I don’t talk much about the logistical side of Lost Art Press because it’s not woodworking. And I try to stick to woodworking as much as possible.
But occasionally, it’s necessary to drop the curtain and acknowledge a milestone.
About six years ago, John and I filled every order from our houses. I had our order processing computer propped on a folding table, and I’d put my feet on the litter box as I manually printed out every label for every order. John and his family did the same thing (without the litter box – John has dogs).
It was a good kind of drudgery. John and I now know enough about order systems and customer service that we’re picky about how our boxes are packed and our customers are treated.
This year, John devoted a ton of his time to find a new fulfillment service for Lost Art Press and Crucible Tool that makes everything better for you and us. The service is TF Fulfillment, and it’s northwest of Indianapolis in an area that is a hotbed of services such as this.
What’s in this for you? The warehouse is climate controlled and humidity controlled, so your books will arrive without having absorbed excess moisture. (We’re also starting to shrinkwrap all of our titles to help control moisture. We’re not wild about the extra plastic and extra expense, but it’s the best way to protect our goods.)
Also, TF Fulfillment is far more automated and modern than our previous efforts. So you are less likely to get a shipment with the wrong things in the box. One person picks the books. A second person checks their work. Also, we have the same two people working on our orders every day. So they know the difference between “To Make as Perfectly as Possible” and “With All the Precision Possible.”
Also, TF does a great job of packing boxes. If you’ve received a box from us in the last couple months you might have noticed. Good packaging means fewer damaged books.
I also think it’s important to say this on occasion: I couldn’t do this without John. We’re equal partners in Lost Art Press, and we both do difficult jobs that we wouldn’t wish on other people. I get a lot of credit because my name is at the bottom of most of these blog posts, but this business wouldn’t be successful without the both of us.
OK, back to woodworking.
— Christopher Schwarz