Sunday, 5 October 2014

Box envy. 5 things I've learned about packaging.


I have a love/hate relationship with packaging.
When it's all neatly packaged and ready to go I love it.
The process to get it to this point - not so much.
From the excitement of sending off that first order to wrestling with a sack of bulky objects in the rain, this is a list of things I've learned along the way.
 Before quoting a price for postage, weigh the item in the packaging it will be sent in.
And never under estimate the price of packaging materials.
The first item I sent was a doorstop.
I was so excited to get the order that I went completely overboard with packaging - tissue, ribbon, a beautiful floral box...all this before I even got to the outer wrapping!
Needless to say, it cost far more to post than I had bargained for.

My nemesis is cellotape.
I go completely overboard with the stuff...and when the package is cellotaped to within an inch of its life I   still find a place to add more!
What on earth do I think is going to happen to it?
Am I expecting it to be transported on a river?  Get left in the rain?  Have dubious liquids spilt on it?
There really is no need to use so much cellotape.
Reinforce the sides of the packaging, possibly a few more strips around it, then step away.
Overuse of cellotape is a habit I'm trying to break.

 Box envy.
 My items tend to be bulky, an awkward shape, or both.
 It is much easier to have a neat looking package if you are sending something small.
For many of my items, using a box would send the postage rocketing, so I use lightweight plastic wrapping, brown paper and lots of bubblewrap. Secure yes. Beautiful - maybe not.
And I am very envious of the neat little boxes I see in front of me in the Post Office queue.

 I firmly believe that the inner wrapping should be beautiful, but when it comes to the outer wrapping don't be afraid to recycle packaging materials.
 Not only is it better for the environment, it will also keep postage costs down - for you and the customer.
I am lucky to have access to a supply of strong plastic sheeting from my dad's factory unit, which is not only waterproof but lightweight aswell.
Many shops will be glad to off load their plastic sheeting as it would usually be sent for recycling.

 Midnight wrapping.
 When wrapping multiple orders, resist the temptation to do this after midnight.
 After a 2am wrapping spree the night before, with only jelly babies to keep me awake, I was on my way to the couriers when I happened to glance in my parcel sack, only to see two parcels with the same address!
An easy mistake to make when you're tired, but not so easy to rectify when the parcels are on their  way...
   And while I'm on the subject of pretty packaging - how beautiful is the packaging on this fabric delivery from Japan!



  1. Love the packaging you received from overseas - how lovely to receive something as bright and cheerful as that. Ha, been there with the midnight wrapping/mistakes - but I still wrap late at night when my eyes are tired, but double check everything in the morning lol.

  2. excellent post, I tend to over-sellotape too.

    Recycling is definitely the right thing to do!