Jane Means, gift packaging expert to clients such as Ralph Lauren, Banana Republic and Harrods, spoke to us about her successful career in gift wrapping, she explains how she started her very own branded ribbon and the story behind her being commissioned to design a very special Anniversary card for Her Majesty The Queen.
Having gift wrapped for just about every size of business. Jane holds a unique perspective as to what makes packaging remarkable. We got her to share her story and give practical advice to retailers thinking about smartening up their packaging.
Rocaba Blog (RB): So Jane, what has been the best aspect about starting your own business in packaging?
Jane Means (JM): Every day is different; you never know what’s around the corner in terms of a commission or a challenge. One day I’m working with a market stall owner and the next with a luxury brand or retailer.
RB: You have a rich history in gift wrapping, what first inspired you?
JM: I loved watching Blue Peter as a child and so from a very young age I was interested in arts and crafts. That love spurred me to start making smaller rolls of ribbon about 15 years ago. There was a gap in the market and I went for it. That got me started with my brand.
RB: How have you seen attitudes towards packaging and design changed over the years?
JM: Attitudes have definitely moved on, especially with regards to recycling. Everyone is looking at reusable packaging. I’ve been writing on my blog for some time how people can recycle their packaging or find new uses for the packaging they have lying around.
RB: And can you share with us your predictions for the future of print and colour? What new trends are on the way?
JM: Pattern is coming back larger and less subtle than it is currently. I think the sharper black and white monochrome look is obviously back, as well as acid colours. Icon wise, I’m seeing a lot of big patterns, as well as imagery of birds and hunting, anything from silhouettes to abstract designs.
RB : And finally, we’ve been dying to know how your work ended up in front of Her Majesty The Queen.
JM: I was approached by the Crown Estate of Somerset to produce an Anniversary card for The Queen. It had to include an ordinance survey map of the area, but I was also keen to use velvet for regal royal finish. It took quite a few nights, and at least ten prototypes to get it right. However, I got a thank you letter back from the Crown Estate and even Buckingham Palace, which was great. As well as the Anniversary card, I wrapped a present for the Palace. I was at a book signing and a lady approached me at the event and asked me to wrap a huge book. I actually found out much later on who would eventually unwrap it.
Jane’s goal of making the seemingly mundane into something beautiful has brought out the creativity of many business owners. Along with her determination, she’s changing the face of retail packaging, one ribbon at a time.
To get wrapped up in Ribbon or to find out more about Jane Means please visit