Korean Gift Ideas: Korean Traditional Mini Jewelry Boxes (나전 송학 미니쌍합보석함)


Hello. Recently I was looking for a gift to send a friend in the states for an early Holiday present. 
Since this person was female, I had issues with finding a present since there seem to be so many choices. There are a lot of fancy or cute stuff being sold here in Korea that sometimes it is too much. 

I think it is the opposite for males. There are a far few things that I could broadly pick up for male friends if I did not look for things specific to their hobbies or likings.  I any case, I was looking around Insa-dong where there are a ton of tourist around all week long, I found something that fell into my not cheap but not too serious money range I was aiming for. Unlike Koreans who tend to give gifts to show off and rather make the recipient slightly uncomfortable, Americans tend to not go for that.

 Aren't Americans Weird?

Just a joke. I do not like gifts with strings attached also. 


I decided to get my friend a Korean Traditional Mini Wood Jewelry Box made. It is a wooden black box treated with a Lacquer technique and decorated using inlaid sea shells. While there are many designs, I decided on a common crane pattern in Korean transitional art. These crane and Flora on the box is made using sea shells. Thus, the more elaborate design requires more shells and labor. It is also more expensive. I got this one for around $40 on sale. The box below cost around $85.

I personally like the less elaborate designs myself. Size wise, the box I got is horizontally 14.5cm, vertically 7.2cm and has a height of  7.2cm. It weighs a little over a pound. 



Rotating the Box


A feature of this design is that it opens in half to reveal 4 compartments for Jewelry and stuff. 



Opening the Box



Opening the 4 compartments

I packaged and ship this box to the U.S. using small package air mail for about $10 which will take about 2 weeks to reach its destination somewhere is the USA.







Thus, this gift cost me around $50 in total which is not a bad amount for what you get. One thing I noticed when coming back is that, except for some price direct/indirect controlled products, things are expensive in Korea. This is true for the stuff that tends to be cute or touristy. 

Here are some other designs.


Product cost:$30 on sale

Product cost:: $45 on sale

Product cost: $52 each on sale

Product cost $45 on sale

Product cost $30 on sale
Product cost $30 on sale
Product cost $31 on sale
Product cost $45 on sale
Product cost $45 on sale


Product cost $50 on sale


Product cost $50 on sale
Product cost $85 on sale
Product cost $105 on sale
Product cost $105 on sale

If anyone interesting in getting one of these boxes, I can help too. 
Email: akoreaninamerica@outlook.com

2 comments:

  1. I need these in my life. Wait, correction. I want these in my life. I don't actually need them.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Insadong is a great place to get gifts. The lacquer boxes are beautiful. There's also fans, paper, jewelry, lots of things you can get for people of any gender :)

    ReplyDelete