Cost-cutting aunty Angela Te Whata on her unexpected social media stardom as savings guru

Angela Te Whata never imagined that her weekly shop would turn her into a social media hit.

"I just chucked my phone in the kitchen and I was going through all my shopping. I thought, 'Oh, no one's going to watch this', but I thought who cares and just shoved it on Facebook and it just went crazy," said the unexpected influencer.

Since September, Angela's been posting her whacky videos from her west Auckland home, which have also made unlikely stars of her whānau too, including daughters Waimirirangi and Cherish Te Whata.

"People will be staring at us at the supermarket because they'll be trying to figure out, 'Is that the lady off Facebook?' and we're just like, 'Mum, people are staring again'."

Angela's husband Fred's cameo roles in her videos have turned him into an unlikely star too.

"My whānau have been cool, especially my husband, he just rides along with it."

As well as the laughs, the self-confessed bargain hunter also offers consumer advice, particularly timely during a cost of living crisis in Aotearoa. Angela is no stranger to financial difficulties when she was raising a young family of six.

Angela Te Whata.
Angela Te Whata. Photo credit: The Hui

"Once you struggle, you'll be more compassionate, more understanding towards others who struggle. I always keep that in the back of my mind.  Like I know how hard it is, but I also know you can come out the other end, too."

The teacher aide (kaiāwhina) and huge NZ Warriors fan plans to continue making her unique videos to ease some of the stress in whānau lives.

"When someone says you make them laugh or you've made their day or something like that, I love that."

Made with support from New Zealand On Air and Te Māngai Pāho.