Package design plays an absolutely crucial role in differentiation and consumer selection at retail. Aside from looking nice, it helps to have unique characteristics in a design that align with the brand and the product. These statements are true across the board, but in the world of wine – where choice can be nearly impossible for the casual consumer – package design can play an even greater role in standing out from the pack. Here is a compilation of some really stand-out wine packaging that caught our eye.
Note: The below examples have been selected purely from a design and brand perspective.
Snake & Herring
This new Australian wine features some nice illustrative artwork in their packing and branding, with a great underlying story. “Snake and Herring is a wine obsessed road trip searching for remarkable grapes from West Australian vineyards.” The packaging depicts a fairytale like scene, where the two founders “Snake” and “Herring” float along in a ship suspended by grape balloons, searching for the perfect ingredients for their wine. A nice contrast is achieved with the etched artwork, soft color pallete and light background.
With names like “High+Dry,” “Wide Open Road” and “Dirty Boots,” Snake and Herring is definitely a wine for the adventurous type who are all about the journey.
Seven Deadly Sins
A series of wines produced by Spainsh design firm Sidecar Publicidad that showcases the seven deadly sins. A unique label is devoted to each of the sins creating a set of dramatic individual pieces. Dark, moody colors with hints of red, gold and silver evoke a sinful presence.
The standouts of the bunch are perhaps the most obvious and simple designs, yet maybe the most powerful. Lust is a red bottle with a black lace covering, while Envy is a solid, glossy gold with bold, black type.
Meteor Merlot, White Fences Vineyard
Work Labs created this unique bottle design for White Fences Vineyard in Virginia. The imagery doesn’t stray too far from the name “Meteor,” depicting a dark, star-filled sky. An interesting characteristic of this bottle is that the printing uses the whole surface of the bottle. The sky becomes more dynamic with a 360 degree view, versus a flat label.
Between Five Bells
An Australian biodynamic winery, Five Bells, created an informational bottle that is also aesthetically pleasing. “I like the idea of transparency from winemakers, and the primary tool of communication is a wine’s label.” They took the data for each wine and Nicholas Felton took over from there. He is known for data visualization and his Annual Reports.
Eight Arms, The Argonaut
There is something unexpected about an octopus wrapping around a wine bottle. A clear brown bottle with the label screen printed in white creates a stunning execution here. The artwork wraps the bottle, so we can see through to the far reaching tentacles of the octopus on the reverse side, achieving a nice sense of depth.
An Australian winery with a limited budget, uses a very simple, one color approach. The full bottle features a white label with the backwards “Back Label” logo knocked out. As you enjoy the wine, the mirror image of the label is (correctly) visible from the reverse side. In this case, things seem to be clearer after you finish the bottle.
Atico de Madrid
Madrid’s Narrow-House takes a hands on approach that uses a pen and ink sketch, with some nice color accents. The original sketch is what is printed on the label, leaving all the little anomalies and imperfections.
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema “Bottle of Witts”
This Texas cinema worked with Helms Workshop on their in-house wine offering. “Alamo’s 2012 offering became two wines inspired by The Princess Bride, in honor of the 25th anniversary of the film”.
This label was done by the talented Dana Tanamachi, a chalk letterer from NYC. The whole package was done in chalk, from the logo right down to the fine print. Be sure to check out a time lapse video of the artist sketching the label here.
Some Young Punks
A bold and charismatic winery from Australia, Some Young Punks commissioned illustrator Tomer Hanuka to ink these labels from the “Live and Rare” series.
As we can see, a unique approach, concept, theme, or execution can go a long way if its done right. So, next time you’re at the store, belittled by shelves upon shelves of bottles, take notes on which ones stand out to you?