese for “Beckoning Cat” with a raised paw to gesture; “Please come in you are welcome”. The cat is usually depicted as a Japanese bobcat.
As with most legends there are many versions that have evolved over time and I like this version especially of how the Maneki Neko;
In 17th century Tokyo, there was priest who looked after a poverty stricken temple. The priest though poor and hungry was still kind and looked after his pet cat, Tama. The priest shared what little food he had with Tama.
However the priest’s situation was becoming worse as the temple was becoming more dilapidated and there was a terrible storm approaching. Tama the cat sat on the temple’s porch while the storm broke. Near by stood a wealthy important noble man, who was trying to shelter from the lashing rain. The noble noticed the cat and was startled to see the cat waving to him. He went to investigate the beckoning cat. As he approached the temple a bolt of lighting descended from the black clouds and hit the tree he had been sheltering under.
The noble man’s life had been saved and so the noble man became friends with the priest and his cat Tama. The temple became prosperous and the priest and his cat never went hungry again.
After living a long and happy life the priest buried Tama in the temple’s cat cemetery and to show his love and respect the Maneki Neko was made in Tama’s honour.
From that time on it is customary to have a Maneki Neko in your place of business or home to bring visitors and good luck.
If you are lucky enough to be the proud owner of a range style cooker then it could soon be home to one of many cast iron tea pots that come as part of a splendid selection. The cast iron tea pots look cultured within culinary areas and they’ll make welcome additions to many range cookers. Many of the cast iron tea pots come in the Japanese Tetsubin styles and are delightful to look at and are capable of adding charm to your kitchen.
Originally, cast iron tea pots were used predominantly in China but in the 17th century the Japanese started to use them. They transformed what was once just a functional item and gave it an exquisite exterior which can enliven its surroundings.
You might be reluctant to use one of the cast iron tea pots for fear of causing it damage but they are extremely hard wearing and are capable of boiling water on a daily basis. Boil water in one of the cast iron tea pots and when you drink a cup of tea you’ll appreciate the taste even more than you usually do.
The ranges of cast iron tea pots make striking features when placed on range cookers and they are certainly more pleasing to look at then mass produced kettles.
There is something special about tea that has been made in the cast iron tea pots as it certainly is more refreshing than your usual brew. Use one of the cast iron tea pots to make your morning cuppa and you can sit and reflect whilst being refreshed by the perfect cup of tea.
The culture and wisdom of the orient has begun to influence the Western World and we now benefit by having many Japanese and Chinese inspired products within our society. One such oriental product that western folk enjoy is sake or rice wine that’s been produced in Japan.
At one time sake was the primary alcoholic drink in Japan but the introduction of other types of wines, spirits and beers gradually saw to a decline in the consumption of sake in that country. However, sake has become more popular in western society over recent years and more and more homes now enjoy a cup or two of the beverage.
To best enjoy sake it’s worth investing in Japanese sake sets so you can fully appreciate the experience of drinking the wine.
Typically, Japanese sake sets consist of a sake jug that’s accompanied by a number of cups. You can buy Japanese sake sets that come with just two cups which are ideal for intimate evenings, or other types of sets that come with four cups for when you are entertaining friends. The delightful designs on the Japanese sake sets are beautiful to behold and when they aren’t being used they’ll make fine features in your home.
Why not invest in a little piece of the orient and purchase Japanese sake sets to enjoy wonderful wine from?
We are well renowned for being a nation that likes a nice drop of tea but that doesn’t mean to say we sample all types of tea on a daily basis. We might like our tea but the majority of us opt for tea that comes in bags direct from the supermarket shelves. This is a shame because there’s a World of teas out there just waiting to treat our taste buds to a drinking sensation of the highest order. Take Japanese and Chinese white and greens teas for instance.
The refreshing varieties of Japanese and Chinese white and green teas not only make a nice cuppa, they are good for our bodies too. In fact, it has been claimed that by drinking Japanese and Chinese white and green teas our digestive system can be much healthier.
Years ago it was quite difficult to obtain varieties of Japanese and Chinese white and green teas but in our modern society and with the advent of the World wide-web it now is a simple process. Moreover, there are suppliers to be found on the internet who have plenty of the Japanese and Chinese white and green teas in stock so customers can always have plenty of these products in their kitchens.
The varieties of the Japanese and Chinese white and green teas vary in composition while they all benefit by having antioxidant agencies. For anyone who likes a refreshing cup of tea but would like to switch to more healthy varieties, ranges of Japanese and Chinese white and green teas can make splendid alternatives
Take your essential fragrances with you on your journey
Aromatherapy Necklaces with mini oil Amphora & Jade bead thread - Soothing waves from deep within the ceramic
These Aromatherapy Necklaces are based on tri-colour glazed ceramics technology originating in the Tang Dynasty of China. Our supplier has added resent scientific research to the ceramic process and now uses 20 kinds of mineral & porcelain clays to produce jewellery and other items that radiate soothing infrared waves that are similar to those produced by the human body. These wave forms are said to “enhance health, to improve metabolism, slow down the process of aging, improve the skin, lower hypertension and support the human cells in general.”
Our supplier has backed up its claims with International Patents, Certificates and Exhibitions, and also refers to a series of studies in Japan, America and Taiwan.
Method of use;
Place a few drops of your favourite Aromatherapy Essential oil onto the cotton bud inside the mini Amphora and wear the Aromatherapy Necklace to gain benefits from both the oil and the infrared waves throughout the day
The Art of Calligraphy
Calligraphy developed historically in many parts of the world as a way of taking records, as a way of producing art and often as a spiritual way of depicting deeper meanings of the after life. Examples of Calligraphy can be found in the West, in the Central Americas, in the Middle & Far East, and have taken the form of both carvings and brush based techniques.
Examples of the standardised system introduced as early as the 220 BC by the Imperial Court in China have been found and have developed over time into more stylised versions, making it easier to handwrite and therefore increasing the literacy rate. Both Chinese and Japanese Calligraphy are also well known for the deep effects they have on both the viewer and the artist, who will still the mind and match breathing to the brush strokes.
Our products are primarily associated with the type of calligraphy produced in China and Japan.
For the novice, a good starting point would be to acquire a Calligraphy set with brushes, a soap stone stamp, a mixing bowl and ink. This can be supplemented with Rice paper books and topped up with both the traditional black ink sticks and the more modern coloured versions.
Calligraphy sets have proved to be very popular as they represent very substantial gifts for a reasonable price, and can be used both as a talking point, a display on the shelf and of course as an introduction to the art itself.
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