Create Gift Love buys a Mimaki CFL605-RT digital cutting table from CMYUK

Tony Carr – Create Gift Love with a Mimaki CFL605-RT
Tony Carr – Create Gift Love

Create Gift Love has installed a Mimaki CFL605-RT compact cutting table from CMYUK. The A2 plus sized finisher has been installed at the company’s purpose-built workshop at Ringwood in the New Forest. The purchase of the new Mimaki CFL605-RT has allowed the company to expand its services beyond b2c on-line gifting to new b2b revenue streams, smoothing out the seasonal nature of its business as it does so.

Founded and run by husband-and-wife team Emily and Tony Carr, the Create Gift Love odyssey began in 2011 when Emily decided to make handmade wooden cufflinks as Christmas presents for her family. She soon had friends asking her to make them some,  and in early 2012 she decided to start selling her wooden gifts online.

The orders started rolling in rapidly and Emily’s garden shed became a makeshift workshop. She called on the help of her husband Tony, her family and friends, and soon she was ready to leave her day job behind and focus full time on her hand-made keepsake business.

What separates Create Gift Love from other on-line gifting businesses is that it makes products to order using natural materials such as FSC-certified wood and leather, all of which can be traced back to the various joineries and tanneries from which they are sourced.

“Combining the traditional methods with the digital equipment helps us to process orders quickly and compete on a global level with other companies that are doing similar things,” says Tony.

The installation of the new Mimaki CFL605-RT has allowed the company to broaden its services beyond gifting and manage the seasonal fluctuations typical of this industry.  Its purchase was driven by the company’s need to service a new revenue stream – the production of UV printed asset tags.

“One of our customers approached us and asked if we could produce asset tags. While we have Mimaki printers in-house, we didn’t have a suitable cutting solution, but by taking on this work and investing in the cutter meant that we could feed our business through the quieter times. Taking on additional commercial applications allows us to retain as many staff as we can,” says Tony.

That said, the CFL605-RT  is being utilised for the gifting side of the business. “We use it for cutting leather samples and cutting adhesive for the backs of components, which we adhere to cork and wood,” says Tony.  

Mimaki CFL605-RT

The Mimaki CFL605-RT is a compact flatbed cutting plotter that offers a wide range of cutting and creasing functions, and as such is a perfect workmate to produce packaging, prototyping, and short-run production.

It offers a host of tools including an eccentric cutter for coated packaging board, tangential cutter for thicker boards and reciprocating cutter for soft foam and board up to 10mm thick. It also offers a pen tool for creating line drawings, as well as a creasing tool for creating folding lines.

It comes with a built-in vacuum unit that secures material during cutting and a downforce cutting pressure of up to 1,500g. A working cutting bed of 610mm x 510mm, it was the cutter’s footprint and the Mimaki brand that made it a stand-out product for Tony and Emily.

“We went for this cutter because of its compact footprint, we don’t work with large sized materials.  We already have Mimaki printers in-house, so we’re used to the software. As a business we don’t want to introduce too many different types of hardware and software to the workflow,” explains Tony.

CMYUK relationship

The business has a long-standing relationship with CMYUK Sales Manager, Chris Martin. “We’ve always found him really easy to get on with. He understands what our business is all about and introduces us to solutions that he thinks would help us. When we had the potential to win this new work, we went to him and asked what he would recommend. We visited the CMYUK showroom in Shrewsbury, which is really impressive and was struck with how engaged everyone was. The calibre of people that work at CMYUK is very high – there’s lots of knowledge and experience. Chris has put us in touch with various different people, and it’s these types of connections that can really transform a business,” says Tony.  

Into the future

The business will continue to grow its b2c on-line gifting activity, but alongside this will be looking to further capitalise on additional b2b opportunities.  Says Tony, “We’re open to working with other like-minded companies to help put British Industry back on the map. We’re proud to be part of a small resurgence, and if we can encourage anyone else to start bringing manufacturing back in the UK, that’s something we’d like to be associated with.”

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