28 February 2014

Monthly Round up - We LOVED February

Another great month at The Ruby Orchard, here's a look back at what we have been up to...

// You met the rest of the team - Zak, Tsepi, Jenny & me in our 'meet the team' series.  Zak would love to have dinner with Denzel Washington, Hannah is a nerd and Tsepi loves Chocolate!

// We received some great new stock of signs and quotes for your home.

// Some of our creative suppliers answered some questions for us. Anja from Paper-tales cards, Nicky from Savage Jewellery and Neil from The Streets Furniture.  Check out our full 'Feature on Creative series' on the blog.

// Valentines love was in the air this month.  We had a little chuckle at all the last minute chaps dashing in to grab a gift for their loved ones late on Thursday 13th!

// We had a huge frame clearance with up to 75% off!  We still have some left... so pop in and grab a bargain!

// Our Exclusive shopper newsletter was launched! Sign up today to receive your 10% discount voucher!

// We took a trip to Durbs to stock up and grabbed a cuppa with Nadia Van Der Mescht.

// Finally we launched our Creative 'In Store' Workshop details and date.  Book now to avoid disappointment.


March... lets do this!

26 February 2014

Meet the team - Week 6 Hannah Keppler

The sad news is that it's our last week of our 'Meet the team' series (awww) fear not for the good news is we've left the best for last! If it wasn't for this lovely young English lady there wouldn't be this gorgeous new shop in Howick to buy yourself or your loved ones something nice. The 3 words Hannah describes herself as (obviously minus her husbands) is spot on - read on to find out exactly what they are....

1// What were you doing before you started working at The Ruby Orchard?
Somersaults, Round offs, umpiring, hurdling, dancing... I was a PE teacher for almost 10 years and loved it, loved the people I worked with, loved the funny things 11 year olds came out with, loved the school ski trips. I hated the hours, the marking and working impossibly hard for average remuneration. Hats off to teachers.

2// What do you like most about your role at The Ruby Orchard?
The freedom and creativity that working for yourself gives you.

3// When you were younger what did you want to be when you grew up?!
A PE teacher... I never wanted to do anything else and never thought I would do anything else.  Now loving my new challenge.

4// Describe yourself in 3 words!
Reliable, Easygoing... I asked my husband for the third... he said 'nerd'! I think he means efficient!

5// What do you on your days off?
Rest, eat, sleep, drive, meander, shop, play - all with my hubby and our little chap.

6// 2 truths and 1 lie about yourself
One peanut could kill me.
I am an exercise fanatic and run at least 4 times a week.
I don't like animals very much, especially those who live inside.

7// I never leave home without…
A handbag full of diggers, trucks, juice and little boy pants.

8// What’s your....
Top Song – Mr Jones - Counting Crows
Top Food - Pizza
Top beverage – Traditional, old fashioned style lemonade
Top Place – Mid Devon, England
Top movie – Slumdog Millionaire

9// Imagine you are heading out for dinner with a bunch of famous bods - who would be sitting around the table with you?
Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Aniston, James Corden, Miranda Hart, Sarah Millican - American superstars meet British comedy Genius'!

If you'd like to read more about Hannah's South African journey click here.

25 February 2014

A Creative 'In store' Workshop


We are so excited to launch our Creative 'In store' Workshop!

Sunday 1st June 2014

Since opening The Ruby Orchard we have creative entrepreneurs approaching us weekly asking us to stock their products.   As soon as we engage in dialogue regarding wholesale prices, mark ups, margins and exclusivity the creative is often unprepared with answers, confused and negotiations are often met with fear!
At The Ruby Orchard we are in a unique position and want to help creatives grow using a retailers point of view.

We have set a date and are inviting creatives to join us for an interactive workshop that will assist them in getting their products onto the shelves of independent retail stores.

For an investment of R450 (1st course offer price) the workshop will cover:
  • How to select the best shops for your products
  • The best way to approach shop with your products
  • How to pitch your products
  • Formats, layouts and IT advice for your catalogues and order forms
  • How to price your products for wholesale and negotiation tactics
  • The advantages and disadvantages of consignments and exclusivity
  • How to use personal touches to create great relationships with shop owners
  • How to make the shop work for you to grow your product and brand
The wonderfully knowledgeable creative consultant Nadia Van Der Mescht has come on board and will be sponsoring and attending the workshop.

Places are limited so booking early is going to be essential - for more details and a registration form contact Hannah and Nicola - therubyorchard@hotmail.com

24 February 2014

Feature on Creative: The Streets furniture

2 weeks ago the above arrived in our shop and with great joy we installed it into a special corner of it's own. Dressed with beautiful Urchin Art mugs and Foreva candles this furniture set looked deliciously ready for our guests to arrive! We've had many compliments on our new addition to our furniture collection and it's all thanks to Neil from The Streets furniture. 
We asked Neil a few questions about how The Streets came about and what his plans are for the future. Read on to find out more....

1// How did The Streets Furniture begin? When / where / how did it all start? 
It all started about 4 years ago. I was busy completing my bachelor of music at varsity and all though i love and still compose music, I was not loving the pressure of that particular environment, needless to say I was looking for a new creative outlet. My father owns a large timber mill and I used to enjoy tinkering about in his factory, one day a friend came and saw us and wanted to know if I could build a dining room table, we agreed!and after a loooooong time and many painful mistakes along the way the table was birthed and thus 'The Streets Furniture' began. From then on friends and family started asking me to build furniture for their homes ,which i was happy to do, and now I have my own style of furniture which i supply to people all over the country.

2// Why do you do what you do? 
I do it because I love the medium of wood, I love the ways it looks, feels and especially smells! I guess i'm just a creative person and get a kick out of turning imagination into reality, Its a very satisfying process, especially since what i'm creating is tangible.

3// When you were younger what did you want to be when you grew up?!
I wanted to be exactly what i am now to be honest, a wood worker and a musician. I'm still grappling with what it means to be those things but I feel that in many ways I am living my dream.

4// What inspires you when designing new products?
I enjoy scouring the internet for new ideas, obviously the reclaimed/green furniture is very 'in' at the moment. So I try to incorporate that as much as I can but I especially enjoy the clean lines of steel in conjunction with the unpredictability of timber. Basically if it's going to look good and its made from timber, i'm inspired!

5// What are your hopes and dreams for your products?
Through eyes of faith I see the Streets becoming a well known contemporary furniture brand with range of unique products that are instantly recognizable! A set range of products as opposed to a my rad of different custom made products like i have been doing. I also see several outlets for my own and others designs.

6// About you… 
What’s your - Top Song? where I end you begin by Radiohead
Top Food? Hmm Ive just been to Cape Town so sea food I'd say
Top beverage? Good old coke o cola
Top Place? Anywhere in Switzerland

7// Imagine you are heading out for dinner with a bunch of creative geniuses - who would be sitting around the table with you? 
Steve Jobs would definitely be one of them if he was still alive, his philosophy on design and the general aesthetic of his products are absolutely remarkable, I'd pick his brain about as many things as possible, Thom Yorke and Matthew Bellamy would also need to be there as I don them as some of the all time creative geniuses in music!

21 February 2014

A trip to Durban to stock up!

Nicola and I had been planning a trip to Durban for a couple of  months.  We had suppliers to see, new products to collect, places to search and came home with a car full of goodies!

New faux plants & orchids... great for hot verandas and for useless gardeners like myself.

Mini Carafes and Coke boxes

Lampshades - made from coffee bean sacks

New chunky vintage style glass storage jars

New stock of signs by Oak & Willow

We had a gorgeous lunch at St Clements (Musgrave Road)... you must try the Gormet Chicken peri peri sandwiches!

We even managed to squeeze in a catch up and brainstorm with our creative consultant Nadia Van der Mescht. I always feel positive, enthused and inspired after seeing her.

I don't get to Durban often enough.  Nadia wrote a post for Grazia in December with the best places for swimming, cocktails and breakfasts in Durban and surrounding area - click here to have a read. I think I'll go again soon!

19 February 2014

Meet the team - Week 5 Tsepi Molefe

The Ruby Orchard

Week 5 of Meet the Team ALREADY! Boo only one week left of our mini series left. This week we've asked Tsepi, our handy help whose willing to do almost anything, a few questions. I love her choice of dinner partners - dinner with Queen from Generations would be a hoot! 

1// My guilty pleasure is… 

2// My favourite thing about summer… 
Short skirts

3// A song that makes you happy, ever single time? 
Zahara - phendula

4// The movie you just can’t get enough of… 
Diary of a mad black woman

5// What’s the perfect drink to quench your thirst? 
Creme Soda

6// 2 famous people you’d love to have dinner with?
Nicholas & Sophie Ndaba

7// Favourite thing to do in the Midlands?

18 February 2014

Random Acts of Kindness


Welcome to our Exclusive Ruby Orchard Shopper Launch!

At The Ruby Orchard we like to keep things fresh, searching for new products is on our weekly task sheet. We only order small quantities of products to ensure that you don't see the same items every time you visit us and are wowed by what is new!

We have created a newsletter for those of you who like to stay ahead!

By signing up to our newsletter you will receive a monthly email jam packed with exclusive sneak peaks of new product arrivals, special offers, discount vouchers, information about up and coming sales, invites to events and much much more!

A kind act from us to you, just because - Everyone who signs up in to our exclusive Ruby Orchard Shopper newsletter during February & March will receive a 10% discount.

So what are you waiting for....??

Sign up now....

13 February 2014

Meet the Team - Week 4 Jenny Cherry

Wow, already week 4 of our little 'Meet the Team' mini series! This year seems to be flying!
This week we are introducing you to the lovely Jenny who works in our back offices ensuring all the numbers add up and our accounts are paid on time.

1// The best thing I ever bought from The Ruby Orchard was… 
My scarf

2// My guilty pleasure is… 

3// What’s on your desk? 
Plenty of accounting papers etc

4// My favourite thing about summer… 
The twitter of the birds in the early morning

5// A song that makes you happy, ever single time? 
Joshua Kadison - You are beautiful in my eyes

6// The movie you just can’t get enough of… 

7// What’s the perfect drink to quench your thirst? 
Ice cold coca cola

8// Flowers or scatter cushions? 

9// 2 famous people you’d love to have dinner with? 
George Clooney & Helen Zilla

10// Favourite thing to do in the Midlands? 
Drive along the Midlands Meander, browse in the shops and have something to eat & drink at some of the coffee shops/restaurants. 

10 February 2014

Feature on Creative: Savage Jewellery

Our new range of jewellery, designed & created by Nicky Savage, arrived in store last week and just in time for Valentine's day! Sterling Silver hearts, stars and geometric shape necklaces and earrings are all in store now. Read on to find out more about Savage Jewellery...

How did Savage Jewellery begin? When / where / how did it all start? 
It started about 13 years ago in Durban. After completing my 4th year in Jewellery Design I knew I did not want to work in the commercial world of jewellery. Luckily while studying I was making and selling so it was an easy progression as I had already got a clientele base.

Why do you do what you do? 
I love making jewellery and the designing and coming up with new ideas. I knew I wanted to work in a creative field. I studied Fine Art first because I wasn’t sure which field I wanted to be in. It was while at Tech the first time that I got exposed to Jewellery and I knew that it was what I wanted to do. I love the creation of these little bits of adornment that you will have for the rest of your life.

When you were younger what did you want to be when you grew up?! 
I wanted to be a teacher, nurse, fashion designer – I really had no idea what I really wanted to be.

What inspires you when designing new products?
It can be anything from my surroundings. It could be an interesting detail on a building or an interesting piece of furniture. The shape of the pebbles I have collected from the beach.

What are your hopes and dreams for your products?
I hope that when someone buys a piece that they will have it forever. Even though they might not wear it for a couple of years; they will pull it out and wear it again.

About you…
What’s your - Top Song? Top Food? Top beverage? Top Place? Top movie? 
Top song – Massive Attack – Hymn of the Big Wheel
Top food – all food, I love it, just don’t give me offal
Top beverage – White wine a Sauvignon Blanc
Top place – a beach cottage on the South Coast with friends
Top movie – The Pillow Book

Imagine you are heading out for dinner with a bunch of creative geniuses - who would be sitting around the table with you? 
Malcolm Gladwell, Paul Smith, Tom Dixon, Ray and Charles Eames, Yottam Ottelinghi

07 February 2014

Feature on Creative: Papertales

We are thrilled to introduce you to Anja, the creative behind our new range of beautiful and quirky cards which seem to flying out the store! Anja's cards are sprinkled with cheeky humour and gorgeous designs, perfect for birthdays, weddings and even Valentines day! Read on to find out more about Anja and her Papertales cards...

1// How did Papertales begin? When / where / how did it all start?
It all began with a love story...For our wedding day I made all the decoration, invites and other bits and bobs out of paper. I loved creating things out of paper and finally screwed up my courage, took the leap and started something that is now rooted in passion. http://www.theprettyblog.com/wedding/mark-anja-old-castle-brewery-wedding/

2// Why do you do what you do?
Because it makes my heart smile to come up with weird and wonderful creations.

3// When you were younger what did you want to be when you grew up?! 
Anything that would have allowed me to travel and explore our incredible world.

4// What inspires you when designing new products?
Pinterest, various blogs and humour. My ideas tend to pop into my head just as I am about to fall asleep and I then create and play with designs in my dreams. The challenge is trying to recreate that idea onto paper the following day.

5// What are your hopes and dreams for your products?
I would love to one day have my items in stores all around the world. And maybe even own a little shop myself.

6// About you… 
What’s your - Top Song? "All I want is you" from the Juno soundtrack
Top Food? A am a bit of a fruitbat and am slightly addicted to litchis
Top beverage? Granadilla Martini
Top Place? Definitely Paris!
Top movie? Amelie is my all-time favourite

7// Imagine you are heading out for dinner with a bunch of creative geniuses - who would be sitting around the table with you?
I am fascinated by graffiti street artists and would love to meet some of them in person; DalEast, Faith47,NardStar, Ghostpatrol to mention but a few. (On my instagram feed you can see some of the beauty that our streets hold) http://instagram.com/love4papertales

05 February 2014

Meet the team - Week 3 Zak Sithole

Zak is the wonder hands behind all our Rustic mirrors, frames and upcycled furniture. Read on to find out more about the guy behind our lovely up-cycled products....

Upcycled furniture - The Ruby Orchard

1// My guilty pleasure is… 
Listening to my Barry Manilow greatest hits CD.

2// My favourite thing about summer… 
Chilling at the beach when the sun sets

3// A song that makes you happy, every single time? 

4// The movie you just can’t get enough of… 
Harold & Kumar - Go to white castle

5// What’s the perfect drink to quench your thirst? 
Sports drink, water is the best choice to stay hydrated, a sports drink is more appealing after water becomes rather bland to any taste buds.

6// Flowers or scatter cushions? 
Scatter cushions

7// 2 famous people you’d love to have dinner with? 
Princess Diana & Denzel Washington

03 February 2014

Lovely, Lovely gifts for your Valentine!

With Valentines day just around the corner we have stocked up on some lovely, lovely gifts and the cutest range of cards, gift bags and gift wrap for that special someone.

Hanging hearts from R15
Pretty Jugs from R65
Teatowels with chunky hearts R80
Cards from R27
Personalised framed prints from R195
Gift Bags from R16

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