About two months or so ago, I heard about a company called WhimseyBox through blogland somewhere. It's another monthly subscription set-up, like UmbaBox or BirchBox, but this one contains craft supplies. And for only $15? Obviously I was more than intrigued. I spent some time browsing their website, and admittedly found some of the information to be quite vague (shipping times, supplies included, etc.). Upon receiving my first box, I think that this vagueness may have been intentional.
First of all, my box took seemingly forever to arrive. I signed up at the beginning of March and the website said something about boxes shipping in the second half of each month. Again, quite vague... Nearing the end of March, however, I began eagerly checking my mail daily, anticipating my WhimseyBox arrival. This went on for more than a week before I received an email on March 29th informing me that my March box was "on its way" and would arrive in about 5 - 7 business days. Of course I found this a bit surprising, not to mention frustrating, but I was so excited about the concept that I let it go without too much thought.
My box finally arrived 7 days later, on April 5th. A bit silly to receive a "March Box" in April, no? Oh well. I was thrilled to find my package on my doorstep, especially after waiting for so long to receive it.
I opened the package to find the supposedly fabulous white Whimsey box; the company talked up this box as if it was the best box I'd ever own. Frankly, the box was nice, but relatively average. Inside the box, the contents appeared beautifully packaged. Look at that ribbon and tissue paper! Quite the buildup, no? That card under the ribbon is the advertised "art card," but is actually a rather flimsy cardstock print with project instructions printed on the back. Mine was bent, which didn't make a lot of sense since it was IN THE BOX... There was also a business card that had tape remnants on it as if it had been peeled off something else, which was odd...
The box was advertised as being full of new and exciting products to inspire creative projects for makers. Inside, I found a block of wood and four paper template diagrams on top (instruction sheet pictured is the back of the "art card"). Underneath the wood, there were two small spools of bakers twine, two spools of wire, and a small stamped canvas pouch containing 50 small nails. The pouch reads "you're gonna nail it," and is really pretty cute. WhimseyBox suggested a string art project, and supplied everything necessary for such an undertaking.
That said, does this look like $15 worth of supplies? Don't get me wrong, I understand that shipping and packaging is included in the cost, but I must admit that overall, I was pretty disappointed. I think that crafters are a frugal bunch, and I would be surprised if an experienced crafter and frequent user of craft coupons would spend $15 on these supplies. In fact, I had these supplies or similar ones on hand already. As an actual company, I would think that WhimseyBox was buying these supplies at a wholesale price, or that they could even get free samples from companies in exchange for advertising their product. For that reason, I cannot logically understand how this adds to $15 worth of product.
Furthermore, I would not call the proposal of a string art project innovative. String art has been around and gaining popularity on Pinterest for at least a few years, and I would hardly call replacing string with bakers twine or wire a notable reinvention. Overall, I had hoped for more inspiration.
The underwhelming product assortment, lack of inspiring content, and disappointing shipping time left me pretty dissatisfied. At first, I wanted to chalk it up to a bad month, understanding that the company was in the process of moving from Houston, TX, to Boulder, CO. I figured that perhaps April's box would be better, especially since due to the extremely late ship time for March's box, I was already "resubscribed" automatically for April's box. I then researched the company a bit further online, and found that March's ship time was actually a marked improvement from past boxes; shipments were reportedly very late and unpredictable while communication on behalf of the company was extremely lacking. Frankly, as time goes on, I grow more and more disappointed with the company. Yes, they're a start-up and yes, they're an indie business, but this level of disorganization is downright unacceptable for a professional company.
I love the concept. I love the idea. I love the website and graphic design. Their social media presence is wonderful. Their ideas are innovative. But their execution? It leaves a lot to be desired.
I suggest giving this company more time to grow before subscribing, if you choose to subscribe at all. Perhaps you will enjoy the projects more if you are a relatively novice crafter, but even still, I'm not sure that the products will be worth $15 to you.