Quirky Chinese New Year ang baos in Singapore


Unique red packets Singapore Chinese New Year 2020Image adapted from (clockwise from top-left): The Woof AgencyIndependent Market, @beelove4craftsThe Farm Store

You know what they say: It’s what’s on the inside that counts. And this holds true for Chinese New Year ang baos. But that doesn’t mean that the packaging should be neglected. If you want to be remembered this CNY as more than just the “random auntie/uncle who gives money every year”, take things up a notch with a fun and modern red packet.

It’s a win-win: The recipient will be pleasantly surprised, and you’ll immediately gain extra points with your relatives. They might even forgive you if you put just $4 inside. (But please, don’t do that.)

Here’s where you can get unique ang baos in Singapore with 3D, rat-themed, and bak kwa designs:


1. Watercolour-style with mouse-related puns


Mouse-themed red packet Kow Fong
Image credit: Delighting Ideas

Easy on the eye with their colourful, light-toned illustrations, the mouse-themed money packets by local illustrator Kow Fong are certainly a less garish alternative to the usual red-and-gold ones. We love how the watercolour-style design evokes a sense of nostalgia, but holds modern whimsy at the same time.

See if you’re sharp enough to spot the 鼠 (mouse) puns incorporated into the scene!

Mouse-themed red packet Kow FongThere are also tote bags, drawstring bags, and cushion covers with the same design.
Image credit: 
@kowfong

Price: $6.90 for 10 pieces
Get it via Delighting IdeasIndependent Market, or Grassroots Book Room.


2. Red bao-shaped hong bao


The Farm Store red packet
Image credit: The Farm Store

If you missed the subtle pun, this unorthodox round red packet from The Farm Store is a literal hong bao – i.e., a red bun. Except, instead of tau sar or char siew, this one unfurls to reveal something even better: Money. *ka-ching*

The Farm Store red packet
Image credit: The Farm Store

A set of 2 costs $9, while 3 sets (total 6 pieces) will cost you $18.90. Not exactly the cheapest, but they’ll sure bring the receiver a sense of novelty. Besides, these are all painstakingly folded by the inmates of Changi’s Women’s Prison, so you’ll be indirectly contributing to giving them a second chance when you purchase this.

The Farm Store red packet
Image credit: The Farm Store

Price: $9 for 2 pieces, $18.90 for 3 sets (6 pieces)
Get it here.


3. “This is less than 1% of your COE”


angbaos 2020
Image credit: Naiise

This one’s for your rich cousin who technically doesn’t even need your ang bao, seeing as they can afford a whole car. After all, the amount you’re giving them is only less than 1% of their exorbitant COE, amirite?

These cheeky red packets by rudepacket take a lighthearted dig at them with the text “Congratulations, this is less than 1% of your COE” emblazoned across. It’s interesting to note that they’re wide enough to fit a $1,000 bill – not that most of us would readily part with such an amount.

They’re currently going at a discounted price of $8.40 (U.P. $12) for a set of 5.

Price: $8.40 for 5 pieces
Get it here via Naiise.


4. Dog charity ang baos


Hope for Animals


Hope for Animals red packet
Image credit: @barkatree

Giving gets even sweeter this Lunar New Year if you get your red packets from Hope for Animals, because 50% of the proceeds are going to selected local dog shelters. There are a whopping 20 designs to choose from, ranging from cute and cartoon-like to more elaborate ones that look like they’ve been painted on.

Each variant features a different dog breed – including Papillon, Corgi, and Pomeranian – as well as well-wishes in Chinese.

Hope for Animals red packetBeagle and Pug
Image adapted from: 
Hope for Animals

They’re super affordable too, with each set of 5 going at just $4.

Price: $4 for 5 pieces
View all their designs and place your order here.


The Woof Agency


The Woof Agency dog red packet
The Woof Agency x The Right To Live
Image credit: The Woof Agency

The Woof Agency also has their own share of adorable dog charity ang baos. You can either get the ones that go towards helping dog shelter The Right To Live ($8 for 6), or donate to any other animal welfare group ($12 for 12) of your choice that’s not limited to canines – this includes cats and rodents too!

The Woof Agency dog red packet
Image credit: The Woof Agency

100% of the sales profits will be channelled to those pet shelters. Consider your good karma for the new year all set.

Price: $8 for 6 pieces (The Right To Live), $12 for 12 pieces (other animal charities)

Get it here.


5. Bak kwa and pineapple tart designs


Independent Market CNY snack themed red packets
Image credit: Independent Market

Everyone knows that one person who’s always hungry, and these Chinese New Year snack-themed red packets from Independent Market are perfect for them. Featuring must-have tidbits like love letters, prawn rolls, and bak kwa, these quirky pieces are sure to be a  fun conversation starter.

Independent Market CNY snack themed red packets
Image credit: Independent Market

The underside of each packet includes a tongue-in-cheek description of its corresponding food item, with its name in Chinese. This particular Mandarin orange one reads: “It is never alone. (Otherwise it will be unlucky. Choy ah!)” – explaining why oranges are always given in pairs.

Independent Market CNY snack themed red packetsImage credit: Independent Market

Price: $5 for 8 pieces
Get it here.


6.  One-of-a-kind handcrafted 3D ang baos


3D red packet beelove4crafts
Image credit: @beelove4crafts

Instagram crafter @beelove4crafts gives red packets new life by pasting stickers, decals, and even 3D food figurines on them to transform them into something that’s 100% unique. There are tons of designs displayed on her page, and everything is one-of-a-kind, with no remakes.

3D red packet beelove4crafts
Image credit: @beelove4crafts

Many of her creations have local elements to them, such as the iconic Toa Payoh dragon playground and childhood snacks like White Rabbit sweets and Haw Flakes. This year, she has specially created some mouse-themed ones to celebrate the year of the rat.

3D red packet beelove4craftsImage credit: @beelove4crafts

Starting from $8 per piece including postage, these are on the pricey side, but know that they’re all painstakingly handmade with love and you won’t find any similar replicas in the market.

Price: From $8 per piece
Drop her a direct message on Instagram for price quotes and orders.


7. Kebaya print with gold foil


The Paper Bunny kebaya red packet
Image credit: 
The Paper Bunny

Local stationery store The Paper Bunny keeps it classy and elegant with a blue kebaya-print money packet this year. The iconic floral design we’ve come to associate SIA stewardesses with is embellished with red accents as well as gold foil.

The Paper Bunny kebaya red packet
Image credit: The Paper Bunny

Printed on the front in gold lettering is the quote, “health, harmony & overflowing goodness” – suitable for that younger jiak kentang relative of yours who may not be able to decipher CNY well-wishes written in Chinese.

Price: $5 for 8 pieces
Get it here.


8. Tokidoki ang bao


Tokidoki red packet Shihlin Snacks
Image credit: @airmailpanda

There’s a perfect excuse to binge on Shihlin Taiwan Street Snacks’ XXL Crispy Chicken and Oyster Mee Sua this month – and that’s their uber kawaii Tokidoki red packets. These are limited edition, and in true Simone Legno fashion, come printed full of characters like Donutella, Unicorno, and Mermicorno with an oriental twist.

Tokidoki red packet Shihlin SnacksImage credit: @airmailpanda

Simply spend a minimum of $12 at their kiosks from now till 24th January and you’ll be able to receive a packet of them for free (worth $8)!

Price: Free when you spend min. $12 at Shihlin Taiwan Street Snacks (worth $8)
Find an outlet near you here.


9. With real 24k gold rat-themed gold bars


Kin Jewellery gold bar red packet
Image credit: @kinjewellery

Honestly, you don’t even have to include any cash in this ang bao by Kin Jewellery, since it comes with a real 24k gold foil bar incorporated into the design. Embossed with a rat design and well-wishes, the gold disc is detachable for the recipient to safekeep.

Kin Jewellery gold bar red packetImage adapted from: Kin Jewellery

There’s a dragon and phoenix version, as well as another mouse-themed one that comes with a good luck charm that’s made of – you guessed it – 24k gold. Now how’s that for lavish.

Price: From $28. Check out the full range of designs and their prices here.

Address: Blk 478 Tampines Street 44, #01-223, Singapore 520478
Opening hours: Tue – Sun 10.30AM-6PM (Closed on Mondays)
Telephone: 9824 1108
Website


10. Shiba inu-themed


Etgoeshibaeee shiba inu dog red packet
Image credit: @etgoshibaeee

Shiba inu lovers will delight in Etgoeshibaeee – an Etsy store by a local hobbyist illustrator who produces all sorts of shiba-themed knick-knacks from earrings to pouches and enamel pins. Her designs revolve around 3 doggos, each with their own unique expressions and personality traits.

This year, the shibas have donned qi paos and chang shans to appear on a set of yellow money packets, costing just $3 for 10 or $5 for 20. That’s as low as $0.25 per piece!

Price: $3 for 10 pieces, $5 for 2 packets (20 pieces)

Drop them a direct message on Instagram to order.
Website


Unique red packets for Chinese New Year 2020


No one enjoys parting with their money, but giving out red packets during Lunar New Year is part and parcel of Chinese tradition and symbolises good luck. If you’ve already joined the ang bao-giving club, might as well go all out and use a quirky packet that the receiver would want to keep or even re-use for future occasions.