Shipping Holiday Packages with ShipShapeUSA

Here is a company and product near and dear to my heart, Ship Shape USA. Their product is a Christmas stocking shaped mailer, how fun is that?

The company is the brainchild of Cathy Staller, who's son Tony was stationed in Afghanistan during the 2009 Holiday season. Hundreds of Tony's Stockings were stuffed and filled with special gifts by volunteers and shipped to U.S. troops in Afghanistan and Iraq. The cheery red and white box makes people smile -- the sender the recipient, even people who just happen to see it somewhere along the way. 

When mine arrived in the post they had even written my name across the top. I couldn't help but add a touch of TapeSwell to show you the possibilities.

Till Next Time,

Stick With Us,

And Have a Very Merry Christmas,

Eileen Eisele and The TapeSwell Team

Decorated Gift Package of The Month - December

Congrats to Jennifer F. who won our December Decorated Gift Package Giveaway
Jennifer is getting $50 worth of TapeSwell products for submitting this brilliant idea of wood grain tape, or as we like to call it Faux Bois, wrapped around a gift package and with a matching card.

Till Next Time, Stick With Us,

The TapeSwell Team

Decorated Package of The Month - November & A Giveaway

We would like to introduce to you our newest Holiday Tape pattern, Peppermint Tape, with this simple decorated box.  
Decorated Package of The Month - November
We thought that the Package of the Month for December should come from our fans. If you have your own package decorating ideas, please send us a photo and you might win a $50 worth of TapeSwell products. You can send your photos to our email or upload them to our Facebook page here:

Happy Thanksgiving and Stick With Us,

The TapeSwell Team

7 Tips For Shipping Holiday Gifts

If you’re like us and you need to ship your holiday gifts, here’s a few tips to help you:
Tip #1: Reuse, Recycle, Restyle
Here at TapeSwell we like to reuse, recycle, and - of course - restyle. Grab an old, used box and restyle it with decorative packing tape. It’s easy, economical and it will add a special touch to all of your special deliveries.
Tip #2: Save on Shipping Costs
To save on shipping use a box that is just a bit larger than the gift you are wrapping. The volume of the parcel can affect the shipping cost, so make sure that you are efficient with the size of your packages.
Tip #3: Cushion by Recycling
To cushion the contents you can shred a colorful magazine or you can even use popcorn, which is a little trick we learned from the Post Office.
Tip #4: Use Shipping Tape That Is Strong Enough To Hold A Box
Carton sealing tapes need to be at least 2 inches wide and of sturdy quality. TapeSwell packing tapes meet the postal standards for mailability.
Tip #5: Cover Old Labels
You always need to cover old labels, bar codes and other unsightly sticky stuff, to make sure your package arrives at the correct address.
Tip #6: Add a Pretty Mailing Label
Add a mailing label and your gift is ready to go a long way.
Tip #7: Make a Matching Card for an Extra Personal Touch
Add the same packing tape pattern you are using to seal your gift box and wrap it around a blank card. Write your personal message and include it in your box.

Bonus Tip: Get Your Gift Delivered on Time
If you want your gifts to be delivered by December 25, check the 2010 Holiday Shipping cut off dates from the USPS or FedEx Holiday Shipping or the UPS Year-end Holiday Service Center.

Till Next Time - Stick With Us,

The TapeSwell Team

Tacky Ideas: How To Use Decorative Tapes

Watch our first video of the "Tacky Ideas" Series. Our very own Eileen Eisele is sharing some ideas for styling packages and food containers by mixing and matching decorative tapes.

Till Next time Stick With Us,

The TapeSwell Team

DIY Halloween Party Favor Bags

Some quick ideas on how to create coordinated Halloween party favors. Here we used the Black Lace Packing Tape on a plain brown paper bag and on a white takeout box to create a coordinating duo. Adding the orange details completes the evocative fall look. 

Till Next Time - Trick or Treat!

The TapeSwell Team

Decorated Package of The Month - October

The gorgeous print of the black and clear florals of Bliss Packing Tape breathe life into a plain white box. 

DIY Damask Office Accessories

Turn blah into Voila! Add instant style to plain office accessories by adding damask decorative tape. Now you can have damask all over your office: Damask Pencil Cup, Damask Note Holder, Damask Paper Clip Holder, and even Damask Calculator.

Why stop there? Cover all your folders, notebooks and electronics. And that's our tacky idea for this week.

Till Next Time Stick With Us,

The TapeSwell Team

Tape Art: Mixed Media Art

Some of the most fascinating "tacky ideas" we have seen include using our decorative tape in creating art. We will be featuring various artists and crafters who use tape in their creations. Submissions are welcome.

Kelly's Tape Addiction
Journal Entry Decorated With Pink Twig Tape
(Photo by Kelly Kilmer)
Kelly Kilmer, a mixed media artist and instructor for over 13 years and an avid connoisseur of decorative tape, has a simple way of defining her mixed media experience: “Art done from the heart using a variety of mediums and materials.” The form allows artists to stretch their imaginations and create collages, altered or handmade books, greeting cards, etc. Most of Kelly’s mixed media art is done in journal format and she describes her style as "always evolving."

Journal Entry with Flower Tape
(photo by Kelly Kilmer)
Kelly loves working with tape and its "inspirational color, texture and imagery." She likes to experiment and push the boundaries of the different materials and techniques she uses. Among many others, she teaches a course called Addicted to Tape at venues all over the United States. She also offers online mixed media art courses available around the world and around the clock.

Although decorative packing tape is not acid-free like most traditional scrapbooking and layering adhesives, Kelly puts priority on acting on her inspiration. "I don't worry about how archival things are (or aren't),” she says."I love the different looks that I can achieve layering tape on top of each other, on top of papers, etc."

Journal Page with Lyra Craft Envelope Wrap Tape
(photo by Kelly Kilmer)
Some of Kelly’s influences over the years include Corita Kent, Barron Storey, Dan Eldon, Shereen LaPlantz, as well as old films and animation and her students. Kelly began her affair with this art form when she tried to learn how to bind her own books. She is self-taught and she mostly finds inspiration in her husband and son by trying to see the world through their eyes.

To learn more about Kelly Kilmer and for a schedule for her upcoming lectures visit her Mixed Media Art blog.

Till Next Time Stick With Us,

The TapeSwell Team

Brown and Blue DIY Wedding Favor Ideas

Turquoise and Chocolate Favors in 6 Easy Steps:
You'll need: Plain Favor Boxes, Venetian Tape,
Candy, Ribbon, Pearl Hearts and Silicone Adhesive.

Blue and brown, or turquoise and chocolate, make such a gorgeous duet of wedding colors. It is a classic! (Could this become the new damask?) And making your own favors is a great way to bond with your mom, your sister or your bridesmaids.

Here's our take on making these fun do-it-yourself wedding favors in six easy steps:
1.  Find plain wedding favor boxes in silver or white;
2.  Stick our Venetian Packing Tape with turquoise, brown and plum on clear tape base to add detail to your wedding favors;
3.  Add your favorite candy or chocolates to fill the favor boxes;
4.  Add turquoise ribbon and get flat-back heart shaped pearls;
5.  Glue the pearls onto the ribbon using a silicone adhesive;
6.  Put it all together and voila! You have gorgeous wedding favors that have your own touch without spending a fortune.

Now you can think about making your own place tags or wedding programs in brown and blue. Share your ideas with us!

Till Next Time Stick With Us,

The TapeSwell Team

    Looking For Decorative Tape Art

    We love seeing decorative tape in the hands of artists and the wonderful pieces that come to life. So we will be starting a series of posts dedicated to artists who use decorative tapes as art supplies in their artistic techniques, including card-making, collages, journals, etc.

    If you'd like to be featured and share your creations with other decorative tape enthusiasts, please send an email at TackyIdeas

    Till Next Time - Stick With Us,

    The TapeSwell Team

    Decorated Package of The Month - September

    Decorated Package - September
    Charleston Decorative Tape
    One of our newer tape designs, Charleston, is wrapping the package of the month in September. The design makes an elegant statement in a very subtle tone. Some practical ideas come to mind: 
    • elegant packaging idea for a gift card,
    • packaging for handmade jewelry,
    • packaging for mini chocolates.
    Till Next Time Stick With Us,

    The TapeSwell Team 

    Crafts Ideas For Kids Using Decorative Tape

    Back to School Crafts
    It's back to school time! We thought we'd share some craft ideas using decorative tape that could come handy as school projects or could be done just for fun.

    Craft Idea #1: Make Like a Tree

    Our Faux Bois, also known as Wood Grain Tape, loves to play pretend and to guest star in school plays, on cardboard or in notebooks. Always in the role of a tree. You could embellish with flowers, butterflies, birds, leaf medley, and really any of TapeSwell's nature-inspired patterns.

    Craft Idea #2: Project Tapeaway
    DIY Fashion Projects:
    Damask Headband
    DIY Fashion for Kids:
    Decorative Tape Necklace

    Play "Project Runway" and get the little designers to make clothes and accessories using old rags, cardboard and decorative tape. Organize a runway show with the creations. Take lots of pictures and post them to our Facebook page.

    Framing Kids Art
    Craft Idea #3: Put A Frame On It

    Your kid's latest painting becomes art when you put a frame around it. The Baroque Frame Tape was designed specifically for this purpose. Display the masterpieces prominently and organize an art show: Invite your friends over to see the exhibition and let them know about your art-framing secret.

    Have more craft ideas with packing tape? Feel free to comment and share them with all of us sticky tape lovers.
    Till Next Time - Stick With Us,
    The TapeSwell Team

    Decorated Package of The Month - August

    The decorated package for August is a simple food container decorated with our newest Tassel Decorative Packing Tape. This tape was inspired by an Eastern-European friendship charm, made from twisted white and red yarn with tassels at the ends, 
    called Martinka or MartenitsaFriends and relatives exchange these charms on the 1st of March and they wear them until they see the first stork or the first blooming tree. The charm celebrates friendship and we thought our Tassel Tape makes an excellent statement when used for decorating containers with homemade food, intended for someone you care about.
    Till next time,
    Stick With Us,
    The TapeSwell Team

    Damask Wedding Ideas (Part 2) Another Five Do-It-Yourself Damask Decoration Ideas

    The TapeSwell Team was psyched when we saw this wonderful post by The Blog of Paper Wonders. The ideas are brilliant, the photography is gorgeous and it is all so well written that we are just going to repost their entire blog post (with permission, of course). Please also, visit or visit one of their locations in California.

    We now have Tapeswell packing tape at our new Brea store! To celebrate this momentous occasion and to get you started on your packing tape projects, we came up with a few ideas to liven up any wedding reception or dinner party.

    Damask Table Numbers
    1. Table Numbers
    These table numbers were printed on thick cardstock (we used a shimmery white with metallic finish). Apply your packing tape and mount on a folded piece of black cardstock or leave as a one-layer. Garnish with ribbons and you're done! Who knew a strip of packing tape could add elegance to table numbers. Not I…
    Damask Favor Bag & Damask Favor Box
    2. Gift bags
    The transparency of the tape makes it work especially well on cellophane. We applied the tape down one side of a standard cellophane bag, stuffed it with tissue shreds and threw the gift in, rustling it around a bit for good measure. Finish with a black bow and optional gift tag (see below).

    3. Favor Boxes
    Apply tape over the lid of the desired favor box. Using an Xacto knife, carefully make an incision from the inside surface of the lid. Insert ribbon ends from the outside to hide the slit and tapes the ends down. The good thing is there is usually a double-layer flap on the inside of the lid, so you can hide the ribbon ends under that.

    Damask Place Cards
    4. Place Cards
    I’m sure you guys know the drill now...Just keep in mind that you should leave about 1.5 inches of space on whichever side you decide to stick the tape on. A strip of tape down the left (or right, or top), score, then fold.
    Damask Gift Tags
    5. Gift Tags
    We thought adding a flourishy monogram on the tag would go well with the elegance of the damask and add a nice personal touch. Once again, you could dress it up with a black layer, or keep it simple with damask tape on one side, names on the other. We also added a black donut around the punched hole.

    We didn't wander into the world of programs, menus or invitations this time, but you could theoretically use the same roll of tape to decorate all of the paper goods for your wedding and wow your guests with not only your craftiness and resourcefulness, but also consistent damask pattern =P

    Till next time!

    Decorated Package of The Month - July

    The decorated package of the month for July is all dressed up in our newest Venetian Decorative Packing Tape. The pattern is so inspiring that we thought it deserved a matching card.

    We'd like to dedicate this Thank-you package to our postal worker friends. They play such an important role in our lives. We appreciate all of their hard work and we are grateful for them.

    So Happy Postal Workers Day!

    And till next time,

    Stick With Us

    M.I.A. Custom Printed Tape By TapeSwell

    Here's a photo of a custom tape
    we recently printed for M.I.A.,
    the award winning artist.
    Custom printed tapes are some of the trendiest branding materials right now. It's an excellent way to create customized merchandise packages. 

    It's also a great way to advertise a brand. Just think of how many packages you see daily, either yours or other peoples - these are all opportunities for advertising. 

    TapeSwell specializes in printing full-color images on packing tape and the minimum order is 360 rolls.

    Furniture Makeover With Decorative Tape

    (Top two photos by Stephen Cridland of The Oregonian.
    All other photos by TapeSwell)
    What to do about that piece of furniture that you still like but looks worn and has lost its shine? Why, give it a new life by covering it with gorgeous decorative tape!

    Shannon Quimby, freelance writer for The Oregonian, came up with the idea when she first saw TapeSwell in a magazine. "A colorful packing tape caught my eye," she writes, "The various colors and designs ... jazz up boring packages that we ship in the mail... I used the same concept to brighten up a plain white side table." 

    Shannon used the Mod Blooms and Grid Combo of Decorative Tapes to create this fun side table, but feel free to find your own perfect coordinated combo

    It's easy to apply: no sanding, no painting, no drying, no smell. TapeSwell is great for adding stylish accents to plain surfaces and hiding imperfections like chipped edges, stains, etc.

    Till Next Time - Stick With Us,

    The TapeSwell Team

    Decorated Package of The Month - June

    Our Decorated Package of the Month for June is actually a paper bag, beautifully decorated with one of our newer tape patterns: Pink Paisley. A simple and elegant way to dress up a gift, create a matching card and deliver it with love. It will also show that you really care and you took time and attention to make it yourself. Now, what's a better gift than showing how much you care?

    Till Next Time,

    Stick With Us,

    The TapeSwell Team

    Decorated Package of The Month - May

    There's something about this gift package that spells chic! Created with our Black Dot and White Dot coordinated decorative tapes, which aim to redefine 'The Whole Package'. Your gift packages are not complete until you've sealed them with TapeSwell!

    Till Next Time,

    Stick With Us,

    The TapeSwell Team

    And The Lucky Winner of Our Birthday Giveaway is....

    Tena Sprenger, for her post on Facebook:
    "I love TapeSwell tape I use it on all the care packages i send to my daughter at college. She loves it because as soon as the package hits the Dorm desk they always know it's for her because of the beautiful tape I always use on the package!!"

    Congratulations Tena!

    There will be more TapeSwell giveaways, so follow our blog, Facebook page and Twitter.

    For the best deals on TapeSwell products and occasional freebies with purchase subscribe to our monthly-ish newsletter.

    And Stick With Us,

    The TapeSwell Team

    A Happy Birthday TapeSwell Giveaway

    TapeSwell is one year old! Just about this time last year we launched this business and it's been an incredible ride ever since. Thanks to all of you who are sticking with us... literally and figuratively.

    As part of our birthday celebration we are hosting a giveaway. You could win our heavy-duty decorative tape dispenser (a $50 value) with two rolls of decorative packing tape of your choice!
    To enter please tell us how you use TapeSwell products on any of the following places (each counts as a separate entry):

    1. Write a comment to this
     giveaway post, saying how you use or would use TapeSwell.
    Post on Twitter (make sure to include the @TapeSwell sign so that we can find your post) Example: I use @TapeSwell to ship all my packages;
    3. Write a comment on our
    TapeSwell Fan Page on Facebook;
    4. Post a fan photo on Facebook showing us
    how you use TapeSwell;
    The giveaway ends at 6 p.m. EST on Monday, April 19. The results will be published on April 21.

    Good Luck and Stick with us,

    The TapeSwell Team

    Package of The Month - April

    The Decorated Package of the Month for April is this lovely chinese takeout box sent to us by Angela D. 
    This lovely package will have the honor of holding the favors for the guests attending Angela's wedding. Congrats to Angela and her fiancĂ© and may they have a beautiful wedding in July and a happy married life thereafter! And TapeSwell is sending her a nice gift certificate for sharing her photo with us.

    Share yours for a chance to get published on this blog and maybe get a prize. Speaking of prizes, stay tuned this week for a new giveaway,
    Stick With Us,
    The TapeSwell Team

    TapeSwell - The Easy Package Design Solution for Small Business Owners

    Packaging solutions can be very costly for small-business owners. They involve ordering large quantities that go out of style long before they are depleted. Using decorative packing tape solves two problems at once
    • Firstly, since you have to use carton sealing tape when shipping to clients, why not use decorative shipping tape, and make your clients feel special. 
    • Secondly, there is no need for double wrapping and one box can be reused multiple times because the pretty patterns are great at covering up old labels and other box imperfections. 
    Here's how some very smart businesses are making a great impression with their clients in a cost-effective and low-impact way: just launched a brilliant new line of "fashion-forward tshirts using eco-friendly fabrics with a soft vintage feel and flawless fit." The line was inspired by the documentary “Go Further” with Woody Harrelson and Laura Louie. Their mission is to inspire people to leave the world a better place. Their customers can choose a packaging tape pattern in which they would like to get their package shipped with. 

    Marsha Mifsud, founder and editor of one of our favorite photography blogs The Savvy Photographer and the owner of Sweet Bliss Studios, uses TapeSwell to wrap holiday cards and other prints for her clients. 
    "I desperately wanted a fun way to dress up my boxes to mail them...then I discovered TapeSwell," Marsha blogs. See her other photography packaging ideas.
    Another great photographer, Jess McDaniel of, posted a Twitpic of her packaging of photo prints. "Ooh, @TapeSwell - my packaging is finally complete, after 7 years of not-so-funky packaging. Gorge!" she tweets.

    I'm sure you all remember the brilliant Damask Wedding that event planner Keren from Free Pretty Things For You styled not long ago. 

    Share your business packaging ideas with us. Email your photos to tackyideas @

    And Stick With Us,

    The TapeSwell Team