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What is custom washi tape and how it is printed? We got you!

Posted by Sticker Mule on

As soon as a customer orders, their anticipation and excitement grows as they await the mailman. However, many times, items are shipped in bland, brown boxes which do not excite the customer.

At Sticker Mule, we are changing how items are packaged and helping companies get their customers excited about receiving their shipments. With our custom decorative packaging tapes you can promote your brand and engage your customers. (Perfect for those unboxing videos that are all the rage these days 🙂)

The best part is we don't charge extra for different colors and instead promote awesome designs that use as many colors as possible.

Before we show you some kick-ass examples created by our clients, let’s learn more about how we can make decorative tapes.

What is a decorative tape called?

Decorative tapes are now synonymous to washi tapes but the latter is just a variant of customized tapes. The material used for personalized tapes may also vary, depending on the use.

For example, washi tapes are purely decorative due to the rice paper material used in making this tape. Though they may hold materials together and can be used to wrap gifts, it is not advisable to use them for packaging, especially for boxes meant to travel long distances.

So what type of decorative tape can be used on packaging and boxes for shipping? We’ll get to that in a while, but first, let’s take a look at washi tapes.

What is washi tape?

Washi tape is a customized tape made from rice paper. It is available in a variety of widths, textures, and designs. They’re mainly used for decorating boxes, planners or journals, rooms, phones, and other devices.

They are called washi tapes because they literally translate to “Japanese tape.” Washi tapes originated from a company called Kamoi Kakoshi Co. Ltd. that collaborated with Japanese women who came up with colorful designs. Their reason? Because they’re bored with the usual, plain masking tape that so many of us are familiar with! (And honestly, we can’t blame them.)

How long does washi tape last?

To know how long washi tapes last, it is important to know the material used to make them. They are usually made from paper but recently, there are also washi tapes made from fabric and tissue.

Is washi tape as strong as masking tape? Or duct tape?

For people asking if washi tape is as strong as masking tape, the answer is yes and no. Washi tape is similar to masking tape and can last for a year or more. However, if you are using washi tape made from tissue, then it won’t be as durable as the one made from other materials.

How do you make custom packaging tape?

If you wanted to create your own washi tape or your own custom packaging tape, you’ve come to the right place! At Sticker Mule, we have created a video tutorial on creating a personalized packaging tape that even beginners can follow!

Step 1: Open your design software and make sure your dimensions are correct

Before you start designing your sticker, make sure your design will fit on the surface where the packaging tape will be printed.

For example, here at Sticker Mule, we print on 3 inches (width) by 12 inches (length) tape. So if you want to print your packaging tapes with us, make sure the length of your design is 12 inches long or any variants (two six inches, three four inches, six two inches).

Custom Packaging Tape Sizes

Step 2: Incorporate your brand logo and other distinguishing designs

Designing Custom Packaging Tape

Start designing using your preferred software. It's okay to overlap the images for a seamless look. Make sure the design looks balanced.

Step 3: Transfer the design onto Sticker Mule’s template

Click on the packaging tape template on Sticker Mule’s template tab. Follow instructions on how to transfer your packing tape design.

Make sure all edges are aligned before you submit your design to be printed!

Custom Packaging Tape Template

Alternatively, if you have a logo, artwork or design in mind that you want us to convert into a packaging tape, you can easily send that over and we’ll take care of it!

That’s not even the best bit. At Sticker Mule, we use BOPP tape which is stronger than the material used for washi tape so it’s ideal for shipping packages. An added bonus is that all our packing tape is eco-friendly and recyclable!

Custom decorative tapes examples

Over the past couple of months, we saw thousands of amazing designs and thought it’d be cool to share 7 designs that really stand out. Below are 7 designs that can serve as an inspiration for your own tape.

1) Thanks to the Sticker Mule team, I’m absolutely happy with the Custom Packaging Tape. The texture, colors - are perfect. Also, it's very useful for me that this tape is water-activated and pretty wide. Usually I use it to package (what a surprise :D) goods with my design (such as charms, stickers, art prints) to send them by mail. - Olga Davydova

Custom packaging tape design by Olga Davydova Custom packaging tape design by Olga Davydova

2) This roll of packaging tape is pretty fantastic. Not only do we grace the surfaces of our shipping boxes with it, but we also love to include it in product shots, use as decor in booth setups or maybe even clip a square off and toss it in a customer order. Thanks Sticker Mule, for offering cool products to help make our brand look better. - Kristin Schleihs

Packaging tape design by Kristin Schleihs Packaging tape design by Kristin Schleihs

3) I think we all mentally wait at the mailbox when we're expecting an order. When a customer peeps in their mailbox I want them to be able to tell they've got an order from us straight off the bat! We designed this awesome tape with illustrated versions of each of our jewelry products to amp up the excitement as our customers rip open their boxes. The packing tape is a small investment that makes a big (colorful, in our case) impact! Buying anything, especially jewelry, is an emotional purchase and a beautiful, well packed box helps our customers enjoy their new goods from the moment they lay their hands on it. - Jamie

Custom packaging tape design by Jamie Custom packaging tape design by Jamie

4) Attached is a few pictures of our packaging tape. We love to use it primarily on our shipping boxes. But recently we have been experimenting with using it on padded envelopes and even some product packaging such as mailer boxes. Thanks for offering such an incredible product. Let me know if these pictures work for y’all. I can definitely take additional photos if needed. - John Marquez

Sawdust & Embers custom packaging tape design Sawdust & Embers custom packaging tape design

5) At Pennyknot, we use Sticker Mule packaging tape to add a color and pattern pop to plain shipping boxes. It helps people know that something fun is (securely sealed!) inside. - Jenelle

Pennyknot custom packaging tape design Pennyknot custom packaging tape design

6) Maybe just a couple of words why I'm a fan ... From the moment I got the tape, I really liked it. It is strong, I received way more than I expected and the quality and color of the print is really good, especially because my logo has a lot of small parts. A friend interested in the tape asked if applying water to the back of the tape to make it sticky is really time consuming and my answer was that it does not take me any more time than pulling the back of the sticker off. Before Sticker Mule tape I had to first tape the package with regular tape and then add stickers with my logo to the package. Now I only tape the package and branding is taken care of. So I'm definitely a fan! - Ženja

Custom packaging tape design by Ženja Custom packaging tape design by Ženja

7) As a professional brand marketer for the largest credit union in my region, I know the importance of maintaining a consistent brand identity throughout all marketing pieces. This is why I strive to stay consistent in everything I do for my personal cooking blog.

In an effort to grow my brand, I like to do giveaways from time-to-time to attract new fans. When shipping the prizes to the winners, the packing tape will pique the interest of those who haven’t yet of my brand and hopefully turn them into fans. I also plan on making branded mugs & t-shirts for sale soon, so the poly mailers I already have from Sticker Mule should also hopefully help in converting new fans. - Jess

Custom packaging tape design by Jess Custom packaging tape design by Jess

There are countless ways to delight your customers and grow your brand using full color packaging tape and other custom printed products. And you can get started with your own tape design for just $4!

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