Winter is a great time to…

Support local

Trade at some of our retail outlets can be slow in winter – and the reality is that if we don’t use them, we risk losing them. So ditch online shopping and get on out there! Have a browse, buy a present or something for yourself at the great little spots for shopping in Wairarapa.

A favourite in Greytown is Tapestry’s retro, vintage and industrial items for the home, not to mention the beautiful clothing. Near Tapestry, in The Hub, is Merino Kids stocking its popular 100 per cent superfine merino children and baby clothes and sleepwear. On the Main Road in Greytown, tucked behind the iconic French Baker is Scented, where a gorgeous range of cruelty-free bath, body and home products is available.

Still in Greytown, further south, is clothing designer Hall, with a stunning range of locally designed and New Zealand made contemporary, casual clothing. Hall also stock a gorgeous range of other labels and accessories that compliment the Hall range. Don’t forget to check out The Lolly Jar for the ultimate pick and mix and Blackwell and Sons, for beautifully made Pashley bicycles and accessories in the store.

In Martinborough, the P&K General Store has a great range of clothing brands (including the recently added Huffer) accessories for men, women and children and a large range of stationery, toys and children’s books.


Sort your finances and legal matters

Financial matters can be a headache – and it’s all too easy to be overwhelmed during the at-times depressing winter months. In that case, use the dreary weather to get the finances straightened out before summer.

Check out a financial adviser, such as Loan Market, if you need some help with reviewing your loan, mortgage, or insurance plan. Experienced brokers Rachel James and Matt Spicer can also help out with lending for future plans – such as a new home loan, personal loan (for that much-needed summer getaway) or business grant. Don’t wait until it gets warmer to put those big ambitions into action.

Alternatively, if you’re needing advice on making the household budget go further, check in with the free budget services at Connecting Communities Wairarapa for money-saving tips and tricks.

For matters of law, WCM Legal have offices in Carterton and Greytown and can help you with estates and wills, conveyancing, powers of attorney and a whole lot more.


Have a party!

There are typically fewer parties in winter, but it’s a wonderful time to get together to celebrate Matariki, solstice, a mid-winter Christmas or a special birthday. Any reason in fact. If you don’t have space inside, hire a marquee and other outside party equipment from Festival Hire. Don’t forget outdoor heating, which you can hire from Festival Hire along with extra plates, cutlery and lighting… just add people, food and drink!

Speaking of food, why not try a professional chef service? Ant North caters for all types of events from dinner parties and weddings, to team building events and business meetings.

Winter weddings are now a popular alternative to the traditional summer wedding and there’s lots of quality accommodation and venue options throughout Wairarapa. A couple of our faves are Rose & Smith at Tauherenikau and Lacewood near Pirinoa.

Wairarapa also has fantastic beauty therapy options for your special day. So, if you’re planning a winter wedding, book your bridal party into Alluminus Beauty Therapy. Even if you’re not doing the wedding thing, there’s a full range of beauty treatments and therapies for a bit of winter maintenance or a treat. Try a lash extension, facial, body treatment, pedicure or manicure, or pop in and stock up on their extensive range of skin and body care products.



The colder months are a great time to focus on the inside spaces of your home – where it’s (usually) toasty warm! The whole nine yards in Kuripuni, as its name suggests, is a one stop shop for your interior decorating needs. Whether you’re completely redesigning your living room, a new paint job in the kitchen, or replacing those drapes and throw rugs from the 70s, consultants Sophie and Julie have you covered.

If you’re after some new furniture, The Design Library in Greytown has an amazing range, from barstools to light fittings. Or, get an old favourite recovered at Graham & Sons Upholstery – or learn the tricks of the trade at one of their monthly upholstery classes.


Renovate or plan a new build

Need more space, or finding your current digs aren’t quite what you need or like? Winter is a great time to start planning building projects. Jennian Homes have a range of plans that can be custom designed for your family. And, if you’re after the whole ‘shebang’, Jennian has house and land packages available too. If you’ve got a heritage home and looking to renovate – Callidus Architecture specialise in character renovation and bridging the gap between heritage homes and modern convenience.

Sandpit Architectural Design can make your dream home a reality, with the help of some skillful draughting and 3D rendering, as well as assisting with the sometimes tricky building consent process.

For those wistful for warmer weather, get in touch with the experts at Pool Projects or NZ Pools to help you plan and make your dream pool a reality for next summer.



We can rely on exercise to bring on the endorphins – and, in winter, we need all the endorphins we can get. Stretch out those achy limbs and build some core strength with a yoga or pilates class at Flow Yoga or BodyMind Pilates. Got some seasonal frustrations? Let out the aggression and take a boxing class or martial arts at The Fortitude Gym or Featherston Muay Thai.

For something a bit gentler, try swimming some laps or aqua jogging at the Trust House Recreation Centre, or an Aqua Fit session. If you have a decent sense of rhythm (or looking to improve in that area…) check out Tangle Ballet, which runs out of Fareham House in Featherston and has classes for all ages. Or, if you’re more of a Broadway musical lover, sign up for an adult tap class at the Jacqui Murray School of Dance in Carterton. And if you’re a real tiger for punishment? Give the CrossFit regimen a go at CrossFit Manaia and Karnage-X Fitness in Masterton.


Get a Tattoo

We’re not talking anchors, roses, skulls or other types of popular body-art tattoo, but the life-changing art of micropigmentation, otherwise known as paramedical tattooing. Micropigmentation refers to both cosmetic and medical tattooing and Rebecca Fisher has extensive training both here and overseas, offering everything from cosmetic enhancements to the face, scalp micropigmentation (SMP) for hair loss, 3D nipple and areola reconstruction and skin camouflage for scars, burns and other skin diseases.


Get Creative

A great remedy for the winter blues is to get creative juices going. There’s no shortage of creative courses and opportunities for the artistically inclined, or those who feel like discovering a new hobby. Here are a few ideas…

Artist Jane Sinclair teaches painting workshops and classes in rural Wairarapa. She can tailor a special weekend workshop for up to 12. Head to South Wairarapa and Martinborough’s Ventana Creative Collective for regular workshops: perfumery, leaf sculpture, giant knitting, life drawing and more. And if you’re a winter bride, Ventana hosts life drawing classes for hen parties – complete with male model!

Or check out Come Sew With Me – a working vintage sewing machine museum. And, for the wordsmiths and poets among us, join the monthly writers meet-up, Write On, on the first Thursday of the month at Masterton Library.