Updated: Nov 2, 2020
I have always loved a hamper. Working in London, Christmas was an exciting time, always wondering what this year’s corporate gifts would bring, how many Fortnum & Mason hampers would arrive. I always felt incredibly privileged that I was able to receive one. What mysterious contents would spill from the basket? How can you not get excited working through the layers and seeing what you have?
We must all admit that 2020 has not been the year that any us of anticipated, it has posed challenges none of us expected and forced many of us to do things differently; and birthdays and Christmas have to be included in that. We still don’t know how our family Christmas will look this year, and for many how they will be able to shop for gifts.
Hampers could be the answer. They can be tailored to anyone of any age and are an idea that has stood the test of time, right back to the 11th century. The willow hamper that everyone thinks of, was a vessel for carrying food and drinks for hunting parties and was originally a French idea which they introduced to the English. 19th Century Victorians then took this idea even further. The great industrial revolution gave us railroads and transport hubs that we had never had before, and the Victorians used these to their advantage. It became easy to send a basket full of luxuries to family and friends. They became a statement of wealth and fortune as well as a way of saying thank you to the staff “under stairs”.
The traditional hamper is based on this with seasonal produce, meat, and preserved fruits, produce of the estate and made by their kitchens, to ensure everybody had plenty to enjoy over the festive period. Over the years they have changed, they are not just food but cover off a whole array goods from food to clothing. They are given on birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, for baby showers, and for pets. Hampers have come a long way since the 11th century that is for sure.
This year, more than ever before, I have bought local, from deliveries of fruit and vegetables from the local farmers and butcher, jams and preserves from local markets even candles. I have recycled, upcycled, ordered online, just like everyone else. I have worried and I stressed over friends and family and lost them in this horrible pandemic. And then I started to look at how I was going to source Christmas this year. At the same time my friend wanted something now her children were both of school age and another something to build on, and after a brief conversation an idea was born, The Suffolk Hamper Company.
We wanted to share with you the outstanding quality and good taste we have found on our own doorsteps this year. You will find still find loads of gorgeous traditional Christmas goodies in our boxes, some local delicacies and some from other areas that made by some of the great artisan makers in the country. We don’t use willow, rattan, or seagrass baskets, but recycled cardboard and wood wool as we want to have recycled and recyclable products. Even our cellophane bags are recyclable.
If you, like us, are stressed, busy at work and struggling with the concept that Christmas is nearly upon us once more then maybe we can help. While you are tidying up all those loose ends, finalising projects and deals before the years ends, we are here for you. This year don’t leave it to the last min to shop. Hampers have an appeal that has endured through centuries, they are the ideal gift option, especially at Christmas because they can made to suit any recipient or occasion, from friends, family, staff, and customers. Everything is handpicked and packed with as much care and attention as if it were for our closest, most loved family member. If we wouldn’t give to them, it will not come out to you, and we are happy to work with you to cover all ages, as most of our hampers are bespoke. We will look after your staff if needed too!