Today’s the day I nail my packaging. I’m thinking candelsticks and bull head lights packed in black foam or formed polystyrene inside a sexy black box. The tag will be a folding black queen chess piece looped with translucent gold ribbon. I’ve never seen this done before so am concerned it’s prohibitively expensive. But it’s unthinkable for me to create beautiful products without exquisite packaging. Good packaging is something I re-use with pride. I don’t think my house says anything about who I am or what I stand for but my packaging most certainly does.
I want packaging that reflects me at my best. Tall, hot, sexy, a little too dressed up perhaps but perfectly executed. The last thing I need my packaging to be is cheap, non-descript or god forbid falling apart. I want my wholesale and retail customers to scream with delight when they receive my products. To know instantly that they they’re buying something beautiful worth owning. Not because it’s ridiculously expensive or has a faux/pompous exclusivity, but because it stands for something we all need in life – affordable everyday luxury that makes life that bit more civilised; something exquisite worth savouring.
Packaging is key for online businesses. It’s the first impression of the product or brand. Stores can get away with bubble wrap or brown paper bags because by the time you’ve gone to the trouble of taking something to the til you’ve already fallen in love with it. Online purchases are different. You Google the product, negotiate the website and checkout basket then wait. It’s important that what you receive is worth waiting for. There are enough disappointments in life without adding to them with ill-advised shopping.
I love everything I’ve bought at net-a-porter primarily because I love the packaging. I never shop there now and don’t especially miss the products but I do miss their packaging. There’s something about beautiful things exquisitely packaged that’s irresistible. Just ask my ex.
I tell my daughter everyday how beautiful she is. That no matter how desperately she wants to fit in with everyone else she is special. A black rose among thorns, a black queen amongst pawns a black diamond in a sea of white gems. She’s desperate to look just like them and fails to comprehend her uniqueness. So I straighten her beautiful afro locks and reassure her concerns about her figure.
Growing up I knew I didn’t look like anyone else but had the confidence to know it didn’t matter. Women’s lives are not taking the direction I’d hoped. Why are there so few women like the Prime Minister in Borgen? What happened to women working for a living? When did we collectively decide it was OK to give that up? Working with children is hard. But nothing worth doing is ever easy. Many of my friends own independent shops and employ other women. If there’s an independent shop on your High street that you love walking past or dropping by for a chat with the owner then buy something from it for someone you love (even if it’s for yourself!). If you buy everything from John Lewis or Amazon the independent shops you covet may not be there to enjoy come New Year.
My brand is all about daring to be different and the way in which it can enrich your life. Because life is so much more exciting when people take different approaches to solving the constant dilemma of how to create a cosy home you’ll love coming back to on snowy winter nights after a long day at the office.