You come home from a long day of work. You start to move past your mailbox thinking if you open it, there’s probably just a short stack of bills, coupons for pizza delivery, or some weird religious book sent to ‘Current Resident,’ but you still decide to check what’s inside. Sitting there amongst the book-like IKEA mailer, is a Mystery Envelope. The potentional for what is inside is infinite; what would you want to find inside if you received a Mystery Envelope?
“A signed poster of David Hasslehoff,” says Ben Lewis, seasoned graphic designer and co-owner of the newest in off-beat, but seriously intriguing start-up companies, Mystery Envelope. “It’s all about providing something new and exciting to our subscribers every month. There’s no shortage of great companies with products we can share! Right now all envelopes have the same theme but they have different items. In our Vegas envelope there were different sets of poker chips. For our America theme it was varying vintage comics.”
Still don’t get the gist?
Go online, choose how many months you would like to subscribe at $4.99/month, then on some unsuspecting mid-month day, Mystery Envelope will be delivered to your door and expose you to some random, amazing things.
“We try to have multiple items that have different variations; color, issue, etcetera,” explains Lewis of product curation. “This makes it unlikely that two people will get exactly the same envelope.”
The brain trust behind the inventive concept is a trio of experienced entrepreneurs and social media hounds whose startup savvy business credentials have driven Mystery Envelope towards collaboration and partnerships solely with small startups and designers.
“We all have a great foundation in innovation and creative projects,” says Lewis. “Joe has startup experience with community building and content creation companies. Jed was employee #1 at a Google-backed venture company, and I’ve launched my own design company and have designed my own games.”
It’s the spirit of innovation and dedication that small, boutique businesses and designers represent that has made careful curation and selective partnerships an underlying precedent in the evolution and growing success of Mystery Envelope. Since owners, Joe Breed, Ben Lewis, and Jed Breed, came up with the concept in February of this year, launched the venture in April and began shipping out envelopes in May, they have had hundreds of intrigued subscribers.
“New startup businesses have so many great ideas and are not afraid to push boundaries and make things happen,” says Lewis. “Mystery Envelope is working closely with partners far and wide to find the best items, opportunities and experiences to bring to our subscribers’ doors.”
Who are the Mystery Envelope folks in the midst of working with this month? They’ve got some interesting plans with Taza Chocolate, Democratech – a design collaborative that made plantable pencils – and Leaf Cutter Designs – an eco-friendly creative studio that specializes in itty bitty, handmade, curious paper gifts.
“Curating the envelopes is the most fun part of running Mystery Envelope,” says Joe Breed. “We think we’re exposing our subscribers to things they wouldn’t be exposed to otherwise. Getting a Mystery Envelope is a small reprieve from the daily grind and we find it very rewarding to be providing that break.”
[Photo Credit: Peter Whittemore]