Remember the scene in Love Actually when Rowan Atkinson spends what seems like a lifetime wrapping a gift for Alan Rickman’s character? Well I love all that! I have always had an obsession about packaging and I’m not even going to say how many pins on Pinterest I have purely for packaging design. I buy the beautifully scented products at eye-watering prices from Jo Malone mainly for the fact they almost re-inact this Love Actually scene when getting my ‘gift for a friend…(but it’s really for me)’ item in front of me.
I think I’m also one of those rare types that actually enjoys wrapping Christmas presents, even though one year I ran out of paper and selotape so had to get creative with some tin foil, not one of my best but it worked. To quite a few people it really doesn’t bother them, and that’s completely fine, each to their own, but to me when something is so beautifully wrapped that you don’t want to open it & ruin the packaging then it’s a job well done by the person or business that’s made it. It feels like such a treat and makes you feel so happy that someone has put so much effort into making their gift to you as special as possible.
My problem is that similarly to art styles, there are so many packaging styles that I like that when it came to designing the packaging for Sleepy Bee Studio I couldn’t make my mind up on what I wanted. We did eventually decide to use NoIssue and do multiple tissue paper designs based on the themes we created and also design a branded version for the more generic items that didn’t necessarily fall under the initial four themes of Botanical, Cambridge, Darwin or Stargazer. I love how they turned out, and have had such positive feedback from customers that it makes all the effort Gav and I put into the artwork and illustrations worth it. We are both however currently still in denial about doing the next batch of themes as is really does take a huge amount of time to prepare!
The lovely thing about running your own business is that you can essentially do whatever you want when it comes to how you present your products, and so when it comes to wrapping online orders when I add in little extras to someones order I get to play around with how I wrap the extra bits and pieces I add in. I use the different tissue designs based on the kind of thing they’ve ordered and then add extra details like hand written thank you cards either on thick textured paper or onto smooth vellum, using different coloured Finetec ink and adding in mini wax seals or stickers and ribbon. I know that again similar to someones artistic style once you have established your look you should stick to it so that your brand is instantly recognisable, but I know what I’m like and I just don’t think it’s something I can stick to forever. I love to experiement with everything so it seems too constrictive to only produce one particular style rather than let it naturally evolve.