My name is Christian, I'm living at Vienna, Austria's capital. My other hobbies are gardening, photographing, listening to music (Funk and Jazz) and playing cards (Tarock). I stored all my CDs and LPs in MP3 format to one single hard drive containing now about 8000 titles, selecting music is very fast now. I almost can't pass by a coffee shop or bar without a short drop in to study the location. Furthermore I'm interested in modern architecture and designers of furniture, shoes and fashion. Since I am living for many years in an own house I became as well a keen plumber, electrician, tiler, bricklayer and painter.

At the age of 14 I started already collecting empty cigarette packs, when I was 16 I changed to single cigarettes which I glued on wooden plates until I got myself a parrot who enjoyed destroying them whenever he was out of his cage and unobserved. After several years of travelling along all 5 continents for business reasons I remembered my old hobby. I thought colleting cigarette packs might be a good opportunity to combine having a souvenir from each country and having a hobby about something that always interested me. Today many cigarettes have printings on the cellophane which covers them and if you open the package, you remove parts of it. So the decision was quickly made, I will collect full (unopened) packs only. Soon the collection raised to dimensions of several cubic meters and it became really difficult to locate a specific pack for e.g. compare reasons. At this stage my wife Manuela convinced me to organize a store system that makes it easy to find packs again and protects them as well. She procured hundreds of Tupperware boxes, numbered them, and filled all cigarette packs into them. In the meantime I created and maintained an Excel table with the pack names, URLs of the pictures and the box numbers. It took us several weekends to complete this work and to be honest without my wifes ambition chaos would still rule my collection. I believe that Im a very lucky guy to have a wife which is interested in my hobby and helps me with it wherever she can.

My job as a software engineer leaded me already into a lot of different countries where I always use the opportunity to buy a few new cigarette packs for my collection. In total I spent already 7 years of my life in foreign countries (worth mentioning are 2 years in Paris, 1.5 years in Mexico City, 1 year in Brussels, 1 year in Johannesburg). That's how I got most of my collection before publishing my collection at the internet. With the internet this changed rapidly. These days most of my new packs are coming from other collectors around the globe by exchanging packs with them. But the best thing about internet is to get to know a lot of new friends which share this hobby. By exchanging informations with them you learn within a few years more than you possibly could by searching and reading specialized literature for your whole life.

Here you can see the physic collection. All packs are stored in airtight boxes to protect them against humidity and any kind of insect. Furthermore the whole room has no direct sunlight to protect the colours of the packs.

These are the drawers with the reservations for other collectors. Usually exchange takes place once the amount of reserved packs has reached a reasonable quantity to save postage fee.

These are the drawers with the full doubles which are offered at my page waiting for requests from other collectors.

And finally the empty packs which I collect for collectors of empty packs.

 

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christian@zigsam.at
Christian Kranich
Heuberggasse 35
A-1170 Vienna
Austria