If you’re looking for the perfect holiday gift for your favorite Tolkien fan, you’ve come to the right place! The staff of TheOneRing.net have put together a list of our favorite items of the year, with price points for every budget. And while it’s nice to know that 2-day shipping exists (thanks, Amazon!), shipping delays around the holidays are inevitable, so we recommend starting your gift shopping now. Not to mention that the perfect item you’ve been looking for could sell out!
From our Fellowship to yours, TheOneRing.net would like to wish you all a peaceful and happy holiday season.
Mini Epics: Witch-King of the Unseen Lands Limited Edition by Weta Workshop: $44.99
I’ve been a fan of Weta Workshop’s Mini Epics line since they started releasing them, but this might be my favorite one so far. The attention to detail on these little guys is so…epic! And like all Weta collectibles, they were designed by the same artists that worked on the films. “Peeking through the mortal veil, we glimpsed the mighty Witch-king’s true visage, immortalized now for all to fear in Mini Epic form.”
Not only is this Witch-King fear-inducing , he’s also kind of cute! Click HERE to pre-order.
Realm of Middle-earth Moonlit Throw by Oscha: £96.00
It’s no secret that I’ve always been a huge fan of Scottish company Oscha’s Middle-earth range. Their designs are so beautiful; you can choose a throw, shawl, mug, or bag, if you’re not in the market for a baby sling or baby blanket. (Though I have to say, the baby blankets make great wall hangings!) This year I’m highlighting their ‘Realm of Middle-earth’ pattern, on the ‘moonlit’ colour scheme throw. Who doesn’t like a good map from Tolkien’s world? This would look beautiful on any sofa or bed. Do yourself a favour and check out Oscha’s entire collection; you’ll be glad you did! Click HERE to order.
Hobbit Mini Gandalf Hat by Stansborough: $79
It’s great to know that small, family run businesses creating sustainable and ethical products (such as Oscha, above) can thrive; and as one of the best, I’m thrilled that Stansborough in New Zealand are still going strong. They are the folks who made the magical Elven cloaks for The Lord of the Rings movies, as well as Gandalf’s scarf in The Hobbit movies, and further fabrics for The Rings of Power! Once again, they have fabulous scarfs, throws, caps, etc. – and even Gandalf’s hat! My choice for the gift list is the mini Gandalf hat; I already said this in another homepage post, but I think it would be an adorable tree topper. Own a little piece of genuine New Zealand goodness; check out Stansborough’s website. Their treasures aren’t cheap – but the standard is so high, they’re worth every penny! Click HERE to order.
Collectibles from NZ Post: prices vary
NZ Post continue their celebration of Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy with 20th anniversary collectibles for The Two Towers. Their products are beautiful, and would be treasured by any collector. I particularly love the Limited Edition stamp presentation pack, and this stunning art print. The new range of pins would be wonderful stocking stuffers! There are three, all great designs and very attractive presentation; again, very collectible. Choose from Eye of Sauron, Gollum, or Mount Doom.
The Fall of Númenor: And Other Tales from the Second Age of Middle-earth by J.R.R Tolkien and edited by Brian Sibley: $34.99
My ‘must have’ this year is “The Fall of Numenor” edited by Brian Sibley, who expertly weaves together all the Second Age story strands into one, cohesive timeline custom-made for the fans of Tolkien who want to dig deeper into the lore, but without having to scour numerous other volumes. Add to this the glorious new watercolor and pencil drawings from Alan Lee, and this book becomes the perfect Holiday gift for new and existing Tolkien fans. Click HERE to order.
The Lord of the Rings Jewelry Collection by Enso Rings: starting at $44.99
Enso has a collection of silicone rings inspired by The Lord of the Rings. The Shire Leaf ring is perfect for anyone who dreams of the simple life. This ring celebrates the idyllic, peaceful home of the Hobbits with a leaf etching on Distressed Ashy Green and Black Pearl. Click HERE to see other designs and to order.
The Silmarillion (Illustrated Edition): Illustrated by J.R.R. Tolkien: $39.00
For the first time ever, a very special edition of the forerunner to The Lord of the Rings, illustrated throughout in color by J.R.R. Tolkien himself and with the complete text printed in two colors. The Silmarillion fills in the background which lies behind the more popular work, and gives the earlier history of Middle-earth, introducing some of the key characters. Click HERE to order.
The Lord of The Rings: The Fellowship of The Ring 2000 Piece Jigsaw Puzzle by Ravensburger: $44.99
Join the Fellowship in their quest through Middle Earth to rid the world of Sauron’s One Ring. Pursued by Ringwraiths, the Hobbits Frodo, Samwise, Merry and Pippin are aided by the Wizard Gandalf, the Ranger Aragorn, Legolas the elf, Gimli the dwarf and Boromir. The Watcher nearly prevents their perilous trek through the Mines of Moria, where Gandalf confronts a Balrog on the Bridge of Khazad-dûm. Galadriel provides comfort, but Saruman’s Uruk-hai pursue. Will the Fellowship make it to Mordor? An immersive illustrated map of Middle Earth, this “The Fellowship of the Ring” puzzle is a Ravensburger exclusive, perfect for any Lord of the Rings fan! Click HERE to order the FotR puzzle, or HERE for their ‘Two Towers’ puzzle.
Wee Tanya recommends:
The Lord of the Rings Apparel and Accessories line by Her Universe: prices vary
I am a huge fan of costuming, but can’t always put on a full elf outfit at work. The brand Her Universe currently has a range of all-gender Lord of the Rings apparel, including cloaks, hoodies, leggings, t-shirts, and a fantastic blouse with Fellowship broach embroidery on the collar that can keep us Tolkiening along in a more subtle way. If you can’t find an specific item that you want, the Her Universe LOTR line is also sold at Hot Topic. Some of my favorite items include the Middle-earth map button-down in men’s sizes, the dress that is suitable for a Ren Faire or Hobbit dance party, and the Loungefly bag. Click HERE to order.
Actor Bruce Hopkins, who played Gamling in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy (and is a good friend to TORn), is 67 years young. To celebrate his recent birthday, he raised money for charity by doing something unusual: back flipping off a wharf, once for every year of his age.
Middle-earth fans will be aware of Hopkins’ drive and energy; back in 2017, he walked the 3000km Te Araroa trail, taking the ashes of his father and brother the length of New Zealand and back to their ancestral home, Stewart Island. That time, as with this latest endeavour, he was raising money for charity Grandparents Raising Grandchildren.
As a grandfather himself, Hopkins is an ardent supporter of the charity. He’s also a keen swimmer who has spent much of his life in the water – but never before had he endeavoured to do quite so many back flips. To challenge himself even further, one in every ten of the flips was taken from 4m (c. 12 foot) above the water!
The men of Rohan are hardy stock, and our Gamling came through unscathed – apart from some bruising to his shins. Happy birthday Bruce, and congratulations on raising funds for such a worthy cause.
Stansborough is a name which will be familiar to many fans of Peter Jackson’s Middle-earth. Their amazing wool made those magical Elven cloaks, gifted to the Fellowship in the first Lord of the Rings movie. Spun through with silver thread, the Stansborough weave appeared again as Gandalf’s scarf in The Hobbit trilogy; and their fabrics have even been used recently in The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power!
Tolkien lovers who have made pilgrimages to New Zealand may have visited their mill, to see their sustainable fabrics being created; and many of us have purchased items from them over the years. We’re delighted that this family run business is still going, still making magic – and they have generously sent us some goodies to giveaway!
Staffers Madeye Gamgee and greendragon had the pleasure of opening the exciting package which travelled across the ocean to arrive in the US; take a look to see what was in the box:
Your chance to win
If YOU would like to be in with a chance to be one of the lucky winners who will receive one of the goodies from Stansborough, all you need to do is complete and submit this form. The contest is open within the USA only (sorry, folks elsewhere in the world!); you have until 11.59pm PT Monday 28th November to enter. On Tuesday 29th we’ll pick three winners at random, and send each one of those lucky folks one of the three items.
If you’re not in the US, or if you aren’t a winner, you can still treat yourself to something wonderful from Stansborough; just visit their website to see all the goodies available. I’ve got my eye on one of their mini Gandalf hats (as seen above) – the perfect tree topper…! (Hmm, perhaps for a tree decorated with flaming pine cones…?)
Big thanks to our good friends at Stansborough for their generosity.
Studio initiative helps the massive production – the biggest budget in TV history – find ways to recycle production-used materials.
A new report from The Guardian on the industry-wide issue of waste uses Amazon’s Rings of Power to comment on sustainability practices. Acknowledging that every Hollywood production has huge waste and debris problems, it’s the epic scale of Lord of the Rings that draws attention since it is the biggest TV production.
According to leaked production memos, “The environmental impact of this industry, and of this show, is enormous… every single person we spoke to is concerned about the environmental impact”. The Rings of Power crew overall cared about the environment – just as fans of JRR Tolkien have for over 80 years, where LOTR and Hobbit include environmental-conscious messaging as part of the core story of Middle-earth.
Fans were elated when Amazon announced Rings of Power would shoot in New Zealand. Not only has the country adopted LOTR as its homeland mythology for tourism, many production people incorporate Tolkien’s environmental concern into their daily life for sustainable island living.
Sounds like Season 2 of Rings of Power will have sustainability considered from the start. ““As we figure out what’s going on, we can identify the issues and figure out how things might be done differently moving forward. Next season, we can do things right from the outset,” says an internal memo attained by The Guardian.
The article goes on to say that New Zealand film rebate programs should also tie into sustainable production practices, to get the tax rebates. Amazon had negotiated the largest tax break in NZ country history, but let it forgo when they abruptly moved production for Season 2 to the U.K. Many of the NZ sets were destroyed and trashed due to the corporate-mandated move.
Peter Jackson also shot much of The Hobbit on soundstages using polystyrene trees and forest, using high frame rate 3D cameras and digital sizing between elves and dwarves. Fans didn’t like the “soap opera” look of those films, but the environments were celebrated as much as Rings of Power’s return to Middle-earth.
After a successful Cruise to Middle-earth in November of 2008, and a sequel cruise in December 2012, it is time to complete the Trilogy. This Journey to Middle earth starts on January 2, 2023, in Sydney, Australia as you board the Celebrity Eclipse, and runs 12 nights long, ending in Auckland, New Zealand on January 14, 2023. This is not a LOTR convention at Sea, but more of a Mobile Middle-earth Moot where we get to see the real-world Middle-earth while enjoying the benefits of a luxurious cruise ship.
This 12-night cruise will take you to such filming locations as Hobbiton and Edoras, with the option to visit the WETA Workshop in Wellington on a private tour. Other ports visited will be Melbourne, Dunedin, and the Bay of Islands. And for those choosing to arrive in Sydney a few days early, you will be able to celebrate the New Year’s Celebration near the Sydney Opera House and the Harbor Bridge for fireworks (not included, but I can assist in securing a hotel and flights).
Once the cruise is finished, there will be an optional 2-night post-cruise stay in Auckland so that we can experience WETA Unleashed, and have a farewell dinner in the restaurant at the top of the Sky Tower in Auckland, and have a private tour and dinner in Hobbiton. This allows folks to choose a Cultural or Geological tour option in the port of Tauranga (Rotorua) rather than Hobbiton from the ship, which will be rather short and bunched together with other cruise passengers that might not be as geeky as those in our group. If you choose this post-cruise tour, there will be an additional cost, and you will need to remain in New Zealand at least until January 16, 2023.
If you choose to arrive on the morning of the cruise, you will have to depart North America on December 31, 2022, to arrive by January 2, 2023, or you can depart earlier and spend a couple of days in Sydney. If you wish to be in Sydney for the actual New Year’s celebration, you will want to depart North America no later than December 29 for a December 31 arrival. For those interested parties in Europe or Down Under, the time difference will affect you differently.
I am arranging an exclusive day tour to visit with WETA in Wellington for us when the ship is in port, which will include a private workshop. There will be a motorcoach to pick us up just outside the port area in the morning and take us over to Miramar to tour the facility, taking in not just LOTR projects, but some of the many other film projects WETA has worked on over the years. This will be topped off with a hands-on workshop on crafting leather and chain maille armor before the motorcoach will take us back to the city center for a self-guided tour inside the Te Papa Museum. You will not want to miss Te Papa, besides it being a world-class museum, there is a Gallipoli exhibit created by WETA that must be seen to believe, and the museum is free. We will then make our own way back to the ship before it departs. This tour can be purchased as a customized package not included in the cruise fare. A quote will be available shortly.
On the ship, there will be a few days at sea, with no port stops, so I’ll be planning a few group activities that you can choose to join or not, depending on whether you would prefer to go to the spa or partake in other Ship Hosted activities. There will be a Tolkien Toast on January 3, 2023, to commemorate the Professor’s birthday, and then there will be a few games and group discussions, and maybe singing along to some of Tolkien’s songs found in the books. And this cruise takes place just a couple of months after the Rings of Power airs, so lots to discuss and maybe an additional location or two to be seen. For those of you with Middle-earth costumes, feel free to bring them, especially if they are on the lighter side, for packing purposes. There will be a Costumed Cocktail reception, and for those without costumes, a geeky t-shirt will suffice. The bonus is that you can also wear the costume either in Edoras or Hobbiton or bring two costumes and do both.
The nitty-gritty information for this group is that it has been on sale for several months, so some room types are no longer available. The Cruise pricing fluctuates regularly, based on available discounts for persons who qualify (past passenger, Senior or military rate, etc.) and just what rooms are still open for booking. An interior room right now is starting at $2179 per person, a Balcony room starts at $2429 per person and a Concierge Balcony (more perks) starts at $2869 per person. The private tour to WETA during the ship’s port stop in Wellington will have its own price, to be finalized very soon, and the customized 2-night post-cruise tour in Auckland to Hobbiton and other activities is currently priced at $1170 per person, but that will go down with a few more people booked into the group. There is a small planning fee of $50 per person if booked by May 31, and then it goes up to $100 per person on June 1.
To make an inquiry, please contact me at Garfeimao@TheOneRing.net
The program provides books to New Zealand children in areas where books can not be taken for granted as part of the normal furniture of life. It aims to break the cycle of booklessness amongst children at low decile schools throughout New Zealand.
Duffy Books in Homes coordinator Jacqui Whyte writes to tell us that the program’s schools — including Runanga, the school that TORn sponsors — recently received their latest orders of books.
As part of the program, Duffy role models also typically visit different schools to foster a love of reading and tell kids that reading is a cool thing to do.
Due to Covid-19, the usual visits by our Role Models to celebrate the books arriving at school assemblies were not able to take place; however, we were able to provide inspirational messages about the importance of literacy via video instead.
These have become a great resource for our teachers as they can share them anytime and with individual students and/or in class groups. We now have a fantastic and varied collection available on our website.
I wanted to share with you the video Runanga School received from Role Model and ultra-marathon swimmer Liana Smith.
Since 1995, the Duffy program has grown to encompass more than 520 schools and 280 early childhood centres In 2018, with the backing of over 200 funding partners, supporters and donors in 2018, it was able to distribute books to more than 100,000 students.
As well as their website, Duffy Books in Homes is very active on both Facebook and Instagram. Go check out all the great literacy work they do!