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Super Shots(HKTDC Enterprise, Vol 01,2008)

Photo Frames & Albums


Classic photo frames from China Team Ltd are made with materials such as wood from New Zealand and polyresin from the Chinese mainland

While the technology for taking photos changes, the innately human desire to prominently display favourite images never does

Striving for innovation and functional enhancement, Hong Kong supplies photo frames and albums that will put a big smile on the face of any trendy user.

For example, Asia Trading Co offers a curved, two-sided album in aluminium with a silver inlay (PB-MTD-H2-4). "This is something new, and a very special design that buyers don't see elsewhere. It is our most unusual and best-selling photo album," says Senior Marketing Executive Merry Pong.

"The album holds 48 photos in 24 transparent pockets while standing frame-like to display additional photos on the front and back covers," adds Ms Pong. "It stands easily so that both sides are visible."

The company also finds success with multi-opening frames such as its MDF model KHL-M54-86-JN1-8, which boasts six windows for displaying three 2x3-inch photos and another three at 2.5x2.5 inches.

"We recently developed a few multi-window frames and have since learned that our customers are very interested," Ms Pong notes.

Asia Trading's other leading items include an MDF frame with a metal inlay (KBF-A3-86-JN5-H5); a hammered-look, wide-border aluminium frame with metal inlay (YCA-HK6-G21-2-4), and a silk-screen glass frame with a radial pattern (SCA-P369-4).

"We have designers in Hong Kong and on the Chinese mainland," Ms Pong advises. "Customers can always find new items in our showroom."

Just as delightful are albums featuring self-adhesive or pocketed pages, and various bindings such as spiral, ring, thermal, post and perfect, from Essential Industries Ltd.

Among highly popular varieties is model 76001, a five-in-one album library for 240 photos. Each of the five thin volumes accepts 48 3x5-inch pictures, while every page has three pockets. Together, the books fit snugly into a colourful box.

"This item excels in Asia," Sales and Marketing Manager William Liu remarks. "Its advantage is that when showing photos to friends you don't need to hold a huge book. Other albums, ones with hundreds of photos inside, can get too bulky."

He adds that each book cover shows a different pattern while those in the same set share common themes such as scenery, flowers or sports.

Another hot seller is model 76012, a perfect-bound Super 200 album with 100 double-pocketed pages, making it good for 200 photos measuring 4x6 inches each.

"A special pocket in the middle of the album holds memo inserts, probably for notes about the people, places, dates and other details," Mr Liu explains, adding that the inside pages are PP.

"We have machines to convert PP pulp into sheets," he notes, adding that PP sheets also feature in model 76455, a 100-page album designed to hold 300 photos of 3x5 inches each.

Among other popular photo frames from Essential are versatile models with hooks for hanging and feet for standing, such as model 71066 that comes in foil and measures 160x190mm.

"The shiny foil frame creates a sense of metal - silver or gold - but it's paperboard inside and we use foil-paper to wrap it," Mr Liu points out.

The hooks-and-feet range also includes house-shaped model 71093. "With this product, we wanted something different. As the customers wish, we can use any colour or switch to other interesting shapes," says Mr Liu.

Creativity also characterises the range from Hang Fung Mfy Co Ltd, which describes its frames and albums as high-class and trendy.

"Our main raw material is aluminium," advises Manager Angus Cheung. "It's better than steel or other metals - prices are cheaper, production is faster and we can do lots of different finishes."

One well-received product is model YA 141COS, a Love photo frame with a heart-shaped pattern and a frosted, shiny silver finish. "It holds a 4x6-inch image, which is a popular standard size," Mr Cheung says, "but we'll make other sizes too."

Frame model YAJ 49SPI-9, also with a shiny silver finish, is readily available for 4x6- 5x7- or 8x10-inch pictures and has a silk-screened pattern beneath an epoxy finish. "We can change to different colours or patterns," Mr Cheung notes.

Model ACF 8146, a modern frame for 4x6-inch images, comes with a frosted and matt-silver finish. "This one demonstrates to the customers that our products can have rounded corners," Mr Cheung says.

Meanwhile, model YBD 02CFK is a rectangular frame with a curved silver finish and crystal at its top and sides. It displays pictures sized 4x6, 5x7 or 8x10 inches.

Model WD 8149, a heart-shaped frame for 3x3-inch images, features pearl-blue finishing. FB 01CF, ideal for 4x6- or 3x3-inch wedding photos, has a wedding ring decoration and a brushed-silver finish.

"Using silk-screen printing on the frames, we can add any words or messages that customers may wish," Mr Cheung says. "Our frames have very modern designs, and each week our design team on the Chinese mainland works on different ideas. We can help customers with their ideas too."

Clearly, satisfying buyer demands is a snap for Hong Kong manufacturers of photo albums and frames.



Fast Fact

Asia Trading Co
Unit 401, Tower II
South Seas Centre
75 Mody Rd
Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2429-2018
Fax: 852-2487-1105
Web: www.asia.com.hk
Year Established: 1969
Major Product Categories: photo frames, albums, clocks, jewellery/music boxes and desktop accessories
Brands & Certificates: 21st Century
Minimum Order: 1,000 pieces
Monthly Production Capacity: 3 million units
Delivery Time: 45-60 days
Factory Size & Location: 400,000 square feet; Yantian, Dongguan
Workforce: 1,500
China Team Ltd
Unit 103
Charmay Centre
12 Ka Hing Rd
Kwai Fong, New Territories
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2370-1680
Fax: 852-2370-1668
Web: www.chinateam.com.hk
Year Established: 2003
Major Product Categories: photo frames (wooden, polyresin), mirrors
Brands & Certificates: -
Minimum Order: 1,000 pieces
Monthly Production Capacity: -
Delivery Time: 60 days
Factory Size & Location: 15,000 square metres; Shenzhen
Workforce: 400
Essential Industries Ltd
Kee Shing Centre
76 Kimberley Rd
Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2314-1820
Fax: 852-2314-2311
Web: www.essential-ind.com
Year Established: 1994
Major Product Categories: photo albums, home and office
stationery, gifts
Brands & Certificates: Eili
Minimum Order: 3,000 pieces
Monthly Production Capacity: -
Delivery Time: 45 days
Factory Size & Location: 90,000 square metres; Dongguan
Workforce: 1,600
Hang Fung Mfy Co Ltd
Rm G, 11/F, Blk 2
Bayview Garden
Ngau Chi Wan, Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2419-6982
Fax: 852-2419-7482
Web: www.hangfunghdc.com
Year Established: 2000
Major Product Categories: photo frames and photo albums
Brands & Certificates: ISO 9001
Minimum Order: US$5,000
Monthly Production Capacity: 500,000-800,000 pieces
Delivery Time: 40-50 days
Factory Size & Location: 180,000 square feet; Shenzhen
Workforce: 600
Kwok Keung Metal Works Ltd
Rms 2903-07, Tower 1
223 Hing Fong Rd
Kwai Chung, New Territories
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2424-4801
Fax: 852-2420-4028
Web: www.kwokkeung.com.hk
Year Established: 1983
Major Product Categories: metal/wood/glass photo frames & photo albums
Brands & Certificates: ISO 9001
Minimum Order: US$8,000, MOQ 480 pieces
Monthly Production Capacity: 1.5 million pieces
Delivery Time: 60 days
Factory Size & Location: 27,000 square metres; Shenzhen
Workforce: -
Sun Ngai Mfy Ltd
Rm 29, 10/F
Thriving Ind Centre
26-38 Sha Tsui Rd
Tsuen Wan, New Territories
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2492-9178
Fax: 852-2416-4938
Web: www.sun-ngai-frame.com
Year Established: 1991
Major Product Categories: wooden photo frames, wooden photo albums, wooden products
Brands & Certificates: -
Minimum Order: 100 cartons
Monthly Production Capacity: 10 FEUs
Delivery Time: 50 days
Factory Size & Location: 10,000 square metres
Workforce: 350