Know of any cheap clever or ecologically friendly packaging ideas for short runs of CDs?
December 16, 2003 6:15 AM   Subscribe

Clever or eco-logically friendly packaging ideas for bands on budgets who are producing their own short runs of CDs?
posted by DenOfSizer to Media & Arts (10 answers total)
The CD itself isn't terribly "ecologically friendly," far less so than the most un-green packaging you could come up with particularly for a small pressing, so at the most it would be a gimmick. That said, you could probably make up pretty decent CD envelopes by sewing them together from discarded scraps of fabric or carpet remnants (!), folding them from the Sunday comics, or redecorating and reusing the packages from one of the hundreds of AOL CDs that hit your doorstep each week.

What are the relative priorities of being green, being cheap, and being clever?
posted by majick at 6:26 AM on December 16, 2003

Well, there's what my heart says and what my wallet says, so I'll settle on clever=1, and let 2 and 3 flow as they will. We're talking about 500 CDs or so.
posted by DenOfSizer at 6:49 AM on December 16, 2003

If you plan to sell CDs at shows, you could package them in gatefold sleeves insteal of jewelboxes.

A set 500 would set you back $40.00, USD.
posted by Smart Dalek at 6:54 AM on December 16, 2003

Right now I'm doing a story on a hyper-ecological Minneapolis band, Cloud Cult, who use their web site to get people to donate old, used jewel cases, which they then re-use. Cheap, and they claimed that it wound up being more ecologically sound than using cardboard sleeves.
posted by COBRA! at 7:20 AM on December 16, 2003

When I've made CDs for friends at home, or for the MeFi swap, I've relied on paper cd cases. You can print them using whatever soy-based inks you can find on 100% post-consumer recycled paper, and they're not too rough to fold. Slip them inside a corrugated cardboard sleeve for packing and shipping and you're set. If you want to do no work at all with layout and design, you can use I started with their pdf doc and then did my own layout.
posted by jessamyn at 7:26 AM on December 16, 2003 has some pretty cool cases and cds. Mixonic will let you upload the content, and then burn, label, and package your cds for you.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 7:28 AM on December 16, 2003

Here's a company that reuses jewel cases - Earthology

As an added note, depending on what your limited run is, I have about 200 empty jewel cases that are in good condition sitting on a shelf that I'd be happy to provide, possibly for the cost of shipping given that they're bulky, if not heavy.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:16 AM on December 16, 2003

Buy a bunch of old 5 1/2" floppy discs off ebay, most will have a fold on the outside. Seperate the fold from the disk by using an exacto blade, and you will have one of the sides of the disk open, take the stuff inside out and fold the part you opened up into the CD. Then, put the CD in.
posted by drezdn at 8:40 AM on December 16, 2003

My band just released our own CD on the cheap. We used these little foam hubs to affix the CDs onto a tri-folded card stock that we printed at Kinko's. We used a local company to create 200 CD-Rs for us for $1 a CD. By the way, CD-R has come a long way and will rarely fail to play in most CD players these days.

We assembled everything by hand and inserted each CD into a plastic self adhesive protective sleeve.

I calculated our unit cost (for packaging and duplication only) and it came out to about $2.30 per CD. Plus, we didn't have to make 1000 CDs, which I doubt we would ever be able to sell. As it stands right now, we are probably going to sell out--a much better prospect than having 800 CDs lying around that you're never going to sell and be able to recoup your costs.

You can see the finished product here [self-link].
posted by fletchmuy at 8:47 AM on December 16, 2003

CD Envelope Origami.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:48 AM on December 16, 2003

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