So how does my stuff ship?

Nov - 01 2010 | By

It’s becoming increasingly clear that when folks are asked to pay $3 for shipping small items such as earrings or bracelets, they want to know how they’re shipped–especially if they’re being shipped in envelopes to keep costs down!  I know that $3-$5 seems like a ton to pay for shipping, but it’s really not when you get right down to the raw numbers.  Most Etsy sellers take a loss on their shipping, it seems (and not just the ones that offer “free” shipping!).

I’m going to be adding more pictures as I take them, but I thought that I should toss an example of how small items such as bracelets, pendants, or earrings from Jude’s Chest will be shipped to buyers.

Small items such as jewelry will be shipped US Postal Service either First Class Mail or First Class Parcel.  This means for even the smallest items, I’m paying about $3.50 at the high end for some pieces in shipping cost alone–that doesn’t include packaging!  Let’s take this item for example, which is a small, Swarovski crystal bracelet for my sister (a gift for her 19th birthday).

The whole package weighed a little under 2 ounces.

Now, in future shipments I’m going to wrap the bubble wrap a little differently than I did in this package in the hopes of keeping the whole shebang under 3/4-inch because then it ships cheaper at the First-Class flat rate rather than at Parcel, which is slightly more expensive.

The envelopes I use are bubble mailers, which means they have a layer of bubble wrap inside the envelope already.  On top of that, I bag the pieces in little gauze bags for the smallest of the small items (Jude’s Tear pendants, all bracelets, and earrings not attached to cards).  Larger items will be wrapped in muslin or other small quantities of cotton fabric or placed in cardboard jewelry boxes lined with cotton batting.  Then these items are wrapped in a square of bubble wrap for extra protection in transit.  After that, everything goes into the envelope (this is for small items that will fit in bubble mailer envelopes.  Other items may actually be boxed, especially multi-piece orders).

Every piece will ship with my business card and cards giving some metaphysical and/or historical information on the stones used in the piece.

When you get right down to it, all of these things, the bubble mailer, the extra bubble wrap, the bags and boxes: they all cost money above and beyond the actual shipping rate per piece, which is already higher than the stated shipping price for some items.  I hope this gives some insight into how I ship and why shipping rates are what they are!

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