Decent packaging is important. It’s what stops your biscuits getting broken, your eggs getting crushed and your milk from leaking out all over the supermarket floor. It’s there to defend and protect all the stuff that needs defending and protecting. It’s the same in storage. There are lots of types of packaging you can use to keep your stuff safe whilst it is in store or in transit.
From Storage Boxes to Bubble wrap – here are 5 classic types of packaging that see a lot of use in our London self storage units – and the stories behind them…
1. Bubble wrap
No, it’s not a light evening meal prepared by Canadian crooner Michael Bublé (known ra’and theese ‘ere Lundun parts as Mickey Bubbles). It’s not even a low-cost alternative to the stress ball (although it certainly could be). But it does seem a fitting material to kick off our list of stellar packing products. The plastic fantastic of trapped air has become ubiquitous in our modern world of e-commerce and boxing stuff up. It’s the go-to material when you need to fill, wrap and protect against impact – all rolled into one – literally.
Strangely though it didn’t start life with this purpose in mind. In 1957 two entrepreneurial inventors – Marc Chavannes and Alfred Fielding were trying to come up with a kitsch kind of plastic 3D wallpaper. Whether they intended it to offer come insulating quality is unknown, but they couldn’t really get the concept to work. In 1960 Fielding co-founded the Sealed-Air Corp, as the pair had realised their creation could be used for packaging instead. Boom! Oh, no, perhaps we mean Pop.
2. Storage Boxes
Cardboard boxes have been keeping small kids happy at Christmas since 1890. Well, they probably have as that was when the pre-cut card box (of the type that flat packs and can be opened out or assembled into a box) was invented by a Scottish born Brooklyn resident called Robert Gair. His concept was a part one half of the puzzle – the other Corrugated cardboard was invented in 1871 by Albert Jones of New York City. He invented a single face corrugated board for wrapping wine bottles and lanterns. His original idea was refined by others – notably Oliver Long – who added a second face of board, which pretty much created the sandwich of cardboard used to make the storage boxes we are familiar with in 2014.
3. Dust Sheets
Dust sheets have likely been around since sheets were invented. Being that was long ago and no-one could possibly claim the credit for weaving a big square of fabric that you could use to cover something, we’ll have to just marvel in the simplicity. It’s a large fabric cover that stops dust getting on what is underneath.
4. Sticky Backed Tape
Blue Peter presenters like to call it Sticky backed plastic, but to the boffins it’s known as Pressure-Sensitive Tape. It’s a term that covers a wide variety of useful sticky-backed-fantastics – from Sellotape (an example of where a brand leader has become the de-facto name for the product) to Parcel Tape, Duct Tape, Gaffer Tape, Helicopter Tape and Parcel Tape. They all started life in 1845, when an inventive Doctor called Horace Day designed an adhesive bandage to treat his patients.
Since then behemoths of industry have put the concept to good use – including Johnson and Johnson (band-aid) and 3M (masking tape and cellophane tape – known as sellotape in the UK).
5. Manual Handling Gloves
The meteoric rise of nail bars, means that when it comes to heavy lifting – for the ladies at least – a decent set of gloves are definitely in order, and no, we don’t mean the finest pig-skin with furry cuffs. For the chaps too, in managing your storage, gloves can be a useful extra. We particularly like those orange sticky non-slip gloves. You can feel like you’re in a Tango advert whist moving your stuff from car to storage unit.
So if that’s whetted your appetite for bubble wrap, or got your fingers twitching for a variety of packing boxes – we’ve got them and an even bigger variety of essential self storage packaging available to buy in store, or you can have them delivered.