Wednesday 25 November 2009

Shop frontage...

The shop front gives a very important first impression of the business, which means that it needs to present the brand in a strong way. Part of this brief is to put together a basic idea of what the shop front could look like, to demonstrate how the branding elements will be used.

The research images below are of existing businesses, coffee shops mostly, that would present themselves in a similar way to Cake&Co.

1. Candy Cakes, London
This is a very bright and exuberant shop front. The colours used are those from the brand logo, and used A LOT! The green is quite overwhelming, but would really stand out on the average high street. I really like the idea of displaying the cakes in the window, but they're just out - not very hygienic!

2. Billy's Bakery, New York
This is quite a plain shop front, but it is quite homely and quaint. The colour is a pale cream, which compliments the logo really well, and allows it to stand out.

3. Primrose Bakery, London
The illustrated logo looks really great on the window. The colours are quite pale but they stand out quite well because they are totally opaque. The shop is painted yellow, which is bright and eye catching and complements the pink and white logo quite nicely, and keeps the feeling sort of light and quite pretty.

4. Maison Blanc, London
The logo is type, but quite illustrative and expressive. The design is repeated on the front of the shop, and the awning...why? That seems a bit weird, but the addition of colour is good.

5 Millies Cookies, UK wide
This is a gorgeous and bright shop design. It works really well because the simple stripes using the brand colours, but they dont overpower the shop front. The design is very modern and contemporary, but the logo has quite a retro feel. It is an odd combination, but it works because the contrast is overly strong. The brightness and pattern really makes the shop eye catching and quite unusual.

6. Hummingbird Bakery, London
This chocolate brown exterior is quite appropriate - it is very chocolaty! The name is written in a pale gold above what looks like patterned woodwork. The window display is low key but very pretty and enticing, they are showing their products and packaging, which creates an all round feel for the brand.

Tuesday 24 November 2009


I have had a look online for different types of gift bags. I am planning on designing bags made of paper, but there are other options, so I've had a look:

Clockwise from left:
1. These white bags are made from paper, but have low shine vertical silver stripes running across them. The handles are made from stiff twisted paper, which means they stand up. The silver tissue sets off the shine in the paper. Overall the design is very low key but it isn't specific to any one occasion, which makes it versatile and very commercially viable. For those who appreciate the elegant and stylish, and anyone who wants to give a gift wrap suitable for any gender.

2. These are quite interesting christmas bags. The design is not conventional but it works because of the colour combination and the aesthetics of the bag. The tissues uses the same colours as the design, which helps to give it a more christmassy feel. The illustration is a little limiting, it would mainly appeal to women, and probably those over 30. Overall the design is a bit tacky, but it will appeal to someone!

3. These purple paper bags are clearly designed for no specific occasion. The design is simple and very graphic, devoid of any type! The important thing about this design is that uses colour, and lots of it. The colour palette is quite unusual but it creates a very bold design, which makes the present look exciting.

4. This is a very thick paper bag, made with cord handles. The bag is totally plain, the colour appears to be some kind of pale gold (possibly not metallic). I realise that this design isn't exciting or special, but it is always important to have bags that are just plain so that they can be used for any occasion, and suit anybody.

5. This bag is made from thin frosted plastic. The handles are made from a double layer of the same plastic. The pattern on the bag is simple, but pretty, not really suitable for a male audience. The fact that the bag is see through means that it will require tissue paper inside to conceal the gift, this means buying an extra piece of packaging, and therefore might not appeal to the customer.

6. This think paper bag has twisted paper handles like the first set of bags. The colour is bright and bold, making it eye-catching even though there is no pattern or design. A bag like this can be reused - unlike wrapping paper which is ruined after one use. Gift bags are usually quite expensive, a bag like this wont cost as much as one with a printed design, or one that uses foiling or coatings.

Saturday 21 November 2009

Pockets & Pouches...

I have decided to per sue the pouch idea as my final-ish design for the cosmetics packaging. I have therefore been looking into products that are packaged using similar formats and materials. I have used The Die Line and Lovely Package to find these examples of pockets and pouches that are used to packaged products effectively:


Method - noted for their already sustainable packaging - have created this pouch as refill for their hand wash. They are clearly aware that the plastic bottles they currently sell their products in have more than one use in them, and providing a refill option is more eco-friendly. The full colour images denote which hand wash the refill is for; they originally had a patterned clear plastic pouch (below), but have changed it to white to make it more readable. Creating a substantial bottle and refill option would be suitable for some of the Boots Expert product range, but not all of them.


These are 'single-serving' packages which are easy to dispense and essentially leave no wasted packaging. The tear off tops make the product easy to dispense quickly, rather than cutting. The shape is also appealing and an ergonomically suitable shape for holding. This type of 'one-shot' design could be useful for some of the Expert products, for example, the Soothing Scalp Lotion which comes in separate sachets in a box.


These fruit pockets are really suitable for kids as they are easy to open and dispense. They are also intended as one-shot drinks, so the disposable and non-wasteful packaging is great. They are also easier to pack in lunch boxes as they are much flatter. This would also mean that they are easier to pack for transportation and would take up a lot less space than a bottle, as the shape tessellates better. The printing onto these pouches is very bright and clean- it is good to know that such results can be achieved with such a soft and malleable material.


This pouch solves the problems with brown sugar bags that tend to split easily. The pouch stands up on a wide base, and reseals with a zip-lock seal. The clear packaging showcases the product inside, and the reverse out text is really strong. Overall the product is very strong, and solves a genuine problem. The idea of letting the product show through is really strong, and would work really well for coloured or textured products.


These thin metal bags are designed for the herbs to be grown in. This solves the issue of packaging the product and then buying something else to grow it in. Homebase do a product that is basically the same, and it actually works pretty well. The metal is a clean and easy surface to screen print onto.


These are similar to the sugar bag. A resealable pouch that minimises the use of materials, but keeps the product fresh and contained. This pouch is opaque, allowing the printed design to really stand out. Using a foil or coated metal is a good way of keeping the produce fresh, but the print finish is also great, really suitable for a detailed design.


This a non-resealable pouch that uses a cardboard folding label top. This allows the printing to be done onto the card, and the pouch left totally clear, making it easier to recycle. This is great for sauces, soups etc, but wouldn't be ideal for cosmetics.

Tuesday 17 November 2009

Direct Mail...

One of the products I have to produce for Cake&Co. is a mail shot. Direct mail is a really great way to target local people, increase sales, and advertise promotions. I have tried to find some interesting direct mail, though that is proving hard. I want my piece to be simple - probably a standard A6 format, an to be engaging by using colours, and providing more information than basic 'this is our promotion - hooray!'

This is the most interesting piece of direct mail I could find - It is quite clever, the message is clear, but the printing and size is very simple. Unfortunately this is the most interesting piece I could find, which I think is saying a lot.

I know that my client does not want the mail out to cost a lot, so the design will probably be quite simple but hopefully represent the brand in a good way.

Monday 16 November 2009

Decorative Type...

The basis for this design (poster) is quite different to what I am producing, but the use of multiple type faces is similar to the style I have been working in. The use of craft paper as the background is complimentary to the type; it doesn't draw attention away from the design, it also enables it to have more of a texture and natural look, and obviously it is quite appropriate for the vintage rough and mis matched feel the whole piece has.

I have been considering using craft papers in my paper product design work, and I think that this shows how effective it can be.

Flat Pack...

I have been investigating products that are reducing their packaging in clever ways. I found this product - 3.38 is designed for the purposes of taking liquids on an aeroplane. 3.38 fl.oz or 100ml is the maximum capacity of any one liquid allowed in carry on luggage, and these products have been designed with that specification in mind. They are also made of Polyethylene and polypropylene - both 100% recycled and can be recycled together using a low energy process. All in all, this is a product that is perfect for the environmentally conscious traveller (pity it doesn't offset aeroplane carbon emissions too!).

Found at the

Saturday 14 November 2009

Boutique Ranges...

Paperchase are brilliant when it comes to creating ranges of products that use a continual design. A range usually consists of one of every wrapping product in the same design, and possibly some in different, simpler designs that use the colours from the main boutique range. The range below is christmas 2009, and they have done a great job of creating a range that is suitable for a range of products, and showcases the design to its best.

I am intending on creating a range similar to this, but probably containing a wider range of products and using one main design, and a lower key pattern design. Boutique ranges are quite popular, and the products usually sell quite well, and they area bought as a complimentary set. I do feel that my designs may work quite well as stand alone products, but a boutique range will strengthen the overall design, and make it more commercially viable.

Paperchase Grunge Star Christmas range:

Bakery Branding...

I came across this piece at Phrizbie Design. They have produced an entire range of products for a Dubai based bakery. This is very much in the same vein as the items and style of work I am intending to produce. I can see from this range of products that they have kept the continuity running throughout the brand, but managed to stop it from looking the same. This is something I need to consider for the range of products I am producing, as well as making sure that it still presents the brands values and personality.

Sunday 8 November 2009

Christmas Colour...

I have been asked to consider the colour combinations that I could use for the christmas wrap, card, bag and accessory designs. I have been looking at some christmas websites to find some less traditional colour combinations, but that still have a richness and festive feel.

Silver and Purple

Orange and Warm Brown

Frost: Blue, Silver, White, Grey

Cinnamon and Aqua

Berry: Plum, Purple, Red, Maroon

Thursday 5 November 2009

Bread and Coffee...

I came across this packaging design work for Joe and Dough (ie. coffee and bread) on a packaging design website. I like the general feel of the design, but it seems like it could be much more playful and interesting. The take-away bag is getting there with the illustrations, but the bread box is boring as hell! This design does not seem to have been refined a lot, and the colours are quite an obvious choice...overall I think that so much more could be done with this brand, it does not need to be so stayed and dull.