Episode 114 - Over Coffee: Creating, Packaging, and Shipping Paper Flower Kits

Season #4

Dive into the details of what it really takes to offer paper flower kits to your customers. We talk packaging, shipping, client expectations, and more. 

Many paper florists end up teaching our craft. People want to know how you created that amazing paper flower! And once you start offering tutorials or classes, you are inevitably going to be asked about where to source our specialized materials like a crepe.

One answer to this issue? Offering kits with your tutorials.

In our latest episode of Paper Talk, we dove into what it really takes to offer kits to your customers. If you haven’t put a kit together before, there are lots of issues that you probably haven’t thought of. Here’s just a few to get you started.

Here’s what you’ll learn when you listen to our conversation:
► How Quynh began teaching and creating kits.
► What goes into creating, packaging, and shipping paper flower kits.
► Whether you should ship internationally or not.
► Managing clients’ expectations around ordering and shipping.
► How to manage preorders and why they could help your business.

Packaging Wholesale Items

If you’re going to make a profit from selling kits, you should definitely look into buying items wholesale. That said, you can’t just throw a bunch of unmarked wholesale wires and crepe paper into a kit.

“I don’t think people are going to be hard on you because you’re not offering international [shipping]. They might be disappointed, but I think it’s totally understandable why. It’s out of your control.” - Jessie

Many customers who are buying paper flower kits are new to our craft. They bought your tutorial and kit because they often don’t feel equipped to find the items themselves. It’s all so new to them! So they aren’t going to recognize the difference between a 22 gauge and a 16 gauge wire. You need to repackage these wholesale items in a way that customers can easily understand.

We discussed much more in the episode about packaging kits, including how to best present your product to make it a magical experience for the customer. Presentation matters!

Storing Products Safely

Buying all of those wholesale items means that you are going to need space to store them all. But you can’t shove them just anywhere.

As we discussed in more detail on the podcast, you have to make sure that these items won’t be damaged by crushing weight or by the elements, and that they will still be fresh if you don’t ship them out to a customer until months later. 

One way to avoid some of these issues is to offer preorders, meaning that customers buy something that won’t ship to them for some time. In the episode, we talked about how we used this method for our Awesome Blossom! workshop series, and everything you need to think about when offering preorders. 

Shipping Costs

Many small business owners don’t take into account all of their shipping costs. They ultimately end up losing money because they didn’t account for all of their expenses.

When you put together paper flower kits, you need to take into account the shipping costs for buying wholesale items, as well as what it will cost you to ship to customers. Kits can be heavy or bulky depending on what you include! You need to know how much a kit will cost to ship before you sell it at a set price that won’t cover this expense.

“I think that’s really key when you’re selling things to other people. You want to make it appealing. You want to make it look pretty.” - Quynh

And this gets even more complicated with international shipping. Quynh has had international customers request her kits, but it isn’t as simple as them offering to cover the increased costs. On the podcast, you can hear our discussion about the pros and cons of shipping internationally, and how to deal with the guilt that might come when you turn down international customers. 

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