Holding onto that iPhone box

I’m not a pack rat by nature. I don’t often keep items “just in case;” I’m more likely to trash them, even if I may regret it later.

There’s a notable exception to this minimalist streak, though: technology packaging. In our shed, I have the original boxes for nearly every tech device we own: two laptops, two iPads, two Kindles, AirPods, two Magic Keyboards, an Apple Pencil, and more. My rule of thumb? “Keep the box if there’s any chance you’ll resell this someday.”

That strategy may not be logical. Sure, buyers sometimes pay more for a device in its original box. Oddly, however, many reseller sites don’t actually care whether you have the original packaging; they’ll pay the same amount, either way.

Still, I’ll keep squirreling away the boxes, regardless of the financial return. There’s an intangible benefit: the mild satisfaction of sealing an iPhone in its original cardboard coffin. I feel like I’ve fulfilled my duty, stewarding my device from its shrink-wrapped birth to its day of departure. ◾

(These items have sold since this tweet!)
Life Uncategorized

Package design 101

I love cereal. Breakfast cereal nears culinary perfection–appropriate for any meal, snack, or dessert. But certain situations do require certain cereals. Sometimes you need Froot Loops’ frivolity, austere moods demand bran flakes, and so on. The secret to eternal happiness may well lie in one’s ability to discern the right Cheerio for any given moment.

Imagine my frustration, then, with this pantry travesty:


Hannaford, my local supermarket, uses one fixed template for their entire off-brand cereal line. And, whether by design or diabolical plan, my favorite varieties share this purply-blue hue. Every time I go to pour a bowl, I have to re-read the box labels–or risk substituting granola for raisin bran.

If your customers only recognize your packaging after a close inspection, something’s gone wrong. Make your product lines iconic, differentiated, unmistakable. Make them like this:

Ever grabbed Sprite when you meant to grab Coke? Yeah, me neither.

Ever grabbed Sprite when you meant to grab Coke? Yeah, me neither. Courtesy teachernz.