Did you ever have an idea for a project you were saving for something really special? You know, the one you keep tucked away for just the right circumstances. For me it was the pencil box. Looking back, I definitely under estimated a few things about the project. My timeline was way off. And honestly, the production skills required for a packaging project are different than four-color offset printing. But if there’s one thing I know for sure, the only way you grow is by challenging yourself. So I dove in, head first. This post is all about the process for producing the Topography Inspired Journal & Pencil Box Set – the good, the bad and the ugly.
When we first saw the Craft Beer Branding Guide by the guys at CODO Design, we knew it was one for our keeper file. Born out of the website bearing its name, CODO teamed up with our pals at Neenah to produce a print version in pocket guide format. While the subject may be about craft beer, the strategy behind branding craft beer can be applied to many verticals. Especially those who have a physical product as part of their business. We shared the piece in the spring issue of The Parcel, it was an instant subscriber favorite. So we partnered up with our friends at AIGA to bring the team from CODO to Cleveland to share a bit about their business, their work and their love of craft beer and branding. It was a packed house at Market Garden Brewery in Cleveland for Craft Beer Branding with CODO Design & AIGA. Cody and Isaac dug deep and shared some really great insights into how they doubled down on a niche market to take their design firm national.
It’s no secret we’re big fans of the National Stationery Show. So when our friends at Legion Paper asked if Parse & Parcel would like to participate in this year’s promotion, we jumped at the chance. Last year was the first time we partnered with them on the promo and had a blast with it. For this year’s promo, Show Us Your Money, participants got to create their own money to help celebrate the occasion.
Most people think great design is the key to producing amazing print.
Great design is only half the battle. In my opinion, the reason many print projects fail isn’t because of the design. It’s because of a lack of detail.
Designers who are known for creating amazing print design, are involved in every aspect of the process – from concept through to production. And that includes specifying and sometimes even sourcing the paper.
For some of you, this may seem like a no brainer. But I’d ask you, how often are you settling for the printer’s house sheet on your work? Be honest. When was the last time you actually had work produced on the paper you envisioned using and specified for the job?
You can blame it on a lack of budget, availability issues, or a tight deadline. Those are just excuses. Every print project faces those same challenges.
The truly memorable, award winning work excels not in spite of, but because of those challenges.
With one new brewery opening every day, craft beer has to be one of the hottest markets for design. From logo design to website to product packaging, each element plays an important role in the success of any startup. And craft beer is no different. But the key to standing out in a crowded market comes down to one important aspect, branding. To insure success, a new brewery must define critical elements like its core values, messaging and positioning. But knowing how to do it all can be overwhelming for any startup. Luckily there’s this great new resource, the Craft Beer Branding Guide from CODO Design & Neenah Packaging.
What form of media does the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences rely on to welcome new members to the club? Print, of course. And why not? After all print has been proven to form some of the most personal, intimate connections with its audience. The team at Design Army created an experience around becoming a new member to this elite group. See how Design Army used the power of print and packaging to create a special experience for each new member.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – packaging design is all about the details. It has to be, especially when it’s geared towards the B2C market. The whole point is to get noticed enough that the consumer actually picks up the product. It’s not enough to merely have an attractive color palette and a standout logo mark – while those are critical elements of branding, they’re table-stakes in the world of packaging design. If you really want a product to get noticed, one needs to create an experience filled with excitement and the promise of delight for the buyer/recipient. And that’s exactly how I felt from the moment I first laid eyes on the Wondermade packaging.
For Parse & Parcel, 2016 was a year filled with inspiration, experimentation, collaboration – and change.
We hosted three events in the sample studio, complete with three large-scale paper installations. Added a new intern to our team. We traveled back and forth to NYC, first to judge the Louie Awards, then later for the National Stationery Show. Connected with design and paper peeps in Atlanta for How Design Live. We got to be a sponsor for AIGA’s Get Out the Vote campaign. We revamped the delivery for our flagship product, The Parcel – shipping four times a year (winter, spring, summer, fall). Learned all about digital metallic inks, tried our hands at letterpress and wrote articles for some of our fave online, and print, publications.
You would think this would be enough to do for one year but not quite…
Image via Studio of Christine Wisnieski
Starting a business is hard. Really hard. I can’t tell you the countless hours I’ve spent developing the concept behind Parse & Parcel. There are so many details and a ton of planning involved. And no matter how much you plan, things are always changing. The tough part is how to plan for change without knowing exactly how things will change. This is a problem every business faces, but it’s especially difficult when you’ve got a physical product and you’re trying to find the perfect packaging solution – and you’re a start-up.
Get the Free Guide with our Top Tips for Creating Memorable Packaging
I have a thing for little blue boxes.
Of course, the ubiquitous blue box of Tiffany & Co. makes me swoon. I’ve saved every one I’ve ever gotten. Every. Single. One. (Which is currently four, btw).
Every once in a while I’ll peek inside the drawer I stash them in for safe keeping. Just looking at them makes me feel all fuzzy inside.
But this isn’t anything unusual.