My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #905: A Good Day Awaits Me

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 12-15-2012 12:45 PM 1472 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 904: Elf Things Part 905 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 906: Making Memories »

I was a pretty good “Elf” yesterday and I accomplished a great deal. I not only drew up my ‘secret gift’ but I also got it cut out. Today I will be doing the sanding and finishing and then I can chalk another one up as finished! It came out nice too and I really WISH I could show it here. But I know that the recipient stops in and looks at the blog from time to time and I don’t want to risk the chance of it being seen before Christmas. I just have to say it is ‘nice!’

I was really excited yesterday because my box of soaps came from Kelly (Rivergirl here on LJ’s) . It was a wonderful assortment of her awesome hand-made soap, body butter and lip balms. These are going to make great gifts for our mail carrier and other assorted people on my list where I would love to give a small token of thanks for the great service that they give all year. The soaps are beautiful as well as made from pure and natural ingredients and when I opened the box it smelled DEVINE! Not too strong, but incredibly yummy! Each bar was beautifully placed in a pretty organza pouch which made it lovely for giving.

Those of you who read may remember that I have somewhat of a box fetish. Well, Kelly sent the package in this incredibly awesome box that had little penguins making snow-angels on it. It looked like they were dancing! I took a picture of it along with the soap for you to see:

I feel like my Christmas came early! I also get to keep a couple of the products for myself! ;)

Speaking of boxes . . .

One of the STUPIDEST things occurred yesterday. To me, it is an extreme waste and I just don’t understand it.

For years I have been a fan of Clinque skin care products. I like their stuff a lot and order from them regularly. I have used them since I was a teenager and I was thrilled when I moved to Canada to find that they have a good presence here too. I also found that they frequently offer specials for free shipping, which means that I can order online and have my stuff sent here since the nearest store is in Halifax nearly three hours away. It is very convenient and cool.

Well, for Christmas they had a special offer where not only do you get FREE SHIPPING, but they also let you pick a really cool gift box for FREE with any order. The boxes came in three sizes and looked really nice. Great for storage of craft supplies or anything, even for giving. So I placed a couple of orders to get one of each of the three sizes. I would use the products anyway, and it would be a great time to stock up.

Well . . . yesterday I received a box from them. The box was sizable so I thought that they consolidated the orders and sent them all at once. Great! It comes from Purolator which is a courier here similar to UPS. Here is a picture of it:

I put my hand in the picture so that you could see how big it was. The weight on it was .45 lbs. I opened it up, expecting to see my products and I saw this:

Lots and lots of “fluff” along with appeared to be one of my free boxes folded flat. Since it was pink, I knew it was the smallest of the three and I thought how smart of them it was to make it fold flat so nicely.

But my admiration soon faded as I continued to look through the box for my products. I pulled the invoice and all it contained listed on it was the free box. I was puzzled.

I thought there was a mistake, so I phoned the number provided on the invoice. I spoke to the representative and I learned that I indeed was going to receive my three products that I ordered, along with the two other free boxes ALL IN SEPARATE SHIPMENTS!!!

I thought I heard wrong! Yes – there are a total of FIVE more boxes that are at least this size on their way to be delivered on Monday. Via Purolator no less, which I use all the time to ship my packages and I know from this costs at least around $25 as a base fee for the smallest box possible.

Now you can imagine how I felt. What a HUGE and UNNECESSARY WASTE this was! All the items are being shipped from their warehouse in Ontario, and yes – the shipping costs ME nothing, but how can a company be so inefficient (and stupid) to split up this shipment this way??

I have ordered computer parts before where one component ships from one place and another from another warehouse and I certainly understand why things are sent separate. But this truly boggles my mind!

I quickly folded the box together, which was awesome. It was great quality and thick and sturdy and will serve me very nicely:

But when you see how SMALL it is compared to the large box they sent it in, you can’t help but think of the waste!

I ordered the three sizes because they will ‘nest’ in each other and be great for storage. The size of the products I ordered was tiny little things that can be kept in my purse. Why did they feel it necessary to send this order in SIX separate boxes??

And we wonder why things are so expensive. After all, SOMEONE has to pay for this waste. They should be working for the Pentagon!

So I can’t wait until Monday when I get the rest of the shipment. I promise to show you all a pic. I think they are going to get a letter just to tell them that I would rather have them charge a little less for their products than waste so much money shipping them. Just a thought.

On one last thing, I purchased another incredible item from one of our Lumberjocks here on the site. I was wracking my brain for a gift for someone very special on my list and I didn’t have a clue as to what to get him. Then I saw this posted and I knew it would be PERFECT for him!!! Within minutes I bought it and the wonderful Lumberjockette is going to ship it directly to the recipient. Again I need to be secret, but I promise after Christmas I will tell!

I LOVE supporting my fellow creative people! When I think about it, through all of my networking I have so many wonderfully talented and creative friends and not only am I giving gifts that are beautiful and unique, but I feel like I am helping these artisans keep creating too. I highly recommend that you consider doing the same – no matter what time of year it is and what the occasion. You will get personal service, wonderful gifts and help a talented friend keep creating. It is a Win/Win/Win all around!

Well that is it for today. Back to being an elf for me! Have fun this weekend and enjoy the time and preparation for the upcoming celebrations – no matter what you are celebrating! I know I am going to have fun no matter what!

Happy Saturday!

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

7 comments so far

View Dan Krager's profile

Dan Krager

4005 posts in 2233 days

#1 posted 12-15-2012 02:35 PM

Your story of waste intrigued me. From what I understand though, you’ve seriously overestimated the efficiency of our Pentagon. This would be incredibly efficient by their standards!
Merry Christmas!

-- Dan Krager, Olney IL One should always prefer the probable impossible to the improbable possible.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9228 posts in 2919 days

#2 posted 12-15-2012 02:53 PM

It boggled my mind, Dan! But I received this comment on my Facebook page from Jim Barry of Woodworkers Workshop, who is a distributor of not only my patterns, but many large yard art patterns that cost a great deal to ship to customers:

”I can give an explanation as to why a company sometimes ships like they do in your example. You and I would pay a lot for courier because we do not have the volume of shipments. Companies require a minimum average of shipments in order to keep the lower rate they get from a courier company. Otherwise, all orders shipped for a given period will be subject to a higher rate. So, a company will ship what appears as unnecessary, but there’s a reason behind it. Of course, the flip side to that is that company’s employee is too stupid to know the difference. As for the size of the box, that could be the smallest box they use for shipping. Or, it could be a standard box that is necessary to obtain the low rate from the courier. So as you can see, there’s all sorts of factors at play.”

While I a still befuddled, it does look at the situation from another standpoint. I suppose there is a reason somewhere in there for them doing things like this. I still think it is an incredible waste when push comes to shove.


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View Leldon's profile


67 posts in 2872 days

#3 posted 12-15-2012 04:11 PM

We bought some things from best buy the other week. It was 6 different things and we got six different boxes on different days! I was shocked at how stupid it was! When Sheena and I were on the honeymoon, we bought a grill from a place in Myrtle Beach. They shipped it here for $8! And this was a huge box! No lie, it would had probably cost you or me $100 or here to ship! I was shocked and the guy told me about the discounts his company gets.

View Celticscroller's profile


1269 posts in 2072 days

#4 posted 12-15-2012 06:33 PM

Good morning Sheila,
It has always amazed me that large corporations waste so much. A little planning and organization could save a lot. I can understand Jim’s point of view as a company that ships stuff but surely there is a more efficient way to operate. And the sad thing is that not all countries have good recycling programs to reuse some of this waste!

Enjoy your day. A little snow mixed with rain here.

-- Anna, Richmond BC

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 3303 days

#5 posted 12-15-2012 06:43 PM

wow, you are being such a wonderful elf, im sure there are many who will appreciate there gift from you, and your boxes your getting will be really cool and a great addition to your collection…i really dont get why companies ship like that, they must get some kind of discount…surly they do..well have a great weekend, grizz

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View Roger's profile


20928 posts in 2803 days

#6 posted 12-15-2012 11:07 PM

Wow! and Ditto what’s already been said. I’ve been saying for years that we (not me and not you, or many others) are a very wasteful nation. Doesn’t make a lick o sense to me.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9228 posts in 2919 days

#7 posted 12-15-2012 11:23 PM

Hi to all of you! I hope you all had a great day today! Yes, I do see Jim’s point of view, but wasting resources just to get a better price still seems like such a travesty to me. The shipping companies should not price things so that it encourages companies and corporations to be so wasteful. Unfortunately, in order to make up for this waste, the burden falls on the smaller businesses and personal consumers that have to pay more to make up for what the large companies cost the shippers. (After all, SOMEBODY has to pay! I wouldn’t imagine it would be the shippers that will operate at a loss!) Just look at the box from Kelly. Nearly $40!! AND Keith was reading me an article as to how US shipping costs to Canada are going to rise at the end of January. (On average of 15%) It is already terribly expensive to receive a shipment (either personal OR products) from the US. And the USA is constantly saying in the media that they want to encourage trade with them. But companies like UPS also charge huge brokerage fees and there are customs and import fees on top of the expensive shipping. It just doesn’t make sense to me.

Opening this box and seeing this (and knowing that there are FIVE more coming for a handful of cosmetics) really makes me sick. This large box weighed half a pound. The total shipment probably weighs 2lbs at the most.

Like I said . . . someone has to pay for it. They aren’t doing that out of the goodness of their hearts.

Oh well, such is life. I guess I just had to have my say.

And those gifts from my wonderful friends are the best in the world! I hope everyone who reads this considers some beautiful hand made things this holiday! :)


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

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