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Make your Handmade Products Stand Out! Using Creative Packaging
How can you make your products look special?
There are some easy and creative ways to make your handmade products different from the rest at festivals or shows and make a special surprise for customers ordering your products. This lens is all about using creative packaging to make your creations stand out from the crowd and make them memorable for your customers.
How much time and effort you want to put into your packaging is totally up to you. You can quickly create simple stylish packaging or spend more time creating something totally customized to your business.
Why Is Creative Packaging Important?
You are competing with not only other producers of handmade products but with mass produced items. Your handmade products are more expensive than those from a factory assembly line, but, for very good reasons. The extra time, effort, and expertise (not to mention passion) that goes into handmade products are what make them worth the extra price to your buyers. Your packaging needs to reflect this care, effort, and passion.
Here are a few general tips:
- Include photos of your packaging in your shop, let your customer know how their items will arrive.
- Plan your packaging ahead of time and keep all your packaging materials organized in one place (I just use a large box).
- Any tools for your packaging like scissors, rubber stamps, paper punches, etc. should also go in the box.
Interview I gave on packaging, craft shows, and Etsy.
Books on Creative Packaging
Customizing your Hang Tags & Display Cards
Instead of basic white price tags or stickers try making your own creative tags or have some printed for you. The same goes for the little hanging cards for earrings.
Ideas for making your own tags
- Print tags out on colored cardstock.
- Use big shape punches to create fun shapes for your tags.
- Use colorful ribbon, yarn, or embroidery floss to tie your tags on.
- Add beads or tassels to the tag for added decoration.
- Emboss the tags.
- Add color with markers, colored pencil, or watercolors.
This is a tag I used to use (redesigned them a few months ago). Not only do they have my business name for my customer but they also have my contact info, background on my creations, and how to care for my polymer clay creations. I think the glass bead on each adds a nice touch.
Tips and Resources for Making your Own Tags and Display Cards
- Jewelry Hang Tags and Earring Cards
Tips for jewelry hang tags and earring cards that lend your jewelry a very professional impression and give your customers a way to keep in touch with you.
- GalleriaLinda Showcase: How to Make Beautiful Earring Cards!
How to Make Beautiful Earring Cards! Now that I am addicted to making earrings after I took a wire wrapping class, I have had to figure out new photo elements, as well as how to display and ship the earrings.
- Make Jewelry Tags from Business Cards
Make jewelry tags from business cards that you have printed professionally online, for a fantastically professional look. Pamela Vale shows you how to do it cheaply and easily.
- Art Bead Scene Blog: Bead Biz...Make your own Earring Cards
Any little bit of money we artists can save these days helps, right? One way I save a lot of money is by making my own earring cards. I have been doing this for years, they are a great way to get your name on your jewelry and they work well in a disp
- The Handmade Business Blog: Pretty DIY Earring Cards
A number of jewelry supply companies sell these great adhesive earring card adapters. You can design your own hanging earring cards for display at craft shows.
DIY Design Book
Giving your customers something to keep their purchases in is a very helpful touch that they will appreciate. But instead of a plain bag or box give them something special. Try some of these ideas for making your gift bags and boxes stand out.
Spicing up gift boxes.
- Use custom printed stickers
- Or a custom rubber stamp
- Sign them
- Add ribbon around the edge
- Decoupage vintage clipart onto them
- Add a charm or button on top
- Use ribbon or cord to make a carrying handle
- Draw or paint on them.
Embellishing gift bags
- Add beads to the drawstring
- Print out your logo onto iron-on transfer paper and iron the design onto the bag
- Screen print your bag. Here is a DIY screenprinting tutorial
- Sign the bag using fabric markers
- Use iron-on transfers or applique
- Add a hang tag to the bag.
Try making your own bags and boxes!
Tutorials and Patterns for Making your Own Gift Bags and Boxes
- Make a Jewelry Pouch without Sewing - Tutorial
Make a jewelry pouch with this tutorial - it's simple, fast, elegant, and no sewing is needed!
- Good Luck Gift Bags - the purl bee
Very cute bag pattern. I adapted it for making my gift bags.
- YarnEnvy: How To Make My Leetle Bag
As promised, I made another Leetle Bag and documented the process for you.
- How to Make Jewelry Boxes
You can make jewelry boxes for your customers quickly and easily, with this fun do-it-yourself project.
- Origami Instructions - Origami Box Instructions
Origami folding instructions - Use pretty colorful papers for gift boxes to make them stand out.
- Gift Boxes by Shala
Free Printable Boxes by Shala
- Â» Packaging vettoriale gratis Â» Idee Montabili
Vector based package designs. Site is in Italian but it's pretty self explanatory/
- Craft Leftovers Â» Boxing Up Giving
These boxes are great to add a little extra something special to any small gift. I like them for any kind of jewelty, stitch markers, and other small handmade goodies for friends.
More Packaging Ideas
Recently I began packaging some of my jewelry differently. While I still packaging most of my jewelry in organza bags I also package some in plastic bags with a printed fold over for hanging at craft fairs and other events. It's easy to do and looks very polished.
Custom Bubble Mailers
Bubble mailers are those cute little padded envelopes that are great for sending small items. They also work great as protective packaging for your small items sold at shows and festivals. 27 Things has a great tutorial for making your own cute custom bubble mailers out of colorful art paper.
Alternately you could cover pre-made mailers with wrapping paper, add a custom sticker, or rubberstamp of your logo to one. You can even order bubble mailers in bright or metallic finishes.
Other Easy Ideas
Try incorporating some of these into your packaging.
- Instruction or care sheets. Make these colorful as well as useful.
- Custom rubber stamps.
- Use embossing powder to give your stamps some added impact.
- Custom stickers (you can buy sticker paper for printing them at home)
- Business cards. Include one or two with each purchase.text
- For jewelry makers make custom earring and pin display cards.
- Ribbons are always an easy touch.
Packaging Resources and Inspiration
- TheDieline.com: The Leading Package Design Blog
The Ultimate Package Design Blog! TheDieline.com defines good graphic design and product packaging in consumer products in industries such as food and drink, bath and beauty, alcohol, and more. Well designed packaging establishes consumers' perceptio
- Packaging Digest
The online packaging resource for delivering packaging solutions to packaging professionals
- DZINE - PACKAGING DESIGN
Smitten by packaging design
- COLOURlovers :: Color Trends + Palettes
Find design inspiration with thousands of palettes and color schemes to fall in love with. Influence color trends by rating, commenting and sharing.
- Beautiful and Expressive Packaging Design | Monday Inspiration | Smashing Magazine
Packaging design has the primary goal to attract customers' attention. For this purpose, package designs can not simply inform customers, but also provoke feelings and communicate emotions. An effective packaging looks attractive, impresses with its
- Seasonal Creative Label Packaging Ideas
Graphics.com: The shared resource for creative design. The shared resource for creative design.
- Etsy :: The Storque :: How-To :: Seller How-To: Packaging Ideas
My very favorite thing about buying on Etsy is getting packages — it's like a little mini party each time, thanks to the thoughtful packaging Etsy sellers put together! Ribbons, stickers, stamps, extra little goodies, oh my. What a delight! So, dear
- Creative Packaging for Handmade Soap - LoveToKnow Crafts
Creative Packaging for Handmade Soap From LoveToKnow Crafts Soap makers who plan to give their creations as gifts or start a soap making business have a number of choices in creative packaging for handmade soap. Thoughtful packaging choices turn ord
Things to avoid in your packaging.
- Inconsistent. Keep things looking consistent, I don't mean everything has to be the same, but the style and theme of your packaging should all have a similar feel.
- Inappropriate. This should be easy, make the product and packaging match. If it's retro styled give the packaging a retro look. If it's Victorian don't put it in a tied-dyed box.text
- Unprofessional. If you're here I'm sure your not planning to just slap something together quickly. Make sure glued items don't have edges sticking up, corners aren't ripped off tags, all text is correct and spellchecked.
Presentation at Art and Craft Festivals
Festivals and shows are a great opportunity to put your packaging ideas to the test. Don't hide all your packaging away in a box behind the checkout area. Put out a little display to show your customers exactly what they'll gets when they purchase one of your products.
Keep it fresh! Rethink your packaging regularly and how it fits into your brand.
Updating my Packaging
When I first wrote this lens a few years ago my packaging looked much different than it does today. You can see some of the differences in the pictures but they are still a bit different to what I currently use. I reconsider my packaging on a regular basis and think about what I can do to make it better and more in keeping with my current branding.
Currently my cephalopod jewelry is sent out in an organza gift bag in a color that compliments the piece, colorful tissue paper, a shipping box that is rubber stamped with my logo, a brochure with care instructions, a business card, and a coupon. You can see the photo below shows what it looks like.