He points to one of his award-winning
creations, Raised By Wolves, an IPA that’s
fruit forward. “The label has a lot of orange
and teal and wild wolves and things like
that. I try to show what the person is going
When it comes to special effects, he
likes to employ them whenever there’s bud-get.
“Anything I can do to catch the con-sumer’s
eye will increase their chances of
purchase. If I can get them to touch it with a
spot or satin varnish, that’s a bonus.”
He once did a glow-in-the-dark label
on a Coven vodka bottle and uses hot and
cold foils for funky designs. “I’ll talk to the
label printer to find out their capabil-ity
and what they’re printing on. We try to
work with them to see how far we can push
their machine and find out what they want
to try,” said Hatter.
“We want our labels to be tempting to
all the senses. We want consumers to pick
them up and feel the stock texture, foil and
embossing. However, the environment of
the product also affects the type of label. Is
it going to be sitting in a refrigerator or ice
bucket? If so, we need to look at glue, stock
and other elements,” said Nidle.
Another consideration is the number
of regulatory body approvals. In Canada,
you need approval in every province and
the rules may differ in each one. “It’s impor-tant
that designers know what can and
can’t be on labels,” she said.
What do designers avoid?
According to Hatter, “Anything offensive,
hard to read, cluttered or messy. People
want to read what they’re about to drink.
Don’t make it hard for someone who’s 50
trying to make out the fine print on the
back of a bottle in a store.”
He also advises avoiding sexual con-tent,
“That stuff’s just done.”
Is label testing important?
Not necessarily, according to our experts.
“There are companies that will test
your label in study groups and market situ-ations
or using algorithms, but not a lot of
producers have the time or money to do
this,” said Falloon.
“In the alcohol beverage world there
are a lot of amazing designs that work in
market due simply to sound design prin-ciples
and experienced stakeholders. As a
small creative team, we test our ideas on
others before sharing with the client, but we
ultimately leave testing up the client.”
Hatter is even more equivocal.
“Testing can kill design because you get
a bunch of unqualified people who are get-ting
paid to give an opinion no matter what.
I’m brought in to disrupt with wild stuff. I’m
not doing boring wine labels.”
Despite the many complex factors
behind every label, its ultimate effective-ness
may be hard to define.
“A package is great when it works –
when it grabs consumers attention on the
shelf and makes it into the shopping bag,
when the visual design, tone and messaging
all fit together to create something authen-tic
and compelling,” said Falloon.
Courtesy of Sean Fenzl Courtesy of Anouk & I
A strong design can seamlessly be applied to multiple branding elements
32 § POURED CANADA § www.poured.ca