Monday 15 June 2015

Marvellous Mail ❤

hello again! Today I want to talk a bit about that most marvellous and magnificent of doodahs that is... POST! 

I man Post is amazing isn't it! You can send stuff ALL over the world and get nice stuff back no bother, it's like magic. You're probably thinking, 'but Jade, the internet lets us do that instantly' and yes, it does, but it's not quite the same as getting a letter in the post is it. To sum it up better, i'm going to need to use a Terry Pratchett quote from his brilliant book Going Postal. In this particular case let's pretend the 'clacks' is an email and you'll get the point!

"I dare say the clacks is wonderful if you wish to know the prawn market figures from Genua. But can you write S.W.A.L.K. on a clacks? Can you seal it with a loving kiss? Can you cry tears on to a clacks, can you smell it, can you enclose a pressed flower? A letter is more than just a message." 

Now let's be honest, we ALL love getting stuff in the mail don't we! No i'm not talking about bills and boring nonsense like that, i'm talking about birthday cards, letters, invitations, postcards and... PRESENTS!

Not quite as magical as surprise gifts in the post but still WAY up there with general mail excitement is ordering things! You know how it is, it's 2am on a Sunday, you can't sleep, so you inevitably end up on Ebay and buy a bunch of random stuff then forget about it...
no, is that just me then?!

anyway, you order something nice for yourself then forget (like me) or wait excitedly for it to arrive and when it does, doesn't it make a WORLD of difference when what you've ordered turns up in pretty packaging?!

now some of you might be thinking, 'meh, I don't really care how it's packaged as long as it arrives!' but that probably means you've never received something parceled up so beautifully that you couldn't quite bring yourself to open it straightaway until you'd fully appreciated how MAGICAL it looked!

This happens to me occasionally, usually when I've ordered something from another artist or maker, they'll send my order in a pretty box or envelope, peppered with cute stickers, bakers twine or doodles.

One of the best things I have ever received in the post was a parcel sent all the way from Portland, WA in America. It arrived wrapped like a parcel you might see in a period film or show, with thick brown parcel paper and carefully tied twine. Inside was a handmade book bound in vintage silk tied with a length of white lace trim, along with a beautifully handwritten letter artfully folded and sealed with a stamp of dark blue sealing wax...

It was so beautiful that it took me THREE WHOLE DAYS to bring myself to open it!!! Why? because I literally couldn't bear to spoil the wax seal, even though I knew there was a lovely letter waiting inside, I just couldn't do it straightaway.

No photo could do the thing justice because to me, right at that second, the experience was like being pulled back in time, and just for a moment I felt like a girl in a Jane Austen novel being handed a parcel from afar, all that was missing were the pretty regency gowns and handsome guys wandering around in fancy tail coats.

The parcel inspired me to get my hands on my own stamp and sealing wax (in green to match the ink in my fountain pen) so that I could send out some beautifully presented letters of my own to two friends in Maine.

Because even after i'd finally opened the parcel, unwrapped the book and broken the wax seal to read the letter, I kept thinking about how beautifully packaged it had all arrived and it got me thinking that surely ALL post should be as magical and heartwarming an experience.

Because you see, my dears... if there's one thing I love more than receiving pretty envelopes in the post, it's sending them out!

There's nothing more fun that packaging up an order and making it looks as cute and fun as possible! A lot of my customers are quite far away and sometimes have to wait weeks to receive their postcards or stickers, so I try to make it even more worth the wait by packaging up their order as prettily as I can.
This of course means rainbow hued envelopes, cute stickers and candy stripe bags to keep everything safe and sound as it flies across the world! And I don't just mean that I do this for international orders, EVERY order from my shop gets the same treatment, whether you live in Norfolk or New Zealand.

Every time someone orders something from me, I get a fizzy thrill knowing that they liked my stuff enough to want to buy it! I mostly sell stickers and postcards so I don't get many opportunities to crack out the bakers twine and parcel boxes unless someone orders a tote bag or a Mystery Bundle Box.
Extra special handmade treats going into the Mystery Bundle Boxes
I'm constantly working on new ways to update my packaging, making everything as pretty as possible, while still making sure orders arrive in perfect condition regardless of their destination. I spend an inordinate amount of time on Instagram and Pinterest gathering inspiration. One of my packaging idols (as it were) is Laura at I Love Crafty, she puts a lot of time and effort into her packaging and it really pays off so that every order looks completely gorgeous!
gorgeous packaging details for a Valentine's Order
 If you're lucky enough to have ever received something like this in the post then you know what a pleasure it is to open something so pretty! I mean sure it's great if you order a gift for someone and it arrives looking nice but why shouldn't it look as good if it's something you've ordered for yourself! After all, what's online shopping if not a way of gifting yourself glorious things every now and again, you know you gotta treat yo self!
Laura at I Love Crafty - packaging orders
I've followed Laura and her brilliant business online for a few years now and she's always inspired me to put in that extra bit of effort with my work, especially with the packaging. And if it means that one day my designs and products can be even half as lovely as hers, then it will be completely worth it!
pretty iridescent packaging for Unicorn brooches!
You see what at difference it makes to a plain white envelope or bubble mailer, isn't it heaps more FUN when things arrive wrapped in candy colours and cuteness?! You bet it is. And regardless of whether you spend £1 or £100 in my shop, I will wrap up your goodies in the sweetest way I can manage, and I have a whole side of my desk dedicated to cute packaging and sticker application (I take this very seriously).

Mystery Bundle Boxes, packed full of lovely stuff!
I could (and do) spend hours arranging my rainbow envelopes and preparing the mystery bundle boxes. I stick on spotify and crack out the stickers and it's so much fun I don't even notice the time flying. In fact, the only thing better than packaging up and sending out pastel pretty orders, is when a customer sends me a snap of their goodies letting me know that everything turned up safe and sound and that they LOVE it!

a few snaps posted on instagram from some of my lovely customers
if YOU have ever received something in the mail from me, whether it was an order or just some random thing I sent you, chances are it arrived looking like it had been parceled up by a rainbow unicorn! Which was of course my exact intention.

and if you've NEVER gotten anything in the post from me, then isn't it time you did! Treat yourself (or someone else) to something sweet, you'll find various candy coloured bits n' bobs in my Etsy Shop, my Depop Store and now also on Storenvy

go on then, go pick something nice and then I can pop it in a pretty envelope and COVER it with cute stickers before I post it to you!

and on that note, i'll say goodbye for now, thanks for visiting, see you again soon dearhearts...

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