View Full Version : Shipping how-to's

02-11-2002, 11:21 AM
Hi everyone,

I have some questions regarding shipping of prints and artwork. I have been toying with the idea of selling prints on eBay. I am currently offering prints for sale on my website (haven't had anyone buy one yet).

But I'm wrestling with how to ship this stuff and how to charge the buyer accordingly. Do you ship with a mat or without? How would you ship with or without the mat? Do you eat the charge of the container you ship the art in? Do you include that with the price of the shipping?

Thanks for putting up with my questions!! :D

02-11-2002, 03:25 PM
I was looking at someone else's prints on ebay and saw them say they ship them rolled in pvc pipe. I thought this was a brilliant idea as this plastic tubing is light, cheap and practically unbreakable (but is pretty easy to cut by handsaw). I had been thinking of shipping them flat but this way they will get there without any worries on my part. Of course they will be curved but I say that and won't be a problem once they frame them.

So I just bought 12 feet of 2" pipe at 10$ canadian ...12" lengths mean sI can send out 12 of these so about 80 cents each for packing (with cardboard disks cut out to cover the open ends and everything wrapped in wrapping paper). Maybe a few dollars shipping ... I'll have to see

02-11-2002, 05:10 PM
I ship my small prints flat, and large ones in tubes. I've been using these methods for about 2 years. I have never had a customer complain about the condition after it arrives, so I'm pleased with it so far.

Up to 8x10 no mat:
I print these on 8.5 x 11 paper, add a backing board and put them in an archival plastic sleeve. These materials are figured into the price of the print. I ship this packaged print in a white cardboard envelope (cost is less than 50 cents when bought in lots of 100 -- I add that on to the shipping cost). For these sizes I give a choice of first class or Priority mail.

Up to 8x10 with mat:
Occasionally I offer a mat (11x14 outside dimension). Again the print, mat and backing board are put in a sealed archival plastic sleeve. I only offer this for Priority mail shipping because I use the FREE Prioity Mail box. I still add 50cents on to the shipping cost to cover extra packing like tissue paper or whatever.

Larger sizes:
I put these in an archival plastic sleeve (no board), roll them and ship them in a high quality 18" x 3" tube (the largest I print is 13"x19"). I prefer the 3" wide tubes so the prints are so curly when they arrive at their destination. These can be ordered for less than $1 each, includes plastic end caps, come in beautiful gloss colors and are very sturdy. I usually add $1 to the actual shipping cost and offer both first class or priority mail.

I installed a large curbside mailbox that will hold any of these packages -- as long as its not over a pound, I don't have to go to the Post Office.

My Envelope & Tube source:
I've been very pleased with their products and service.

02-11-2002, 06:02 PM
I send all my work in a mailing tube (the PVC tube will work well too, I plan on shipping all my paintings from the residency I'm on back to the UK in one that another artist is giving me. Was a new idea to me though!)

Since a print in a tube is a fairly standard weight I have a set price for the cost of the tube and postage/insurance. I simply take this into account in the minimum bid price and say shipping is included, ie. seller pays shipping. It means there's no mystery about the shipping price and the bidder doesn't have to even think about it. :) Occassionally the price goes slightly over my set price, but it's made up for when I sell things closer to home and the price is slightly less.


02-11-2002, 11:00 PM
There is a lot of info in the archives about shipping. You might want to do a search and read some of the earlier threads.

Since you are in the US, you can order shipping boxes - free of charge- from the www.usps.com site. They will send you boxes that you can use for Priority Shipping only, tape and labels. I use them all the time for shipping and my smaller watercolors costs $5.00 to ship within the US and that includes up to $50 in insurance and a delivery confirmation (which I never ship without!).

Using the priority boxes means I have no cost for shipping supplies (except the occasional roll of white banner paper I use for covering the painting) and the buyer pays for the shipping costs up front.
There is a large box that is triangular shaped for larger paintings or prints, but they don't make a small triangular shape. However I've found that if you cut one of the flat boxes into halves, you can score it and fold the edges to form a triangle!! Works great for the smaller sizes!! Now I don't buy anymore small tubes.


02-12-2002, 01:59 AM
I don't like to roll my paintings so I ship them flat. I use coroplast as a backing (it is like corrugated cardboard only made out of plastic, practically indestructible). I wrap the painting and the coroplast in cellophane, that protects from moisture and bending. I add a piece of cardboard on to of the painting (in case of something puncturing the package) and wrap the whole lot in brown wrapping paper. Works very well and is very inexpensive. As far as I know, we can't get free supplies here in Canada. Then I always ship Express Post because I get a tracking number and the package is insured.