Feb 15 2013

Palladium Wedding celebrations

Celebrating our 15th year working as a design and personalisation company in true entrepreneurial form The Online Gifts Company are delighted to announce our new specialist business.

We make, personalise using hand engraving your wedding ring in the beautiful metal Palladium all of which can be ordered online at Palladiumweddingringstore.com

We hope you enjoy it, live it and wear it just as much as we do.

Feb 8 2013

#2 Secret diary of an engraver…

So we are coming to the end of another busy week and I am continuing on with our current theme of lovely engravings we work on.

My favourite engraving of this week was for a fantastic silver gift item on our Gifts of Distinction web site, the gentleman in question was retiring from what was a long career in a local business and we engraved the most excellent retirement greeting I have come across yet:


Retired !

Goodbye tension, Hello pension !

Yet again, we smiled and according to our facebook page, danced a lot this week.

Have a lovely weekend, David.



Mar 26 2012

Clink, clink fizzzz – your beer is open…

…compliments of our new brand….

Bottle Opener Store

The Truth is out…here..

Yes – we love cool stuff, yes we love a few beers, yes we love great product design and as every designer knows you have to cut your design teeth by making a few bottle openers… this is defacto – factomundo…. and most definitlely true etc and we can prove it with this vast collection of cool, stylish, sleek, multi functional bottle openers.

Choice bottle openers.

We have hand picked some of our own in house bottle opener designs in bottleopenerstore.net plus we have introduced to date thirty more bottle openers on top of our own bottle openers and we are definitely on the hunt for more – loads more in fact. Here is a brief selection of some of the great design led bottle openers we provide -

1: The cool key tool bottle opener

The ultimate in design the Key Tool Bottle Opener

The KeyTool bottle opener from BottleOpenerStore.net

2) Beer Kit Bottle Opener by Jakob Wagner

The Beer Kit Bottle Opener from BottleOpenerStore.net







3) Peter Holmbland Cylinda Bottle Opener

Cylinda Bottle Opener

Cylinda Bottle Opener from BottleOpenerStore.net








So get on down (over!!) to bottle opener store and check out the goods – ‘Your bottle cap will come off’ (Jumps in pool)….




Morrie\’s wigs… the opposite to beer bottle caps..

Jan 11 2012

Entrepreneurship in the creative sector

Well, I am coming up to the end of lecturing at BCU School of Jewellery for this academic year and have been creating a summary of the content for the students to discuss tomorrow and lo and behold when put in order it appears to me to be a useful guide to starting up a new business in the creative sector.

Although I have many projects on the go at the moment including launching a  new brand plus developing my MA project alongside the running of the businesses and oh yeah I am organising an exhibition called “Made in the Jewellery Quarter” for Feb 2012… next month please do come along, anyway, I do think there is the makings of a good start your own business book there so perhaps in the future I will be able to apply myself to this.

Here is the basic content of the course I have developed if you have need of a lecturer or two in any of these areas in the creative sector just give me a call.

Course Overview

Entrepreneurship in the creative sector.

David Hendley (c)

Course Goals

To develop the skills you need to succeed in the current working climate.

To assist with developing an online portfolio.

To assist with developing your vision and create a clear next step when you graduate.

Course Overview

Puropse of a career / business plan

Create a mission statement

Outline of a basic career / business plan

Establish your personal vision

SWOT analysis of your core skills or idea.

Researching & developing your own logo and brand.

Market research -types of, how to & practical.

Freelance employment – rates & marketing

Costing your work professionally

Overheads of a studio

Distribution of your products strategically

Legal structures of a business

Marketing using press releases

Developing your online strategy

Basic web design and architecture

Building an online portfolio

Harnessing social networks


of course I will keep developing the course so get in touch if you wish.

David Hendley.

Check out our other online gift businesses

Gifts of Distinction I Sterling Silver goodies for that very special gift – engraving is available.

Lifestyle giftware for the home – designed by our lead designer David-Louis

A vast array of exceedingly well made hip flasks and all can be engraved for free.

A specialist web site focusing on an exquisite range of tankards for every occasion.











Nov 14 2011

Top 5 Stocking Fillers for Christmas 2011

At some stage during Christmas 2011 I know I will need a stocking filler, a quick, lovely gift that will be appreciated by the recipient & I suspect you will need one too. So here is a list of our top 5 stocking filler gifts, they will be in stock, can be engraved, shipped worldwide & are not too expensive.

Stocking filler gift No. 1.

The David-Louis Bottle Opener, its magnetic and sticks to the fridge, we will engrave it for free and ship it really quickly.

Magnetic bottle opener

The Beer Cube

Stocking filler gift No. 2

Small yet perfectly formed, back pocket, front pocket, breast pocket, polished steel, robust and stylish 3oz hip flask, engravable and great value for money.

Neat highly polished hip flask

The sleek, neat steel hip flask

Stocking Filler Gift No.3

The NEW stack of post-it coasters.

Pre coffee stained coaster post-its, make your desk fun and funky with a stack of paper coasters that double up as post-its..

Post it coasters

Post-it paper coasters

Stocking Filler Gifts No. 4

The Steel Tankard


A stylish stainless steel tankard in a beautifully polished finish.

This tankard holds 16oz, and the high quality stainless steel will retain it’s lovely bright finish over time it is also ideal for engraving, we hold it in stock and can ship it quickly.

Steel tankard polished

Our steel tankard

Stocking Filler Gift No. 5

The Plectrum Rockstar Coaster & Bottle Opener


The Plectrum Coaster & Bottle Opener

The Plectrum Coaster & Bottle Opener

Don’t forget to peruse The David-Louis Group of comapnies.

Gifts of Distinction I Sterling Silver goodies for that very special gift – engraving is available.

Lifestyle giftware for the home – designed by our lead designer David-Louis

A vast array of exceedingly well made hip flasks and all can be engraved for free.

A specialist web site focusing on an exquisite range of tankards for every occasion.

Oct 21 2011

Outdoor & external Commemorative Plaques


Here is a quick snap of a new A3 external plaque, in steel, full colour logos, on wood with four corner screws and caps. Made in 5 working days.

This plaque can be used inside or outside a building and currently resides in Selly Oak, Birmingham.

Feb 13 2011

We give a damn!

about great product design, about our customers and about new design entrepreneurs.

All in all watch this space for Brand Explosion, excellent customer service and all round we give a damn attitude.

We are working creatively, informatively plus, with the customer first and foremost in our mind we are having great results.



What a great time we have been having here at Gifts of Distinction and David-Louis. We have been managing to create growth in our business by raising our game. As our testimonials on the web sites show we have focused on exemplary customer service along side improving dispatch times on all the gift items we sell online.

Mentoring new Designers on TV.

Of late David has been dispensing sound advice to new designers at the School of Jewellery for the students on the Design for Industry course as well as giving a few talks on marketing and writing the perfect press release for new creative entrepreneurs at Design Space. This work was recognised recently and David-Louis has recently featured on ITV news as a mentor, over the coming months ITV will be revisiting David and talking with some of his mentees so keep an eye on our blog for links to the interviews.

Spring Fair 2011

Under the flaskstore and tankardstore banner we recently visited the Spring Fair 2011 and picked up many new suppliers and pressed the flesh with existing customers and suppliers, I was delighted when Alice made time to visit the existing suppliers I couldn’t find, I personally did four halls in four hours, met 20 people and swapped details with 10 new people. So quick and to the point visit this year, we are really lucky the NEC is beside us here in Birmingham.

Pulse 2011

Talking about trade fairs David-Louis.com is exhibiting at Pulse in June 2011 so we will be developing our brand, raising our profile and introducing new products over the next four months in preparation for the event.

New designers and new ideas

David-Louis also hope to work with Simon Pattison the new designer on the scene here in Birmingham and will be commissioning him to produce CAD drawings and turn our concepts into reality, we can see Simon is going somewhere in the design word but before he fly’s the coop and becomes a household name we will be supporting him here in Birmingham.

Finally David-Louis will be engaging a PR Company to focus on driving sales of the David-Louis Beer Cube, we are currently negotiating with Zombie Kitty and are excited about their ideas.

All in all watch this space for Brand Explosion, excellent customer service and all round we give a damn attitude. We are working creatively, informatively and with the customer first and foremost in our mind with great results.

Sep 3 2009

A short guide to Organisations impacting on the Jewellery Quarter

This information was supplied by Andy Munroe of the Jewellery Quarter Regeration Partnership


This is not an exhaustive list but set out below are the main organisations which have influence or input into either marketing the area or business support: -


Advantage West Midlands

They are funded through central government and have a region wide brief with business support divided into ‘clusters’ including ‘interior and lifestyles’. Funding is provided to support projects which are usually subcontracted in the case of the jewellery industry to the Ceramics Forum and Birmingham City University. Contact is Mike Barton Cluster Manager on 0121 503 3360.


Assay Office

Charged with the responsibility of assaying precious metals, they also provide a number of other services such as ‘Anchor-cert’. They also have a marketing department. Assay master is Michael Allchin on 0121 236 6951.


Birmingham City Council Business Support Team

This team are responsible for the Design Space incubation scheme, the proposed Retail Support Initiative and the Business Space Initiative (the latter two due to be introduced in the early Autumn). Contact is Carol Alderson on 0121 303 4366.


Birmingham City Council Leisure, Sports and Culture

The brief includes attracting more people to Birmingham City Council Museums and the cultural offer including ArtsFest and Brilliantly Birmingham. They have a limited budget to support these initiatives. Contact for Brilliantly Birmingham is Sophia Tarr on 0121 464 9675 and for ArtsFest, Emily Bartlett on 0121 303 8489.


British Jewellers Association

This is a nationwide trade association but who have some local membership and support their members on a whole range of trade related issues. Contact is Geoff Field on 0121 236 2657.


Jewellery and Industry Innovation Centre (JIIC)

The JIIC are part of Birmingham City University, which includes Birmingham School of Jewellery, and their brief is to provide a range of services including new product development to the jewellery trade both locally and regionally. Contact is Gay Penfold on 0121 248 4578.


Jewellery Quarter Association

This is a lobbying organisation who also run bi-monthly networking breakfasts. Contact Dave Mahony (JQA Chair) on 0121 236 7070.


Jewellery Quarter Marketing Initiative

Made up of mainly retailers, restaurants and bars who pay a subscription to market and raise the profile of the Jewellery Quarter. This ranges from working with travel operators and the media to involvement in events. Contact Anna Gibson, Jewellery Quarter Marketing Initiative Manager on 0121 464 1191.


Jewellery Quarter Regeneration Partnership

Funded by Birmingham City Council the JQRP Team have a wide regeneration brief of which marketing is just one aspect. They also manage the Jewellery Quarter Information Centre. Contact Andy Munro (Operations Director) on 0121 464 1186.


Marketing Birmingham

Their brief is to market Birmingham but with the prime objective of attracting overnight visitors to bolster the economy. They are funded by Birmingham City Council, Advantage West Midlands and some private sector contributions with the aim of marketing the generic Birmingham offer.

Mar 2 2009

David-Louis Mothers Day on the way.

Well we are getting ready for mothers day here at Gifts-of-Distinction/ David-Louis.

Don’t forget mothers day is on March 22nd in 2009 and this Ladies Sterling Silver Business Card Holder is totally ideal for a sophisticated mother on Mothers Day.

Each one is hand made to order so get in touch as soon as you can.

This elegant business card holder comes with a beautifully formed bow detail for that feminine touch. This pretty little piece will fit neatly into any woman’s handbag,and is also ideal for credit cards.

Each business card case is handmade to order in Birmingham’s prestigious Jewellery Quarter.

The Sterling Silver card cases all bear the Birmingham Assay Office hallmark, and are each packaged in a presentation box with lift off lid.

Available from our online gifts site for £69.95 plus VAT.

Feb 27 2009

David-Louis – Distinctive foodie themes.

Yes, so here we are on a Friday afternoon, working hard on our new range of silver objet for Gifts of Distinction, last week our Silver Chip Fork went down very well and this week we keeping up with our ‘foodie’ theme.

Our Gifts of Distinction policy is all about luxury and indulgence. Treating yourself or a loved one to a gift that is and will be cherished.

With this in mind we are launching our Sterling Silver Mussel Eater

This exquisite solid Sterling Silver Mussel Eater is handmade to order in Birmingham’s prestigious Jewellery Quarter.

Each Sterling Silver mollusc bears the Birmingham Assay Office Hallmark.

Two pieces of oxidised or blackened Sterling Silver are held together with a delicate sprung hinge, so you can pick up your Moules Mariniere with the perfect pair of pincers.

Each Sterling Silver Mussel Eater is packaged in it’s own lift off lid presentation box, making it an ideal present for those with a passion for fine dining.

We do hope you like it. Please feel free to comment on our blog or products at any time.

Available for £64.95 plus vat at Gifts of Distinction mussel eater section.