Yet another perfume metaphor: scent as a way to lure the opposite sex. And Curiosity Inc.’s package for Issey Miyake suggests a fishing bobber; men will fall hook, line and sinker. Designers chose a new material called pcta Waterclear, which has a softer and warmer feel than glass, without sacrificing transparency and brightness. It houses a complicated internal system, which contains and dispenses the perfume through an unusual take on the conventional spray atomizer. A plastic cap at the base of the spherical bottle keeps it upright, but after it’s removed, a protective sleeve pops up to cover the spray nozzle. Although Sikora particularly liked the innovative use of materials in the bottle, he also noted that the corrugated carton that slips inside an outer box was at aesthetic odds with the overall package.
client/company Beaute Prestige International, Paris
consultant design Curiosity Inc., Tokyo: Gwenael Nicolas, principal
materials/fabrication PCTA Waterclear
hardware/ software Apple Power Mac G4
gkd metal fabrics sample system
For years, gkd, a German company specializing in woven steel fabrics, had marketed its products for such industrial applications as conveyor belts and filtration systems. When it recognized that its cable-and-wire compositions had equal appeal as architectural elements, the company recruited Designframe to develop a comprehensive marketing program, including corporate identity and product sampling.
The packaging was developed to showcase the transparent nature of gkd’s metal fabrics to architects, who often use the unique materials to filter daylight. What’s more, the package encapsulates the raw steel edges of the product, which would otherwise scratch customers’ fingers and nice wood conference tables. Designframe spec’ed raw chipboard, adorned only with adhesive labels offset-printed in two colors, as a deliberate foil for the polished product inside. Although he would have liked to see labeling on the spines of each package, Sikora cited the entry’s “simple, clarified packaging and minimal graphics.”
client/company GKD, Cambridge, Md.
consultant design Designframe, New York: Michael McGinn, principal and creative director; Kazuo Akiyama, John Balestrieri, Agnes de Bethune, Kate Mulligan, Jim Sebastian, James Spahr, designers
materials/fabrication woven stainless-steel product inserts, offset-printed cardboard packaging
Sure, most perfumes overtly promise success in attracting the opposite sex. This one comes with full-blown instructions. The perfume container itself, a stock glass bottle, is hardly remarkable. What’s notable, however, is the outer packaging: a book, titled Unavailable, with cardboard pages that open to reveal the bottle nested inside a die-cut window. A satire of women’s self-help books, the copy reads like a user’s manual forboth Unavailable, the perfume, and Unavailable, the philosophy. It suggests that a woman dab the scent on a man’s sheets, towels and shirt collars, so she can stay on his mind while she’s “unavailably away.” And the book offers 15 ways a woman can make herself appealingly unavailable: “As an Unavailable woman, you must remember: A truly smart woman is careful about how quickly she reveals how smart she truly is.”
The package’s unassuming aesthetic is precisely the point: Like the Unavailable woman, it plays hard to get. “The concept is the big hero: it shadows the design,” Sikora said. “It’s meant to be slightly unappealing. A brilliant execution.”
client/company Blue Q, Pittsfield, Mass.
consultant design Sagmeister Inc., New York: Stefan Sagmeister, art director and designer; Hjalti Karlsson, designer; Karen Salmansohn, copy and concept
materials/fabrication screen-printed stock glass bottle, offset-printed cardboard book
hardware/ software Apple Mac 9500, Adobe Illustrator
tdk stackable cd cases
Charged with creating an alternative to the jewel case, the ideo team focused on developing a cd packaging method that would be less space- and material-consuming than the current model. Because cds only need to be protected on the back side, the designers chose to make a one-sided case. Like the inside of the conventional jewel case, this new package uses a center “hub” to secure the cd.
But that’s where the similarities end. ideo’s iteration uses translucent colored plastic molded into a biomorphic shape that, when stacked, resembles a multi-petaled flower. The package reveals the face of each cd, so the user can instantly see the disc’s content. This solution is ideal for audiophiles with extensive collections amassed on bookshelves: When stacked, 50 cds in the tdk case take up only slightly more room than 50 discs alone. Users can write the name of the cd on the “petals,” and multiple color options allow for easy categorization. And the integrated hook allows for convenient display
client/company TDK Electronics Corp., Port Washington, N.Y.
consultant design IDEO, Palo Alto, Calif: Tim Brown, principal; Blaise Bertrand, Andrzej Scoskiewicz, Roby Stancel, designers
materials/fabrication injection-molded plastic
hardware/ software Adobe Photoshop, Pro/ENGINEER
tazo tins + infuser top
“Finally!” exclaimed Giasullo. “A sustainable product that addresses the nuisance of loose-leaf tea.”
Sandstrom Design’s package ingeniously incorporates an infuser-a removable top section with handles that flip down to rest on the rim of a teacup-suspending the stainless-steel bowl into the cup. The consumer simply scatters loose tea into the perforated infuser, then pours steaming-hot water over the leaves to brew a single serving. A separate cap can be used to catch drips and hold the infuser when the tea has finished steeping.
Function aside, the package has the feel of a portable canister that one might take on an adventure to some exotic locale. “Right now, wouldn’t you rather be sitting on a beach in Brazil watching the sun go down?” asks the copy. To be sure. Sandstrom’s package, with its khaki-colored iconic labeling, makes it easy to envision the trip.
client/company Tazo, Portland, Ore.
consultant design Sandstrom Design, Portland, Ore.: Steve Sandstrom, principal
materials/fabrication stainless-steel lid
hardware/ software Apple Power Mac G4, Adobe Illustrator 8.0