Coming up with a fresh idea about gift giving might be like concocting a new recipe. It takes a variety of ideas or ingredients; experimenting with ways to put contents or flavors, together; and making decisions around packaging or presentation. For Alisa Zapiler of Creative Events + Occasions, and Paula Newberry Arnold of Newberry Brothers, their unique concept took its time to develop, simmering for years on the backburners of their minds.
“Alisa and I always wanted to do something together in the industry, something different,” Arnold said. A business friend asked her to collaborate on gift baskets—and that sparked an idea. “We’ve been shopping for clients for years for fruit and gift baskets. But they look dated. We needed an idea that was easy, do-able online, but sophisticated,” she added.
“Paula and I had met and brainstormed for years for something that was needed in our industry that was related to events, but not necessarily at the event,” Zapiler said.
“We liked the idea of having a gift that not only expresses the giver, but emphasizes the quality, and how important the recipient is.” Arnold continued. “When we first started talking about boxes, we looked at wood–but it was not as modern as we would like. They had a lot of straw, a too-rustic look.” The pair wanted to differentiate themselves with a sleeker, modern appearance.
Along the way they brought in other talents—Kien Arnold, with Charming Chairs; and Julie, Karley and Cindy Farber, each one having a special relationship with Alisa and Paula.
“When Cindy, Karley and Julie came on, they transformed the look of the boxes,” Zapiler said. “The Farber family is very much a part of our community. Kien has his own industry—he orders chairs and furniture from manufacturers. Each person in the partnership brings a unique expertise, and the combination of what we bring together has evolved.”
The boxes are designed in black and white, then lacquered for sheen. The tops are transparent acrylic so that givers and recipients can see what’s inside. “We want something that customers are going to feel good about. They will see exactly what they’re buying. We’re not trying to hide anything. We’re very transparent,” Arnold added with a smile. Kien, through his contacts, found a resource to produce the boxes, and a local firm etches the acrylic so that each gift can be personalized with a name, or company name, or logo. The box now becomes a keepsake, one the recipient can use for beautiful storage.
“We’ve taken a lot of time to source the products,” Julie said. “The giver must be comfortable. It’s a convenient way to give a gift and feel good about it. Because Paula and Alisa have such great reputations, there is a trust factor that accompanies this.” She spoke to their standing among their many clients who can be assured that when they order a gift box, it will be of highest quality.
Arriving at an appropriate name was an exercise in group-think. “We were brainstorming, and someone said, “Be Box”—be welcome box, be grateful box, be celebrated box, be baby box,” Zapiler says. They loved the idea that it could be used in so many ways. “It gave us an opportunity to focus on the dozen different themes at this point,” she added.
For the initial rollout, themed boxes are pre-planned. Whether a single personal gift, or a corporate box for hundreds, each one will include an attractive selection of items, carefully selected for quality, usefulness and suitability. Karley says. “Everything will always be changing, like adding a fancy new lollipop. We want to stay on trend, keep things current. We don’t want to send the same thing over and over. There’s a lot of work that’s gone into the selection of products. Each one is tested; each item is a treasure.”
For example, a baby gift box might include a teddy bear, blanket, rubber duck and candy. An “indulge” box could include a natural sea sponge, face mask, journal, candle, sugar scrub, chocolate and champagne bubbles candy.
Every partner on this creative team of six brings special expertise to the group, whether design, event planning, public relations or product performance. Each also stressed their goal to offer not just a unique gift, but one that can be given with the confidence that it fully reflects the thoughtfulness of the giver, and respect for the recipient. According to a company statement, “At BeBoxed, we believe a gift celebrates more than a single event; it’s a way of strengthening our bonds with others and showing them that we care. So, whether it’s one special individual or one thousand dedicated employees, BeBoxed is here to help you foster your relationships.”
Sounds like a recipe for success.
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Joy Lawrance is a freelance writer living in Golden. Her travel articles have appeared in major newspapers across the country. She has also been featured in Colorado Parent, Cruise News and Country Discovery magazines. Joy has been a long-time contributor to the New West family of publications.
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