Brown paper branding

Wigberto Serpa. Tanya Cheeks. Ty-Shonn Evans. These are all names stamped on the bottom of brown paper bags I get at restaurants and retail shops. It’s become a habit of mine to look under my bag and find the name of the person who made it, so I can wonder about what else they do or find a match for a name I already know.

I don’t know what the manufacturer had in mind, but the personal moniker is a cool touch of humanity that reminds me real people are making this stuff. I’ve Googled the bag makers and learned a little about them. (If you look up “Wigberto Serpa,” you’ll see I’m not the only person who’s interested in his name.

Here’s a way to take the paper-bag name game to a new level. Check out the Brown Paper Bag Project, which crowdsources pictures, names, ink color and dates of paper-bag discoveries and lets visitors vote and comment on each find. From the look of the voting stats, this site isn’t getting nearly the traffic it deserves … I know I’m going to start uploading my favorite bags to the site!

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