17 June 2004
Ideal Home(HKTDC Electronics, Vol 06,2004)
Beauty & Bathroom Products
Hats & Caps
Sunny Industries Co Ltd's latest silver-plated collection for an ideal table setting features rectangular relish dishes, candleholders and napkin rings
Beautifying the home is a task dear to the heart of every homemaker. Realising this, Hong Kong manufacturers have been making use of traditional Chinese arts and crafts to produce elegant, and sturdy, furniture and home accessories.
Sophisticated silverware, for instance, is the specialty of Sunny Industries Co Ltd. "Our silverware, plus chrome and nickel-plated pieces, are not only practical but also classy objects to decorate dining tables," says sales manager Lam Hau Man.
"Our silverware collection is also favoured by customers worldwide. We are committed to producing top quality products, using the finest materials and meticulous workmanship to make objects that will beautify any home. In addition, costs are carefully controlled to offer the most competitive prices," adds Lam.
The company also produces tableware items, such as serving trays and candleholders, which make attractive gifts. The bases are made of iron or stainless steel from Japan, which is then plated with silver from the UK.
"We sell to leading retail stores in our major market, the US, including Wal-Mart, and also to hotel chains. We generally produce under the customer's own brand name," says Lam.
Skilled craftsmen produce about 50,000 items each month at the company's 3,000-square-metre factory in Dongguan on the Chinese mainland. A minimum order is one TEU and delivery time is about 40 days after an order is confirmed.
Practical table accessories are also among the products from Tak Keung Industrial Ltd, including ice buckets, candleholders, cheese plates and wine holders.
"These days, we plate more items with chrome or nickel," says sales manager Joseph Chong. "The new generation prefers this because silver needs to be cleaned regularly and young people do not have the time."
Major markets are in Europe - France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Sweden and the UK - where customers put quality first, says Chong, unlike the US market, where low cost is a major factor.
"We sell to major retail chains in Europe, including Carrefour and WMF and we produce under their names. However, we also have our own team of designers and our customers usually accept our creations," explains Chong.
Established in 1995, the company produces 400,000 items a month. A minimum order is 300 pieces or 10 cartons, and delivery is 30-45 days after confirmation. FOB Hong Kong unit prices average US$6.50.
The firm's 4,000-square-metre mainland factory in Guangdong Province employs 120 workers that fashion zinc alloy from Australia and iron, stainless steel and brass sheeting from Japan into attractive tableware items.
On the furniture front, the speciality of Senses Creative Station Co Ltd, which was established in 2001, is high quality reproductions.
"Our reproduction antiques use lacquer, jade, mother-of-pearl and fine woods to create beautiful pieces," says director Yau Ming. "Our furniture is all authentic and the designs are carefully researched. We use mahogany, oak, cherry wood and walnut, and experienced Chinese craftsmen are employed in our mainland factory. We have a worldwide reputation, and our furniture can be seen in many hotels and homes in the US and Europe."
Only 100 of the quality pieces are produced each month, while a minimum order is one TEU and the lead time is 3-4 months. "Each piece is finely crafted and the process cannot be rushed," says Yau.
The company, which employs 100 skilled craftsmen at its factory in Guangzhou, offers items of furniture at prices ranging from US$300-1,500 each FOB Hong Kong.
Another company in the furniture sector, Oriental Arts & Furniture, has been authorised by individual museums and private collectors to reproduce historical items for worldwide distribution.
"We work closely with a number of well known furniture makers in North America and Europe to make fine handcrafted chinoiserie, Chippendale, antique country furniture and decorated folding screens," says marketing coordinator Joe Hung.
"We design and manufacture lacquer furniture of great beauty and decorative value for export to world markets."
The reproduction antique furniture is sold by leading retailers such as Bloomingdale's and Neiman Marcus in New York, and is also used in hotel chains like the Ritz-Carlton and the Peninsula Group.
"We enjoy a worldwide reputation for creative designs, superb craftsmanship and response services," claims Hung.
Founded in 1973, the company has built up a global reputation based upon the quality of its products. "We use craftsmen and artists on the Chinese mainland to do the woodcarving and painting," says Hung. "Those available in Hong Kong use a different technique and we prefer the traditional methods."
A 30,000-square-foot factory on the mainland employs 150 craftsmen and artists to produce a small quantity of fine pieces every month. FOB Hong Kong unit prices range from US$300-1,000, while a minimum order is six pieces in any style or a minimum order value of US$5,000. Major markets include the US, Canada, Qatar, Kuwait and Singapore.
It seems the world is realising that Hong Kong manufacturers have the knack when it comes to making homes more beautiful.
WRITTEN BY WINSOME LANE
Spectrum Products Co Ltd
23-25 Ashley Rd
Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
Sunny Industries Co Ltd
Rm A, 10/F
On Shing Ind Bldg
2-16 Wo Liu Hang Rd
Fo Tan, New Territories
Tak Keung Industrial Ltd
Flat A, 7/F
Cheong Tai Ind Bldg
50-56 Fui Yiu Kok St
Tsuen Wan, New Territories