Stranger & Stranger, you’ve outdone yourselves once again. Following their Holiday Spirits of the past few years, “to celebrate the year we broke out of our alcohol comfort zone and designed premium olive oils, fine foods, luxury luggage, and just plain crazy new stuff, we teamed up with the amazing Dan & Dave to create this, our Ultimate Deck.” And broke out of their alcohol they did! Previously, anyone who asked me for suggestions on alcohol packaging, i undoubtedly told them, Stranger & Stranger! Well it sounds like it has been quite the year for the incredible design group… and these cards (no surprise) are STUNNING, down to the tiniest of details! From the matte black magnetic box… to the velvety pouches… to the festive ambigram… to the seal on the deck… to the gilded edges of the deck… to the artwork adorning each card… it’s a magnificent deck of cards! And the quality is incredible, as are all Dan & Dave cards (like the awesome Fulton’s Clip Joint Playing Cards we wrote about previously)… take a peek at all the incredible details of Stranger & Stranger’s Ultimate Deck on the next page!
Entries tagged with: packaging
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There seems to be a trend in iconic packaging being creatively repurposed for treats in the canine space… Thanks to Bucky, the NOTpuppy, we’ve been getting caught up fast in the space, and have come across some strange products… Firstly, picture perfume/lipgloss rollers… and deodorant roller balls? Well imagine that - only it’s a low cal liquid treat that your dog (or cat) can lick, and only 1 calorie in every 10 licks! That is PetSafe’s Lickety Stik! Now imagine those large gluesticks or sunblock sticks… some even have a string attached to go around your neck? Only instead of smearing it on… you let your dog lick it? That is Leanlix! The big form anyhow… the mini Littlelix - look just like Lip Smackers in their multi-flavored packs… the same packaging as the usual lip balms. These say 3 licks are 0 calories! And then there’s also the HumanGear GoToob (my favorite travel toiletry container) which doubles as a Paww Treat Toob…
Strange as they are, we were far too curious… so take a peek for more packaging details on the next page, as well as Bucky’s responses!
Just spotted this Built NY Origami Wine Tote over at Crate and Barrel. “Its unique folds aren’t just visually-appealing—they actually help safeguard your bottle from bumps in the road. This wine carrier also compresses flat and secures with handle for compact storage. Each Origami Wine Tote comes with a to/from tag so it needs no wrapping to make a great presentation.” It reminds me of the Veuve Clicquot Clicq’Up Origami Ice Bucket that collapses so nicely… This tote comes in Wine Tote and Champagne Tote - the perfect reusable gift bag! See more pics on the next page…
From kickstarter to my mail box! My Seed Money by Leafcutter Designs just showed up today, and they are even cuter than expected. Lovely attention to detail with the packaging and coin faces. Basically, they had custom pressed paper filled with seeds, then letterpressed and cut out as coins! So you can tip with them, share them with friends, pop them in pots and poof! Plants!
As they describe it, “Seed Money looks like the real thing - pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters - but is far more valuable. Use it to solicit surprise and smiles from friends and strangers alike, and then tuck these paper coins in soil to grow colorful flowers and delicious vegetables. It’s tender for tending! Seed Money is hand-illustrated and letterpress printed in Nebraska on thick custom papers embedded with seeds. Available in rolls for sharing and spreading the wealth, these lightweight, whimsical - and practical - coins will slide easily into a purse or pocket.”
As for what grows from them - Pennies: Mix of wildflowers including Black-Eyed Susan, Spurred Snapdragon, Shirley Poppy, White Tarrow, and Sweet Alyssum. Nickels: Herbs including oregano, dill, parsley, basil, chive, thyme, and sage Dimes: Root crops including carrot, parsnip, and turnip. Quarters: Salad greens including bibb, Black Simpson, Salad Bowl Red, radicchio, and endive. And the special Buffalo Nickels: Bee Balm (aka Lemon Mint).
See all the fun details (including some “special” pennies) on the next page!
Duncan Shotton has taken my breathe away - again. Remember the adorable little Revive: Denzel i shot on the bentley last year? Well a magical package just arrived from Tokyo! Duncan (while at the Fab Cafe - the tokyo cafe with a laser cutter we had on NOTCOT.org #46688) designed and laser cut the most incredible magnetic camera shaped gift box (a one of a kind) for NOTCOT containing his Cloud Key Holder… and even the details in the corrugated cardboard box exterior and the structure keeping the camera well protected are all laser cut. Stunning attention to detail housing a fun magnetic key holder! You have to see all the details on the next page!
Absolut Tune is the latest from Absolut… a sparkling fusion of Absolut vodka and crisp white wine. While i’ve only just started experimenting with this unique combination… the packaging is definitely noteworthy. Quite a sidestep from the iconic Absolut bottle shape this champagne like bottle has a very Tord Boontje-esque double layered, flowery pattern to it… the caged cork glass bottle has two layers of plastic on it - one with a gold on blue, and the top layer with a matte/pearly white lined with gold that peels back ever so dramatically. Take a peek at the packaging details (and a few drink recipes) on the next page!
P.S. See if you can find the gears, fish, tentacles, peacock feathers and more tucked away in the intricate designs!
Unbelievably soft. We just wandered in to Marine Layer in Hayes Valley in SF today and like the sign says “Get Grabby. Stop! And feel the fabric.” - we did. And it is SO SOFT. And coming from from a hot, sunny LA and landing in a super foggy/misty SF, the name couldn’t be more appropriate! And again - seriously - they are ridiculously soft! Also amazing about them - “every step of our production process occurs in California. This minimizes our environmental footprint and supports 3 American factories that have been in business for over 25 years.” and “Our custom fabric is a blend of two yarns, Pima Cotton and MicroModal, produced by Lenzig AG. Modal is a bio-based fabric that comes from recycled Beech Wood.” Everything is made locally - and you can read about the whole process. They also have such an adorable store (the vintage shufflepuck table in the center, chalk board logo, fun rope lamps) and really cute bags! As well as a vintage VW VAN! Take a peek inside Marine Layer (cell phone pics since i didn’t expect to be shooting it!) on the next page…
Adorable! Papafoxtrot Space Fleet! With gorgeous packaging too! Designed for Papafoxtrot by Postlerferguson - “We have selected the 5 most iconic unmanned spacecraft circling the earth and transformed them into Papafoxtrot`s iconic design language which we developed with our series of wooden cargo vessels a year ago. From an interplanetary garbage collection to a future commercial spacebus to Mars these amazing machines are making the world go round day and night. The satellites are made out of maple as well as laser etched stainless steel parts with polished natural wood, matte white and glossy red finish.” Take a peek at Spektr-R, GEOTAIL, Cygnus, Dragon, and ORS-1 on the next page…
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On fun and unexpected surprises, a Reebok FitList Box just arrived in the mail! For the launch of the Reebok FitList App on Spotify, the folks at DeepLocal created limited edition sneaker cases containing portable stereo speakers and sound reactive LED lights that glow in reaction to music, ambient sound, and even touch. (It’s oddly mesmerizing to tap the case and watch it light up and fade!) Most impressive is the fun video they created with athletes working out alongside a wall of these LED shoe boxes, and as they jump and run and work out. They’ve created 100 limited edition Reebok FitList boxes holding a pair of RealFlex Transition 2.0 shoes featuring an exclusive colorway (black with red soles!) just for the occasion. See the video, making of, and a peek inside the actual Reebok FitList Box and what powers it on the next page!
While exploring Tent London today ~ we were instantly smitten with Budapest designer, Molnár Réka’s Moringa line of fun nature inspired kitchen goods. First drawn in by the adorable Fox Tea Towel, which actually makes use of the way a tea towel naturally hangs… and then won over by the color changing mugs!!! The Mushrooms grow and the rain drops disappear when you add a hot drink! And the leaves and bushes disappear to reveal birds and bunnies and more!
Since we unfortunately couldn’t see these mugs in action while at the fair - we had to buy them and bring them home! And they are so amusingly magical in person, we made some videos (to go with the many other detail shots and booth shots!) for you to check out on the next page!
While at Selfridges early this week, we encountered these stunning limited edition Gordon’s Gin Ten Green Bottles designed by Conran ~ there will be 1 million bottles, available throughout the UK from October at the standard retail price and an additional 200 special edition bottles, presented in hand-stitched fabric wraps and presentation boxes along with an A3 print available exclusively at Selfridges. Then tonight, we found ourselves at the Conran Shop’s “village fête” of a celebration party for the collaboration - complete with a look behind the designs, fun silly games and activities set up throughout the store, and Gordon’s Gin cocktails of course! It’s fun to see that each of the 10 patterns (some more sneakily than others) incorporates it’s number into the design… take a peek on the next page at the event, the bottles, the inspiration… and more!
The latest from London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw.
We love seeing the use of antiquarian-inspired images that reference natural history engravings; and pairing these designs with packaging seems to be on the rise (e.g. recent release of Zubrowka’s beautiful illustrated packaging). So we were very excited to see the latest from Stranger & Stranger, the team behind the recently featured wine packaging as they created this stunning packaging for The Entertainer, a limited edition blended Scotch whisky from Compass Box.
Taking inspiration (and flavor combinations) from the turn of the 20th century, the beautiful packaging created in collaboration with London artist Peter Blake, takes a similarly beautiful and quirky antiquarian approach and includes so many details we love. It’s got London architecture, complex geometry, and all sorts of wild creatures from moths and butterflies to lionfish and octopi! The limited edition packaging and whisky are extremely limited, but currently still available at Selfridges (and online here). More photos of this gorgeous packaging on the next page!
One of my favorite italian indulgences is the Ferrero Pocket Coffee! Delicious chocolatiness filled with espresso! And apparently they are only produced/available November through April? They are surprisingly hard to find in LA, but sometimes they are at Monsiuer Marcel. Well running around Italy the last few weeks ~ and happening upon these Pocket Espresso To GO packs while stopping at a gas station outside of Florence with Josh Rubin, and when grabbing a drink we also grabbed these! (Thanks, Josh!)
They are like SUPER MINI juice boxes for adults. Only instead of juice they are filled with a chocolatey espresso. And it’s complete with a super mini straw and a Pierce Here/Forare Qui spot! Ms Adventures In Italy points out that these are the SUMMER variation of the Pocket Coffees ~ i suppose it makes sense that with the chocolate mixed in, you don’t have to worry about them melting in the heat? Too adorable and quite delicious - take a peek at Pocket Espresso To GO up close on the next page!
Leave it to our friends at Stranger & Stranger to take wine to a whole new level of elegant playfulness ~ making us lust after the life the bottle teases at before we even figure out what type of wine it is. Remember last Christmas’s No. 13 they sent out? It seems that the idea for this line of Truett Hurst wines for Safeway packaged by Stranger & Stranger took its inspiration from No. 13! Kevin Shaw, the founder and Creative Director, says “ The added real estate that the over sleeve gives us has allowed us to engage with people in a way that a tiny back label never can. Everyone just wants to pick up and read these packs.” Apparently “Stranger identified 22 niches and buying occasions that might benefit from enhanced packaging and developed a patented bottle sleeve that contains everything from quotes to recipes.” I had no idea you could patent the bottle sleeve resembling the brown paper bag look of the prohibition era ~ but it will be intriguing to see how this wine packaging shift infiltrates other packaging designs as we wander the aisles at the market! See more bottles and lots of close ups on the next page!
The Israeli Pavilion of the Venice Architecture Biennale was turned into a fully functioning capitalist “concept shop” filled with cheeky goods you can actually purchase. As they state in the catalog “In this exhibition, one enters a concept store, selling custom-made objects that relate to specific events in the relationship between the United States and Israel. The store embodies a retail experience that is in itself a product of American influences, prompting the public to participate in a live installation. Upon ascending to the upper level, one finds that the store’s objects become a field of historical, cultural, and economic background events in which four architectural phenomena are immersed.” You can find out more about their project through their twitter and tumblr. The products themselves are amusingly designed, packaged and presented in the store and upstairs presentation ~ take a peek at the products, displays and catalog on the next page.
Firstly, let me just put it out there that i’m no runner. I’ve tried a few times, still trying to get in to it… and i’ve been loving the Nike Frees for a while now. When Skora’s designer, Richard Kuchinsky, reached out to me, i wasn’t sure i was the right person to try out their new shoes… then he told me they had amazing packaging, and i was hooked. What’s the story behind this new Portland based minimal running shoe line? “At SKORA, we look at things differently. We believe that running shoes should be built to encourage running performance that is as biomechanically correct as possible, with minimal interference. Our footwear lets people run naturally. Run Real is our philosophy and we stand by it.” Beyond the way these new running shoes help your running performance, there are a lot of beautiful patterns in the packaging and on the shoes, as well as nice clean branding! Check out the unboxing and a peek at all the details of the women’s Skora Base and Form running shoes on the next page.
NOTCOT SPECIAL from FLOS! Enter NOTCOT at checkout to receive 10% off of the D’E-Light Table Lamp by FLOS exclusively at Lumens.com. Limited to the first 10 NOTCOT readers.
Perhaps the ultimate iPhone/iPad charger accessory for your desk or bedside table… the Flos D’E-Light by Philippe Starck! In addition to its chrome finish, this minimalist, energy efficient LED desk light is now in an awesome matte black version exclusive to Lumens! Flos and Lumens were kind enough to send one over for us to check out, and it looks and feels even better in person! (Though somehow in my head, i imagined it larger than it is!) The matte finish feels like a soft touch rubber, and the simple touch sensor on the side of the light glows a subtle orange… there are three states it toggles through, 100% brightness, 50% brightness, and off. Within the box are even plug adapters for multiple countries (including US, Europe, UK). Take a peek on the next page at the full unboxing as well as a look at all of the details!
The latest from London-based editor, Justine Aw.
Here’s a peek inside a gift pack we received from Zubrowka decorated with the beautiful illustrations of Kristjana S Williams. I was intrigued by the “Bison Grass Vodka”, a rye vodka with a herbaceous taste. The box contained not only a bottle of Zubrowka, but also an apple corer, three pink lady apples (lovingly wrapped in illustrated protective tissue paper) and a test tube of the aromatic grass that grows in the mysterious Bialowieza Forest in north-east Poland. It is this grass that gives the vodka a slightly organic smell and taste and the grasses in the test tube are aromatic cocktail decorations that have a hint of almond or vanilla as well as grass scent. While the traditional Polish way to drink the vodka is neat on ice, it was definitely complimented by apple juice! More photos on the next page.
Another Dwell On Design discovery ~ love the packaging of COATT’s Morse Code Jewelry. While a little cryptic to translate on the fly (it’s hard to tell where one letter ends and the next begins!) ~ the minimal dot and dash beads in gold fill, gold, or silver on silk cord make for lovely necklaces and bracelets which are a beautifully simple gift for any occasion. And the use of Wasara disposable paper plates/etc as displays are a brilliant idea! See it all on the next page!
On unexpected deliciousness with awesome packaging ~ you have to try Spodee! Packaged in milk bottles and sealed with a (difficult to open!) cork ~ this mulled wine/moonshine/hooch concoction is delicious on its own or mixed with just about anything (they have a variety of suggested recipes, all with fun pictures!)
“Spodee was a Depression era hooch that mixed up homemade country wines with garden herbs, spices and moonshine. The resulting brew was then put into whatever containers they happened to have lying around…hence, the milk bottle. It may not be fancy pants, but it sure is tasty!” Take a look at all the details on the next page!
Catching up on things while hanging out in Nashville today, i found more fun inspiration lost in my camera from Maker Faire a few weekends ago… i love their branding for the faire this year, and the fun products with the adorable robot logo on it… as well as other Maker Shed goodies to see in person!
If you’re going to be wearing a wristband for a few days in the hot sun of a music festival… the last thing you want is a plasticy bracelet (especially one that could be on too tight!) The adorable new wristbands for Bonnaroo just arrived and they are a nice compromise for their RFID readers… soft fabric, adorably fun illustrations, and only the RFID tag and the clasp are plastic. Only question now, is how it holds up to the elements… Take a peek at the details and the fun papers that came along with it on the next page!
Sucked in by a gorgeous point of sale display, then the packaging, then the scents… and before i knew it, i was cruising down highway 1 with cherry bourbon lip balm and ‘excess’ hand cream… Tokyo Milk Dark is hard to resist!
After a delicious meal with always stunning views at my favorite, Nepenthe, in Big Sur, shopping Phoenix below was a must. So when i came across the fun black and white displays with cute cotton pouches and glass tubes… i was sucked in. And then upon smelling the scents of the Tokyo Milk Dark Femme Fatale and Fate & Fortune collections, they had me. Favorites became a mix of graphics (yes, packaging can make all the difference at times) and scents… absolute favorite being the Cherry Bourbon No. 77 lip balm (just sweet enough without smelling too edible). Take a peek at it all on the next page!
The BIG Jambox from Jawbone is here! and much like its tinier predecessor, the Jambox, (which we unboxed poolside over a year ago) - if you order it from Jawbone themselves, the packaging is FAR more fun than what you’ll see in retail stores… playful graphics adorn the cardboard box vs the clear plastic cases that showcase the product in stores. So, what’s fun about the BIG Jambox vs the Jambox? As the name says, it’s bigger ~ but also has bass, 15 hours of battery life, play/pause/skip buttons, and their new LiveAudio. While we love having the little Jambox for running around and even in the bathroom to bluetooth music while in the shower… the BIG one, is perfect for the kitchen or outside in the yard… and they both make for the perfect conference call mic/speaker!
Head to the next page to see the full unboxing and a size comparison between the BIG and small!
“Officine Autodromo was founded to recapture a romantic era of motoring. It was a time of Gran Turismo when driving from city to city wasn’t just a matter of hopping onto an expressway. It meant slipping on your driving gloves for a high speed jaunt through the great roads of Europe with a powerful, sweet-sounding engine propelling you into new adventure, and maybe even a little danger. Autodromo watches and accessories draw aesthetic inspiration from the world of mid-century auto racing. Our products have a vintage feel, alloyed with a clean, uncluttered modernist design philosophy. Each new product is conceived as an artifact that might have existed in the past, but is equally at home in the world of today.”
Autodromo’s newest timepiece, the Vallelunga, is a minimal chronograph inspired by 60’s and 70’s Italian Prototype and Grand Prix tachometers. Named after the challenging road circuit outside of Rome designed by Piero Taruffi, the Vallelunga offers a dual-hand timer offset from center and date just above 6’oclock. This would be even more awesome for recording times if you were driving this beautiful Alfa or Lotus Eleven through France like their photos. The optional black or white dial comes with a brushed steel case and a perforated black leather band reminiscent of a vintage Italian steering wheel. Take a look at the beautiful details and packaging on the next page…