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Paperchase are a large stationery store which sell a wide range of different things. Their shops are noticeably different as they are bright and colour-full, well lit and are easily shoppable.
This review is based on the Guildford store!
***WHAT DO THEY SELL?*** Paperchase sell a wide range of items including greeting cards, art papers and materials, stationery, gift packaging, gifts and novelty items. They do sell some strange bits including coloured devil ducks and pirate plasters and other novelty items. They also have a very large range of Christmas items such as cards, gifts, decorations and greeting cards. As well as Christmas they all sell items for Mother's, Fathers and Valentines day.
***THE CARDS*** Paperchase sell a large range of cards and they are displayed in their relevant section. At the front of the store will be the current season such as Xmas or Valentine cards, then their own brand cards which follow which are a very reasonable price and they always have a brilliant selection for adults and for children. The own brand cards normally start from about £1.35 each. They also have a humour, art, photographic and children's section. Towards the back of the store following on from the general birthday cards you will find occasions such as Engagement, Wedding, New Baby, Good Luck, New Job, Congratulations, Anniversary Sympathy and age cards. Their age cards start for age 1 and go up to age 100!
All the cards are sealed in their own plastic bags, which is great as it avoids them getting dirty and also avoids missing envelopes, how-ever this is not great for the environment! I will how-ever point out that on the back of some of their cards it will give you some information whether the card they sued has been recycled and if the bag they sued for the card is bio-degradable or not!
***ART PAPERS AND MATERIAL*** In some selected stores, they have a paper section at the back of the store and they sell a large selection of individual sheets of paper with different designs and patterns on them. It does work out quite expensive if you need to buy a lot of this paper though. They also sell origami paper, pencil sets, card-making and embellishment packs, felt sheets, gems, glitter and computer paper in different colours.
***STATIONERY*** Paperchase sell a large range of stationery items such as notebooks and diaries, pencil cases and photo-albums, carry cases and folders, storage boxes, magazine files, letter sets, pencils, mouse-mats, erasers, journals, guestbook's, invitations and probably more! Depending on what their current range/promotion is depends on what designs they may have in these items. Their prices are quite reasonable and the stationery is of good quality and is made very well.
***GIFT PACKAGING*** This includes sheets of wrapping paper, gift boxes, gift bags, gift tags and tissue. They always seem to have a large range of designs and sizes of the gift bags and boxes. The sheets of paper can start from £0.85 for plain coloured sheets and can go up to £2.00 for hand-made sheets. I find that the sheets of tissue are expensive and you have to buy them in packs of 3, 5 of 10 and its costs about £2.00. You can get tissue cheaper from some-where else. The gift boxes are very sturdy and are of brilliant quality and I have often bought these to use as storage boxes as they have some beautiful designs.
***GIFTS*** They have a large range of gifts including Photo frames, Bags, jewellery boxes, purses, key rings, umbrellas, mugs, drinking bottles, badges, passport holders, soft toys, playing cards, magnets, sticker and more! The gifts obviously range in price, but most of the items are good value and also good quality. They have a gorgeous range of photo-frames in a range of different prices.
***FILOFAX*** For those of you have a filo-fax and never know where to get inserts for them you can buy them at paper chase along with pens and pencils to fit your filo-fax. These are very pricey but as these are a brand name people don't mind spending money on these items.
***UNDER-GLASS*** Under-glass is another word for the items you will always see in the lock-up glass display cabinet which is usually situated next to the till. In here they have more expensive items such as a Lamy and Space Pens, Chrome key-rings and cufflinks, small travel clocks and travel games and other gifts. They also have an expensive stationery range which is made from leather and includes note-books, journals and photo-albums. All these items come boxed!
***SEASONAL ITEMS*** Paperchase sell seasonal items such as mother's day gifts including mugs, tea-towels, tea-pots and other item such as plates and bath sets. Easter Items include those little yellow chicks (everyone should know what I mean), wind up rabbits/eggs decorations and more. Valentines they sell things such as Heart key-rings, cuddly bears and other items. Christmas is obviously their biggest season and they sell Crackers, Napkins, Christmas trees, Decorations, Craft items, Christmas lights and plenty more to choose from.
***OTHER ITEMS*** Paperchase also have a novelty section and they sell things like pirate, duck, egg & bacon and unicorn plasters. Wind up racing grannies and grandads, photo glitter domes, wind up toys, magnets, stickers and other strange items which you wouldn't think to look for in this type of shop.
***CUSTOMER SERVICE/THE SHOP*** Staff always seem friendly and pleasant and they are very helpful. They will wrap breakable/delicate items in tissue and will remove any prices from any items if you wish. If you are looking for a specific item they will also try to get hold of it for you and contact you when they have the item in stock.
The shop always looks clean and tidy and its easy to shop around in. It doesn't feel cluttered and it feels quite spacious and it always feel like a warm, pleasant atmosphere. They tend to display a lot of the items on table and sometimes this isn't a good idea as they very easily get knocked over and items are more than likely to break. How-ever they don't make you pay for the item.
At Christmas this shop gets extremely busy, I know this because I used to work for them! At Christmas you can barely move in the shop and you will have queues of about 10-20 people going down towards the back of the store. How-ever a lot of stores have temporary tills installed over the Christmas period to ensure customers get served faster and leave the shop happy.
I would definitely say browse in this store and even if you don't intend to buy guaranteed you will walk out with something!