A week in May


Deutschkurs

The month of May is going to be really busy. German class has started again, but this time it’s intensive. The worst part is getting up early. Every night I have Spätzli to tend to, and by the time I get to bed, it’s nearly 1am. It’s a real struggle to not have dark puffy eyes every morning. Why couldn’t they have afternoon intensive classes as well? I would pounce on those in a heartbeat.

Raccoon busy studying. I need a name for this guy. :)

I ended up taking a Perlsacktier friend to class with me one day. His name is Herzig, the Swiss word for “cute” and “hearty”! He is a raccoon with purple stripes.

Affoltern

The entire week since class started, Michael was away at a conference in Paris. I was so lonely, and I must say that I hardly looked after myself when it came to meals. I was so relieved when he returned. We had a fun time out on Saturday. The above photo was taken at our bus stop in Affoltern. The tree is so beautiful with its pink flowers. So many other trees had red leaves; they reminded me of autumn.

Hubert has found a new friend!

I took another Perlsacktier out with us, this one called Hubert, the spotted goat. We found a new large white Furby plush at Manor. It’s surprising how much cheaper some toys are at Manor (department store) compared to Franz Carl Weber (specialist toy store). I couldn’t resist.

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Finally, we had a short break sitting on a bench and watching people go by. Later that day, we watched Iron Man at Kitag (cinema). Yes, we love action movies. They are worth the money spent, if only for their loud sounds and visual effects.

Now to study for Monday’s German test. Argh!

20% Discount Coupon on Shop | JanetSaw.com

In order to get the ball rolling, I’m giving 20% off purchases made between now and 28th October 2010. Orders need to be at least $5 in total (excluding shipping). Simply enter the coupon code take_20off when going through checkout.

Only 3 weeks more until I pack up shop and close, until about early to mid December. I have to pack most of my things and post them back to Melbourne. Then, I have to hunt down and re-purchase some essential equipment. Not really looking forward to it, but there are also things I can finally try out in Melbourne that I couldn’t do here.

Official Store – Now Open! – shop.janetsaw.com

I’ve been working on this for a long time, and it’s pretty much done, less a few products that I have yet to add.



Please do check it out! Here are some nifty features:

  • Shop in your own currency
  • Create an account to save your cart and addresses
  • Purchase without an account, if you prefer
  • Purchase in bulk with wholesale/discounted prices
  • Customise and add on to the designs directly, using the provided options
  • Get exclusive specials and offers that are not available at my other stores
  • Newsletters for account subscribers (I won’t be sending these very often)

I will be adding all my products on this site, so look out for new and exciting items coming in the next few months. The collections feature (dropdown selections) helps you locate all items in that set or style.

Shipping works a little differently, so remember to check out the shipping information section and my terms and conditions before purchasing. The contact page works like a charm, so now it’s an easier way to get in touch with me, rather than exposing my email address.

Gift Boxes

The reason I have been so absent from posting on my blog is because I have been trying to come up with a way to ship items without them getting squashed AND complying with Swiss Post’s 2cm thickness rule. It’s quite limiting to work with a thickness only up to 2cm. Swiss Post increases the postage price from CHF3.80 to CHF20 for anything over that thickness. Seems quite ridiculous!

Anyway, I have been receiving comments recently, from customers that have received crushed parcels. It’s really not my fault, but since then, I have been so worried that every package I send will arrive in bad state. There’s no way any customer would pay CHF20 for posting small amounts in a tough box, so I had no choice but to come up with something else. I started searching for affordable local packaging solutions, but came up empty handed. I think most Swiss people just prefer to pay CHF20 and be done with it, but I need to have an affordable option. I looked everywhere for plastic containers, boxes… anything that would protect my jewellery but still remain less than 2cm. I found some containers online, but only in Germany. Yet another problem — German companies don’t send anything to Switzerland, and if they do, they charge ridiculous amounts, rendering that option unaffordable. Okay, to make my long story short — I found nothing I could get in bulk that didn’t cost hundreds of Francs/Euros.

I started experimenting with paper folding to make boxes. There is an easy way to make square gift boxes, but not much way to control the height. The box is always square, and size was limited to the sheet of paper. Largest I could make was 7.3cm with A4 paper. I needed something broad but flat, and I also wanted something I could make with ordinary sized A4 paper or card, so I ruled out this technique.

The only way to go was to try making rectangle boxes. This involved lots of cutting and gluing. A lot of work, but I managed to get decent results. First, I got hold of a pattern and modified it to suit my needs in my vector editing program. Printing a pattern onto a sheet had its pros. I could add my logo and other information to the box. I also managed to find thick 160g/m² paper in A4 size from my local Migros supermarket. I could print my pattern on those thick sheets. Each sheet had one larger pattern and one smaller. I need two sheets to make one box, but two sheets make two boxes. I put covers on one sheet, and bottoms on the second. I couldn’t fit both on one sheet, so this way, I make two box sizes. Box 1 is 10.3cm x 8cm; box 2 is 8.9cm x 7cm. The smaller one is still large enough to hold my jewellery cards, so I will use them for single orders.



I got a nifty bone folding tool and some PVC glue that really help get the job done quickly. The bone tool wasn’t necessary, but I could score fold lines for a more professional look — and it also helped me fold it up really quickly. I use the PVC glue to secure the folds and here are photos of my boxes! The logo on the front was easy, I just flipped the card around to print the design.


They are quite sturdy and only 1.5-1.7cm in height. I have to change one thing about my mailing envelopes. I can’t use padded envelopes any more, since that increases the overall thickness. I ordered a roll of ‘Schaumpack-Folie’ (I think they are the thinner foam padding sheets you find with electronics). I have no idea what they are called in English, I just call them thin sheets of padding foam! 😛 They are 1mm thick, so they may help reduce dings on the boxes I send… I can’t have it both scratch-proof and crush-proof, so I guess I choose crush-proof. Who cares if the box gets dinged, right? I’m hoping customers feel the same.