It happens every year at holiday gatherings, birthday parties, and anniversary celebrations of all kinds. You get the perfect mug for your loved one, but tragedy strikes between purchasing and giving the gift.
The infamous broken gift is usually something fragile and made of glass or ceramic. Like most coffee mugs that you can purchase or create, the ceramic material does not stand up to temperature changes and compression.
Could this have been avoided? And how do you wrap coffee mugs for gifts? Here we will talk about the items you need and the individual steps involved in wrapping coffee mugs. These great gifts will be snug and ready for giving as intact memories in no time!
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What You Will Need
There are a few choice items you will need to purchase to wrap your gift correctly. The best results tend to come from materials used professionally, either by USPS or another shipping provider.
You can purchase the following items in-store or online without any hassle.
- Wrapping paper of your choice
- Clear wrapping tape
- Bubble wrap
- Tissue paper
- Cardboard box
Step 1: Wrapping vs. Boxing
If you really want to make sure your coffee mug doesn’t end up cracked, chipped, or broken, you need to consider boxing and then wrapping your gift. Just wrapping it in thin paper is a disaster waiting to happen!
So, grab yourself a cardboard box and make sure to use your tape to seal one end of the box. This will assure that you can adequately pad your gift with packing materials without breaking, bending, or ripping the cardboard box.
You also want to make sure that the cardboard box is larger than your mug. Making it at least 25% larger than your mug will ensure that you can fit padding, packing, and the mug inside the cardboard box.
You can choose not to place your mug in a cardboard box and wrap it in paper, but do not be surprised when the condition of their gift disenchants the recipient.
Other Wrapping Material Options
If you insist on wrapping instead of boxing your mug, there are some options available to you. A bright idea would be to wrap the mug, after Step 2, in bubble wrap. This might make the present seem larger than it is, but it will protect the mug from chipping and light pressure.
Another good idea is to use cotton or hemp paper to wrap it. Though it is still paper, more padding provides an extra layer between the mug and any harmful outside influences.
Of course, pressure is ceramic’s worst nightmare, so make sure you wrap the mug gently. You must also ensure that you are not stuffing the wrapped present anywhere where it might get snagged, broken, or chipped.
Step 2: Padding and Packing
This is an essential part of wrapping a ceramic dish. It is the most critical part of this process and is usually the most overlooked. When using padding and packing, you have to consider the material used.
By far, the best solution is packing paper and bubble wrap. First, take the cardboard box you’ve sealed at one end and set it upright. Next, cut a piece of bubble wrap that fits inside the box like a sort of liner.
Make sure there is enough bubble wrap to not only cover the taped bottom of the box but up the sides as well. If you need to, use more than one piece of bubble wrap padding. Once this is done, you can slide the mug into the box.
Your mug should now be encased in a cardboard box and within the padded walls created by the bubble wrap. The final step is to take your packing paper and stuff it into the mug itself. This will assure that the inside of the mug is resistant to chipping or cracking when in transport.
Make sure that the mug is full to the brim with packing paper! If you would like, you can also stuff in any excess bubble wrap you might have.
Alternative Packing and Padding Materials
If you prefer something you have on hand, newspaper is also an acceptable substitute for packing paper. Parchment paper and construction paper are great ideas for a more sturdy packing material as well.
Likewise, if you do not want to use plastic bubble wrap, you can line the box with a few layers of newspaper or other thicker alternatives like cardboard and cotton. Just makes sure to leave yourself more room in the cardboard box!
If you have access to wool or other fibrous materials, this can be an eco-friendly way to pack your mug gift.
Step 3: Fragile Contents
Your mug is fragile! If you plan on shipping your gift via mail service or courier, mark the package as fragile so your carrier knows.
Add another cut sheet of bubble wrap or material to the top of your gift before you shut the box. Taping it up securely afterward will ensure no shifting or excessive compression during shipping and transport.
Step 4: Decorating the Gift
This might seem unimportant when properly wrapping coffee mugs as a gift, but you can provide some extra padding this way. If you first stuff and then wrap the mug in wrapping paper before you box it with bubble wrap, you can give yet another layer of protection.
It also doesn’t hurt to get creative! Bows, ribbons, streamers, and even holiday-themed greenery like pine needles and branches can provide the perfect padding and scent to your gift!
Frequently Asked Questions
What about bagging my gift?
Bagging your gift is an option, but if you are going to bag your mug, make sure you follow the boxing steps above to prevent breakage.
Where can I get the packing materials?
Any online retailer like Amazon, Etsy, and other specialized stores can provide you with fast and convenient options. If you’d rather go somewhere local, the Post Office sells these items every day. A specialty office store is also an option if there is one close!
Why is there a specific way to wrap mugs/ceramic/glassware?
Ceramic is clay that is fire-treated and as fragile as any other pottery and glass. The right amount of pressure or the wrong impact can crack, break, or chip the delicate material. No one wants to be that gift-giver.
How often do packages/gifts get mishandled?
Though it happens more during busy times of the year, like the holidays, packages are often insured against breakage by delivery services. Your best bet is to trust reputable businesses like the United States Postal Service, FedEx, DHL, and UPS.