Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Supply Savvy- The Warehouse Mystery box

Pink Paislee Mystery Box goodness

I have a lot of supplies.Not as much as some paper crafters,but more than enough for me. I manage to keep some current product in my supplies but I also know how to use older products in fresh, trendy ways. I don't have the money to buy new supplies on a regular basis, so I really have to decide how and where I will direct my paper craft budget. My absolute favorite way to stock up are warehouse mystery boxes. If you are not familiar with a warehouse mystery box, it's basically a box filled with supplies from one manufacturer. It is sold at a deep discount.Sometimes you have an idea of what will be in it.Sometimes not. Most times, the sales occur right after CHA and they are clearing the previous releases to make way for the new ones.

Some of my friends think I am crazy to like them so much. They say they would rather know what they are getting for the money. After all, how do I know that what I receive will be something I like.It is a valid argument. My answer to that is to choose mystery boxes from manufacturers you love.Chances are, if you are like me, you swooned over pretty much everything they released during the last CHA. Most of the time, everything I get in a box is something I love. I get a sampling of the items that I had on my wishlist. I just don't have the money to buy a full paper collection, embellishments and all, when it comes out. By the time it goes on sale, I often can't find all of the collection anyway since parts of it are sold out. it's very frustrating when what is available is scattered between 2 or 3 different on-line retailers. So grab bags and mystery boxes work well for me.

So will you end up with something you don't like? Sometimes, you will. However, I enjoy the challenge of finding ways to alter the item to fit it into my style. If it really won't work, I share it with a friend who likes it or I donate it. When you break down the value of the mystery box, it's almost like you got that item for free anyway. 

Tips for Mystery box sales:
- buy only from manufacturers you like.You will have less chance of receiving things you don't like.
- sign up for newsletters and email notifications from manufacturers. You will often find out about sales this way.
- once you know when a sale occurs, make a note of what time of year.Most manufacturers hold these around the same time every year. While the date might not be exact, you will have an idea for when to keep an eye on their blog.
- some manufacturers have several a year.I tend to buy only once a year.Sometimes, items get repeated if more than one sale occurs in a year.
- boxes cost between $20 and $75 depending upon the manufacturer.Know the true value of what is in the box to determine if the sale is the best value for your money.

Companies that have had mystery box sales:
My Little Shoebox
October Afternoon
Tattered Angels
Maya Road
Piggy Tales
Pink Paislee

Grab bags:
Watch for grab bags at your favorite daily deal sites or on-line stores. I tend to see advertisements for My Mind's Eye and Fancy Pants. I have also seen advertisements for bundles and grab bags of lifestyle crafts dies and spellbinders.

Currently having a sale:
Jillibean soup always has discount grab bags and paper packs in their store:

I know I have always been happy with my warehouse box purchases. It's a lot of fun to see what you will end up with!

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