Hi, I have only shipped one bear so far, I just wrapped him in gift tissue paper and placed him in a box with peanuts.
But wanted some suggestions on how everyone else packs and ships their bears.
I had custom window boxes made for my dolls to fit in, then placed that box into a shipping box, but I know that would
get expensive for the larger bears.
Thanks ahead of time.
Hi Tami, I do just what you described. And while my supplies last, I put a gold foil seal on the tissue with the Golden Teddy Award 2005 sticker. It's not really necessary but since I have a whole roll of them I may as well use them.
You can get free priority mail shipping boxes and adress labels. Just ask you local postoffice or go to thier website.
I also don't like to spend a great deal of money on packaging. It's only going to be thrown away. I do like my bears wrapped nice and neat and pretty though. You can get nice tissue paper from the Dollar store. It's exactly the same as Hobby Lobby only less expensive.
Since you have been in the business of dolls it sounds like you have quite a bit of knowledge already.
I had a bear take 2 months to get to France.....even though it was priority mail, that was nerve wracking because the postmistress told me there was no insurrance available....
Now I have a packacge to PA that seems to be taking the long scenic route, (you can not trust those gollies!!!) that is worring me....but the hubs says give it one more week. (Sorry Kim one more week......and a few prayers....)
Terri taught me to put minitures in nifty tupperware type containers, inexpensive waterproof and saves the little guys from gettins squished... Yeah Terri
Someone else wrapped their bear in color cordinanted tissue paper but it got wet and the color bled into the bear.......that was a long time ago but I keep it in mind.
I received a large bear from
Canada, the artist had wrapped her very well, and then wrapped the box well, and then covered nearly every square mm of the package in wrapping tape....When I saw that box I figured there was no way any water or coffee or whatever could have permeated the wrapping.....it was so well done.
With that in mind though I opened very carefully! And that wonderful artist saved hubs from having to wrap a Christmas present, she had done such a bang up job!
I certainly understand your concerns Tami. I know alot of us have priority boxes from the post office. You order on line and they come and the box is brand new and therefore pretty durable and sturdy. (They are free)
I don't like peanuts.....but thats just because they are messy.....I love bubble wrap....and I save all the bubble wrap that comes in the dooor...I have also been known to use paper towels as extra softness padding.
Here's what mum does. She does all of the packing.
1. I ask the girls back in our receiving department to save the air pillow for me. Wal*Mart just throws them away. All of the DVDs, videos, and cds are packed with them. They can fill up a 45 gal trash bag within a couple of hours. I get these for about 6 to 8 weeks, then we have enough to get us through for a year. Our pantry is almost full of air pillows right at the moment.
2. She carefully places tissue in the bows to keep the shape.
3, Each piece is carefully wrapped in tissue.
4. Then they are placed in a clear plastic bag. (Our excelsior comes in bags of six, so we just reuse the bags that hold the excelsior packages)
5. The plastic bag is tied shut and a tag identifing the piece is attached.
6. This is then packaged in a clean new/recycled box. With air pillows carefully packed around the bear to keep the bear from tumbling around the box.
7. Then we place an invoice in an envelope, along with a thank you, and bag of goodies.
8, Seal the box and place a shipping label and off to the Post Office or UPS.
Our tissue comes from nashville wraps www.nashvillewraps.com You can get tissue, bags, boxes, and ribbons at really good prices.
I get my plastic pattern bags from www.gtbag.com You can get a thousand for about $50.00.
In the past I wrapped my little ones in white tissue paper, then placed it in a pretty little gift bag. I buy the gift bags at Hobby Lobby for 3/$1.00. But these are tiny bags.
We had a discussion about this not so long ago and I remember a few people mentioning that they put the bears in a cello bag to prevent any water damage. So I recently purchased some bags at the dollar store. They were with the Valentine's Day stuff. They had a lot of different designs on the bags to choose from. And there were 25 in a package for only a buck. Now they were small so they would be best suited for minis. So for my future critters I will give up the gift bags and put them in cello bags. And I always include a personalized thank you note.
And as for filling up the rest of the shipping box...peanuts, air pillows, bubble wrap...whatever I have at the moment that I didn't have to actually buy!
I haven't read all the posts... though am thinking that if we could all run out to our receiving department like Jared and him mom that we'd have no problems having packing supplies on hand!!!
Fran - here in the US we can get shipping boxes free from our post office... though I'm convinced that our ever increasing postal rates help cover the expense!!!
I have gotten bears from a number of artists in the past 6 months.... each one had a unique way of packing.. some in tissue and bubble wrap. Another in a wonderful little oval cardboard-like box with a pretty ribbon around it. Another used colored plastic handled bags.
When discussed in the past it was suggested NOT to use colored tissue at the color can rub off onto the bear and if the tissue gets wet the bear will be a mess!!! We've also discussed not putting anything smelly like potpouri in the box as some are allergic to these scents. And no food if shipping overseas.
Here is what I do most of the time... after giving the bear a hug good-bye: I often use white or natural colored tissue around the bear, put the bear inside a tall plastic bag, gathered at the top with a ribbon, nice and tight to make it semi-waterproof. Then a note is attached to the outside of the plastic bag. All is then carefully placed inside the box and I use whatever I have on had for padding.... styrofoam peanuts, air bags... love those things... bubble wrap, tissue. I'm all for recycling!
OK, I've suddenly hit the point where my eyes can't focus and I could just nod off so best go to bed.....
Great ideas guys! Now I'm going to re-think my way of shipping stuff. I know it's soo much nicer to have a nice pretty package to open.
Just one thought as well. I know some of you have mentioned it, but make sure your bear is in a plastic bag. I know sometimes they just may leave the box on your step and it could get all wet, or who knows what happens to the box during transport. There would be nothing worse than your buyer opening up a smelly wet bear.
Thanks for the links Jared. I'm going to order some bags right away!
On packing and insurance... I have been working in a UPS Store for the last 2 years and now I am working with my former boss in our new business "SOHO Services" we ship FedEx and US Postal.
FedEx when shipping ground is 15% less than UPS Ground in price and depending on weight is less than the post office. FedEx and UPS atomically come with $100 insurance. (FedEx maybe your cheaper choice. FedEx Air & International is also better in price than UPS).
That said you can add more insurance but if your packing materials and box don't meet the standards set and your critter is damaged you may not get your money back.
Use a new box or a box with no dents, damage or ripped areas, pack only in peanuts or Styrofoam. Your box should bounce when dropped, you must tightly pack your critter, if it moves in the box when you shake it - you need more packing.
Tissue and a plastic bag are great for water damage. If you pack in newspaper or brown paper and your critter is damaged you are out of luck, paper of any kind is not considered packing. Paper flattens when something heavy is set on top of it – your critter has no protection plus paper is heaver than peanuts. I have seen many insurance claims through UPS refused because the item was packed in paper and or a “used box.
Tracking with FedEx and UPS is automatic, Postal is extra. When shipping FedEx and UPS if your package is lost (both have good delivery records) and you insured the contents you get your money back pretty quickly. USPS good luck with that! Especially if you don’t insure, add delivery confirmation – anything with a bar code. With none of the mentioned there is no way to track your box.
Did you also know that postal once it leaves the USA is not insured? Insurance is only good from drop off to where it leaves the country. If you are sending to say 3rd world country (no offense to anyone) for example if customs seizes it or it is “lost there is nothing you can do. I’ve seen this happen to a customer of mine.
Pack well and in good boxes, insure with tracking and you’ve done your best.
P.S. If your customer wants you to send it without insurance make them acknowledge that in writing!
Great suggestions offered by everyone. I especially emphasize wrapping well in a plastic bag for the reason that happened to me once. I sent a baby gown to my daughter and some solvent was spilled on the box in transit. By the time the gown arrived it smelled really bad. She had to wash the little gown before presenting it to the person it was meant for. I wrapped it in plastic, thank goodness. Who knows what it would have been like otherwise.