Design-surprise service

The concept behind Presents in the Post has charmed our cotton socks off! It’s a subscription service to receive really cool surprise gifts made by local designers via snailmail once a month. A monthly lucky packet for indie design lovers, if you wish. VISI chatted to the brains behind the venture, Pammi-Joy Oppenheimer.

Who is Presents in the Post?

Raj is the present protector and delivery maker. Most of the time he is in his tree house near Pimuk or travelling oceans in an inherited canoe. Listen to his story.

In his absence, Presents in the Post is run by myself, Pammi-Joy Oppenheimer. The website was developed by myself and a team of two friends – mastermind programmer Baruch Lubinksy, and layout, font and copywriting queen Stephanie Ana. 

What did you do before?

Most days you will find me scouting and auditioning talent for TV commercials and local series. Now you can also catch me hunting down local designers and artists. Casting director by day and surprise present delighter by night.

What is Presents in the Post?

Presents in the Post came about with the intention of creating a platform for local designers and artists, a chance to dazzle customers with gifts in the post and a creative way to introduce the makers’ very own online shop. I also think it is fantastic to be able to spoil yourself and friends with beautifully wrapped surprises.

How and when did it start?

Presents in the Post launched in October 2012 but Baruch and I have been working on it for quite some time. What started as a simple idea turned into a gazillion hours of work on a love project. After many cups of tea, a variety of characters drawn and some serious techie genius, the story of Presents in the Post started to take shape.

What are some of the gifts that have been sent out?

Our first month girls were able to make the choice between a present inspired by a boho burd, queen of prints or classic nostalgic girl. The lucky gift-getters were spoilt with exquisitely wrapped presents by Pichulik. Pichulik is a bespoke range of neckpieces that are sourced from local materials, and an assemblage of wild and wonderful artefacts.

Boys were able to choose between an item made in either black, tan or brown leather. Customers were surprised with origami wallets made by the talented duo at Wolf & Maiden. They design furniture, lighting and homeware, and empower up-and-coming crafts people, designers and artists.

Look out for the launch of their online shops on the Presents in the Post website.

Who do you collaborate with?

Makers of things to hang on the wall,
makers of things to wear on your feet,
makers of things for DIY day,
makers of things to take on a trip,
makers of things to wear when it’s cold,
makers of things that grow in the garden,
makers of things to keep up your pants,
makers of things to write notes on and wrap things in.
Makers of things to give to a friend.

What about the South African postal service?

I partnered with the South African postal service as I am hoping customers will be charmed by the nostalgia of traditional post. I am hoping that there will be some positive stories that come out and encourage people to use the post office. Snailmail definitely requires the utmost of calm and patience. Items bought in the online shop will be sent via courier for a speedier experience. 

What if you don’t like your gift?

If you don’t like your present, put it in your present cupboard or spoil a friend. 

Who does the illustrations on the website?

All the illustrations are by Julia Anastasopoulos at knolc. Her characters have brought the world of Presents in the Post to life, in a way that can only be described as spectacular. I have a giant mural of hers in my bedroom. The magical characters and their stories are so dear to me. Go and have a cup of tea in the children’s section of the Book Lounge or check out her most recent work, a series of large printed murals, at the Civic Centre MyCiti Bus Station. 

Sign up for the monthly surprise for R250 per month.

Only a few more days until the Wednesday 12 December cutoff for Christmas gifts. Knolc, the website illustrator, is doing the ladies’s surprise and Jaco Haasbroek is putting together the gentleman’s surprise. This month there is also a little girls surprise.