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The TaoBao universe is a wonderful vast land of untold treasures that serves up shopping suggestions the same way Spotify recommends songs that we never knew we loved. Unfortunately, also like Spotify, its A.I is also coded to throw up lists based mostly on past searches, liked items or interactions- which means an even greater majority of unfounded gems exist out there beyond our usually chartered territories.
The solution? Toss up a few new links that would be logged into your TB tracker. We show you these five shops you should definitely take a peek into for value shopping- some of which are not available for direct shipping to SG but can be bypassed via the vPost route, as well as brands you should definitely keep a keen eye on. All this while reshuffling your algorithms to open up new waters for the exploration the next time you log-on.
4 TaoBao Shops You Should Not Miss While Couch Surfing
Fancy a moon mirror at your pride of place? How about a framed Kate Spade scarf showcasing the map of New York? For special wall art, look no further than RINOART, a gallery that curates/creates art and paintings designed to work conversations into living spaces.
To get a deeper understanding of just how niche their works are, consider the Moon Mirror- hand crafted with Volcanic Breccia Rock and fired by a small-kiln which the owner “crossed the desert” to source for. Due to natural firing, every crater on the moon face is different, and the mirrors are only available in small-batch quantities for the grabbing.
While you are at it, take a look at the gallery’s other collections that include an adorable oil-on-canvas painting of little humans swimming in the sea (Cocoa Beach);
And also a framed old silk scarf of the Hermès atelier in 5 Rue Du Faubourg which took 40-hours to restore.
Due to the fragility of art pieces, you can rely on vPost to put extra care in the shipment of your newly prized possession to your home. With vCare package, vPost customers now have the additional guarantee that their packages would be shipped to them in good condition.
Tableware and Ceramics
W1962 has a physical shop in China that buyers can pick and choose from but if you are in SG like us, the next best option is to purchase from them via this TB shop, which offers 15-day returns. Do remember to ship using your VPost forwarding address to ensure that these fragile items will arrive at your doorstep in their best condition.
We love all items beautiful and we love them even more when we land great deals on original designs. Given that the majority of the goods we find in the west are now manufactured in China, one can certainly score originals by knowing where to look.
Shop W1962 is one such dusty shop in the alley that you could find many original gems at a fraction of their original market prices. We are gawping at ultra-low priced pieces by American brands like:
Johnathan Adler Versailles Puzzle vases
Johnathan Adler Dora Maar vase
Pier1 set of 4 pomegranate and fig plates
And not to forget the highly desired utensil and stoneware utensil holders by French brand Le Creuset.
The prices in this shop are a steal compared to what you get out there in the market. For example, a stoneware utensil holder by Le Creuset would normally set you back by about 57 SGD. Here, you pay ¥38 for the stoneware holder which works out to be around $8SGD before shipping and the spatula or oil brush for ¥28.80, which is around $6.50 SGD.
Having said that, do note that not all shops peddle authentic Le Creuset items- so don’t go foraging through other random stores on TaoBao or Lazada and come off with a hundred dollar Le Creuset French Oven (cast iron pots) thinking you landed a touchdown. Tip: Unlike its stoneware series or utensils, Le Creuset’s French Ovens (the signature enamel coated cast iron pots) are fired and manufactured in France, so you shouldn’t be finding them at similarly low prices in TaoBao or Lazada.
Little girls are sugar and spice and everything nice and all parents should dress their princesses as such. Enter Qin Zi’s Branded Apparel Discount Store that carries branded children’s wear from the U.K and Japan, but are manufactured in China.
Think brands like Shirley Temple, Mezzo Piano and Earth Magic- dresses and tees made of high quality fabric, these beautiful designs and pretty prints will set your little girls up ready for a teddy bear tea party, birthday party, or even a romp at the playground.
For appliances you never knew you needed, pop over to TheSuns official web store in TaoBao, where their brilliant designs for ovens, vacuum cleaners, and our favorite: the double-compartment rice cooker will change your perspective on what constitutes awesome kitchen contraptions.
TheSuns is the fourth brand company of Chinese electronics giant Lexy, and its brand story was featured on “The Growing of a Great Brand” by CCTV. Lexy traces its beginnings back to 1994 when its chief designer and executive officer Er Zu Geng first came up with the prototype of the company’s now classic Lexy vacuum cleaner.
TheSuns is Lexy’s creative small kitchen arm brand, and specializes in home appliances targeted at young families starting out in smaller apartments. The brilliance of space usage is reflected in all its designs, especially with the two-compartment rice cooker that is impressing our socks off.
Why? Think of this typical family scenario where the parents are looking to switch over to brown rice for meals, but their children can only subsist on the softer textured white rice.
Ordinarily this would either call for two bulky rice cookers, or result in one of the groups giving up their choice (usually the parents). With TheSuns Compact Double-Compartment Rice Cooker, the family can now serve up both white rice AND brown rice for meals, cooked within a single contraption, taking up less space in the kitchen while also making prepping and cleaning a breeze.
Consider also Scenario Two when it’s late after work and you haven’t had time to prepare dinner. Simply fill up this contraption with rice in the first compartment and a mixture of roughly chopped potato, chicken and some soy sauce in the other.
Set it to cook and step into a warm, relaxing shower. 15 minutes later, voila!
You’re freshly showered and dinner’s ready. All thanks to a rice cooker. The ingenuity of this design is how both compartments seal individually,are set to cook with different funnels for steam- so the flavors will never mix.
Other smart designs featured in TheSuns home appliance series include a double-storeyed oven that takes up more height than it does width, thus saving space on smaller kitchen counters to accommodate perhaps an equally slim Nespresso pixie by its side.
There is also a portable electric lunch warmer with a built-in electronic plate that you can turn on not only to reheat your food with but also to cook at a touch of a button.
It seems like whatever micro household inconvenience the modern-day parent has faced, TheSuns appliance designers have dreamt up and conjured an exact appliance that will smoothen that wrinkle out.
Backed by one of China’s most storied appliance company (Lexy’s production and sales volume of vacuum cleaners has maintained the world’s leading position for 16 years), you can be sure that the technology which goes into the making of these modern-home appliances would be rock solidly dependable.
With China accounting for 28.7% of the global manufacturing output (according to a 2019 census in Statista.com) and TaoBao being the place where most retailers and manufacturers set up their online presence in, the opportunities for steals and great design within the app are endless- if you know where to look.
So click on the links above to spice up your account and home, and don’t forget to use your vPost forwarding address as the default address to enjoy those deals usually available only to China addresses. Be surprised with all else that the shopping giant’s A.I generator will present to you. Happy Shopping!
All promotions featured are accurate at the time of posting. Some online stores may change their promotional T&Cs at their discretion. Please confirm before you checkout your purchases.
Click here to find out more about the vPost shipping rates from China.
IMPORTANT: Click here to find out more about items that vPost does not ship from China to Singapore.
By Jessie Kok