NYC, it’s Time to Eat! Behind the New Design for NYC Restaurant Week

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For the 25th year, NYC Restaurant Week is back for the foodies of Manhattan and every borough. The famed event, taking place starting today, July 24th to August 18th, 2017 celebrates the culinary cultural mosaic of the city and the global cuisines that New York City has to offer. To revive the design for their anniversary, NYC Restaurant Week turned to The Working Assembly for something that would reflect the fun and inclusivity of this annual event that New Yorkers love so. We spoke with TWA to learn a little bit more about create the design behind this much anticipated experience, highlighting cultures in digital platforms, taking NYC Restaurant Week in a new direction, and more.

Walk us through the process you went through upon receiving the brief.

The Working Assembly: The client wanted to do something to relaunch Restaurant Week in tandem with celebrating their 25th anniversary, and we wanted to do something that celebrated Restaurant Week in a way that only New York can! As we dug into the brief, we realized that what we needed to do was celebrate all the places around the globe that just living in New York can take you—which is where we came up with the hero line “taste where it takes you.” We created fun concepts like “break bread in another borough” or “share a cab, hog a dessert” that juxtaposed the culture of NYC and its cuisines.

In a city that never sleeps and offers an endless amount of things to do, how did you design the campaign to ignite that sense of excitement for New Yorkers?

The Working Assembly: We wanted to really celebrate the neighborhoods and the unique aspects of dining in this city. We shot this with food photographer Bobbi Lin to capture beautiful food stories, pairing this with a handwritten type that playfully contrasted the plate.

How did you work to capture different cultures in the digital and physical platforms?

The Working Assembly: We wanted the food to be the star and the copy really helped play up the different cultures. It’s always so fun to work on shoots like this, where the digital aspects (creating gifs, playing with type on the plate) intersect with the physical props of the food and plates.

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Restaurant Week is an experience. What particular considerations did you make in this project to sell something that is not a physical product?

The Working Assembly: We knew the food had to be shot well and we looked to identify a photographer who would be able to capture beautifully-lit and delicious looking meals. We also wanted the experience to feel authentic, so we created a fun scene with the dessert plates and everyone putting a fork in and then one person just taking the whole plate for themselves to illustrate the tagline “Share a cab, hog a dessert.”

How does the design celebrate New York City and highlight its diversity?

The Working Assembly: We highlighted the diversity within the cuisine we shot. We chose Mediterranean, American, Italian and Asian to showcase just a glimpse of the different types of food you can get in NYC—of course there are so many more!

What kind of a directional shift did you create for NYC Restaurant Week? How do you think this will benefit them in the future?

The Working Assembly: Something the NYC & Co team were looking for was a fresh outside perspective. They often do their creative 100% in-house, and we felt this was an opportunity to really show them a range of work that would push where the work has been. In the past, they had relied heavily on vector art and illustrations, and we wanted the food to be the star! So we suggested a photography heavy campaign. We also really wanted to highlight diversity of cuisine/offerings so we are happy they picked this concept which really plays that up.

What were some of the key elements that brought this whole project together?

The Working Assembly: One of our favorite things we got to do for this project was create the 25-year mark—which is used in all the celebration communications and event collateral. The 25 logo mark has the hidden spoon and fork which was a really serendipitous design element.

 


Designed by: The Working Assembly

Creative Director: Jolene Delisle

Design Director: Lawrence O’Toole

Food photography: Bobbi Lin

Copywriter: Kate Canary

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The Dieline’s Best of the Week

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Join us as we look back on the best packaging design articles and projects from last week. You won’t be disappointed!


British Retailer Marks & Spencer Reduces its Packaging for Less Air & Less Plastic

 

Brandless™: A New Way For Consumers to Shop for Everyday CPG Items All at $3.00

 

Trojan XOXO is a New Brand that Makes Condoms Look Sexy

 

33 Can Designs We Love

 

Celebrate Pride With This Rainbow Edition Absolut Bottle

 

An Innovative, Hands-On Entertainment Experience for Children’s Day 2017

 

Sense and Sensibility in Branding: the First Steps of Capturing the Consumer’s Attention

 

Check Out the Beautiful Geometric Packaging for Hip Water

 

How Extraordinary Wolffer Estate Pink Gin got its Extraordinary Packaging

 

Add Some Spice to Your Life With This Line of Hot Pepper Jellies

 

For Yemeni Agency Snono, Art is a Part of Business

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This Belgian Dark Ale Concept has Packaging that Will Definitely Catch Your Attention

Christian Úbeda is behind this moody and striking packaging concept for UDOL. With striking geometric elements and a bold sans serif font, it’s a beer you wouldn’t be able to miss on the shelf.


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“UDOL (meaning ‘howl’ in Catalan) is a concept project for a Belgian Dark Ale beer crafted in Betxí (Castelló, Spain).”

“In the conceptual stage, New Wave—or also Swiss Punk Typogaphy—and designers as Wolfgang Weingart were taken as main inspiration in order to create a sober yet strong brand concept and identity.”

 


Designed by: Christian Úbeda

Country: Spain

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Büffel is Just a Very Good Beer

Gustavo Paiva created the awesome conceptual branding and packaging for Büffel Beer.

“Büffel is a local beer from Belo Horizonte, Brazil, which just started its first production.

The inspiration for the creation of the brand’s typography comes from the Gothic calligraphy, much used in the Netherlands and Germany in the last phase of medieval calligraphic development. The word Büffel comes from the Dutch, which translated into English means buffalo. The animal was chosen as an icon for the company by representing its main concepts, of transmitting strength and magnificence through its product.”

“From the beginning I did the illustration keeping in mind how it would work on creating the end result. The representation of the animal had to be strong so I was inspired by the features of the woodcut to convey the feeling of something more rustic. With strong contrast between the colors I used the black color as the base to create the feeling of a more sober atmosphere.”


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“The end result is a strong but at the same time refined identity, which stands out amidst a large craft beer market in the region.

Finally a series of posters with variations of application of the identity was developed to demonstrate how diverse it can be. In addition to carrying the main message of the brand, a good beer with a strong concept.

Büffel is a strong craft beer. Just a very good beer.”

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Designed By: Gustavo Paiva

Location: Brazil

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Royston Labels and Redsmith Team Up for this Award-Winning Gin

We can’t take our eyes off of this hypnotizing gin label. Agency Fifteen Design, Royston Labels manufacturer, and Redsmith London Dry Gin collaborated to make this stylish label fit for an award-winning spirit.


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“The Redsmith Distillery was only opened a year ago, but in that time its signature creation, Redsmith London Dry Gin, has been awarded Classic Gin of the Year. The gin itself is notable for its smooth texture and citrus notes—but there’s also much to praise about its eye-catching label.”

“Manufactured by Royston Labels on one of their combination presses, the label was printed on a super white textured material with a black finish and boasts embossed hot foil branding. The rich copper red used here is mimicked with an ink and features again on the inside of the label, where the Redsmith logo is set against a lively pattern of monochrome circles. This striking background swirls and swells with the movement of the liquid, creating a truly unique visual effect.”

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“The label was commissioned by Redsmith distiller Wayne Asher after he met with Royston’s Technical Sales and Innovations Manager, Phil Bradnam, last year. In his own words, Asher ‘realised that Royston had the capabilities to produce the Redsmith labels as they were intended.’”

“Of course, while the finished label might ooze effortless style, the Royston Labels team were put through their paces during production. Black and copper inks had to be printed on the inside of the label without compromising the adhesive quality, and the application of hot foil to textured material proved tricky. But from the looks of the finished label, Royston passed this particular challenge with flying colours.”

 


Designed by: Fifteen Design

Label Manufacturer: Royston Labels

Photography: Alex Bibby

Country: United Kingdom

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This Conceptual Cookie Packaging Would Make a Great Souvenir

Vsevolod Abramov and David Hovhannisyan have designed this bold conceptual packaging for cannabis cookies that would serve as souvenirs from the famous Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.

“The largest museum in the Netherlands, the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, announced the Rijksstudio Award. This prompted the creation of cookies with cannabis on the basis of the collection of the Rijksmuseum. A good mood is guaranteed. What’s unique? Why do tourists go to Amsterdam? Of course, for cheese, tulips and wooden boots-clobs. However, it’s not a secret that many visitors to the Dutch capital come here to smoke legal marijuana.

The designers have developed a series of ‘Won Der Cookie- cookies with cannabis’ packages. The design was based on the ‘mood-smile’. Hence the main bright colors on the package and smiling portraits from the main national museum in the Netherlands – Rijksmuseum. Designers have implemented modern technologies including FaceApp, to create ‘smiling portraits.’”
 

 


Designed By: Vsevolod Abramov and David Hovhannisyan

Location: Moscow, Russia

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This Dazzling Packaging Concept for Wine Cans is Perfect for Hot Summer Days

Wine cans are such an easy way to enjoy some chilled wine on picnics or other summer outings. This concept, from Azadeh Graphic Design Studio, is ornate and infused with sunny colors.

“This limited edition wine design was inspired by shiraz’s wine history and Iranian motifs. The design was inspired by Iranian painting varnished and layout. Using no significant text, the individual patterns provide a subtle, tasteful indication of whether the wine is full-bodied or effervescent.”


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“The winemakers at Et Cetera approached me with the request of creating a label design for their new line if limited run wines. The task was to create a stylish and Traditional luxury design that would make the product stand out on the shelves. Assuming that these are expensive quality wines, we also had to create the feeling of exclusivity through an original and unusual design. Besides, the project also required its own product placement, a concept that would be completely different from what the other local winemakers had to offer.”

 


Designed by: Azadeh Graphic Design Studio

Country: Iran

City Tehran

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This Design Concept Could Tackle World Hunger and Plastic Waste in One

Nothing beats fresh herbs when cooking, but too often these plants get packaged in plastic. Edmundas Jankauskas developed a concept that would provide consumers with fresh herbs they could grow themselves, minus the wasteful packaging.

“This is a final project of Visual Communication Design Master’s studies in Vilnius Academy of Arts.”


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“By different counts, every year we lose almost 1/3 (which is almost 1.4 billion tonnes) of the food we grow and produce. With this amount of food we could feed one billion people and defeat starvation. At the same time we throw immense amounts of plastics into our environment. These two major problems gave the ground inspiration to create a packaging and a product which would allow consumer to grow their own food and reduce the amount of trash.”

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“LIFI is made of two parts: an active ecological packaging and herb seeds. The package itself is made out of processed fallen tree leaves collected in the forests of Lithuania. The hand made package is filled with seeds and a cover is formed. When user opens and waters the product, packaging starts to dissolve and helps plant to grow. This product is an alternative to the in-store found herbs, which are often plastic packaged. It can be reused many times or just thrown away.”

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Designed by: Edmundas Jankauskas

Supervisor: assoc. prof. Robertas Jucaitis

Country: Lithuania

City: Vilnius

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Chase Design Group Mourns Death of Founder Margo Chase

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It is with deep sadness that we share the devastating news of the passing of a true legend, visionary, and design icon, Margo Chase. She was a beacon in this industry, a personal hero of mine, and big supporter of The Dieline. Founded in 1986, her work at Chase Design Group has truly paved the way for our industry. She will be profoundly missed.

Los Angeles, CA, July 24 — We are deeply saddened to announce that Margo Chase, Founder and Chief Creative Officer of Chase Design Group, was killed in an aviation accident on Saturday July 22nd in Apple Valley, California. The cause of the accident is unknown. In addition to her passion for design, Margo was an accomplished aviator who loved the art of flying.

Margo founded Chase Design Group in 1986, building it into a respected and successful global brand design firm. Chris Lowery, president, has vowed that the company will continue to be driven by the insatiable curiosity and love of design she embodied.

“Everyone in the Chase Design Group family has been touched and inspired by Margo’s creativity, generous spirit and love for design. We will all miss her brilliance and incredible energy, but will carry her vision for the organization forward as she would have wanted,” he says. “All of us here at Chase send our heartfelt condolences to her husband Patrick Dugan and the rest of her family.”

About Chase Design Group

Chase Design Group (http://ift.tt/13DA3MM) is a creative agency with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and the UK and is dedicated to exploring new territory and questioning conventional assumptions to produce extraordinary outcomes. Founded in 1986 by Margo Chase, the firm’s expertise spans brand strategy, corporate & brand identity, package design and retail environments for clients including Procter & Gamble, PepsiCo, Nestlé, and Campbell Soup Company.

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Sustainable Package Design is a Must to Tackle Pollution Crisis

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by Paul Foulkes-Arellano

Brand packaging designers have a vital role to play when it comes to driving positive change, no more so when it comes to sustainable pack innovation.

In recent decades, we’ve seen game-changing improvements in packaging efficiency, with more and more lightweight solutions brought to market.  As a result of sustained R&D investment, packaging suppliers have both reduced the environmental impact of their product offering and reduced costs throughout the supply chain. But the increased use of plastics in food and beverage packaging has had unexpected consequences, as evidenced by shocking images across the media.

The changing profile of plastic packaging in recent years has been dramatic. PET plastic bottles are 30% lighter than 15 years ago. And on the back of decades of work to promote slimline packaging, plastic on average accounts for only 1-3% of the total weight of UK food and drink products.  But their final resting place is not just landfill.

Across the globe, we still dump around 8 million tons of plastic waste into oceans each year. Every minute we dump the equivalent of one garbage truck’s worth of plastic into global seas. In some areas of the South Pacific, plastic debris is thought to outnumber plankton by a ratio of six to one. The pollution problem shows no sign of going away anytime soon, however, with plastic taking an average of 400 years to degrade in water. 

The consequences for wildlife can be deadly. Thousands of seabirds and sea turtles, seals and other marine mammals are killed each year after ingesting plastic or getting entangled in it. Endangered wildlife like Hawaiian monk seals and Pacific loggerhead sea turtles are among nearly 300 species that eat and get caught in plastic litter. Dissections of deceased sperm whales often reveal their stomachs to be clogged with plastic debris. 

There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that we should be worried about the effect of plastic litter on human health too. Around a third of fish caught off the coast of South West England are thought to contain plastic traces, with seafood eaters at risk of ingesting toxic debris. More scientific research needs to be done, so in effect, we are in the dark of the true impact of trace plastics in food.

Recycling is often touted as the answer to the pollution problem, and impressive progress has been made in this area. Plastic products are made up of more recycled material than ever before, and we’ve seen sustained industry investment in recycling capacity for plastics. Despite a concerted effort to increase recycling, we still only recycle 14% of our plastic packaging. 
The answer then is clear. While plastic is a great material, we need to be much smarter about what we package our food and drink products in. 

This year I joined forces with campaign group A Plastic Planet. Its mission is to give consumers the chance to choose more sustainable packaging options when they shop for food and drink. The group is aiming to secure a Plastic Free Aisle in supermarkets, which would feature products packaged in alternative materials such as aluminum and sustainable plant-based materials rather than fossil fuel-based plastics destined for landfill. 

A Plastic Planet wants to work with brand designers, brand owners and retailers to encourage more sustainable alternatives to goods designed for single-use plastic manufacture. With an unrivaled capacity for innovation, we think brand designers are ideally placed to realize our vision of a more sustainable future for food and drink in global retail.  Collectively brand designers specify billions of units every year, and it’s clear we need forward-thinking brand designers to help brand owners switch out of single-use plastics.
 

With plastic pollution reaching endemic levels, it is incumbent on all of us to work together to find a better way forward. 

 


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Paul Foulkes-Arellano

Paul Foulkes-Arellano is Head of Retail Solutions at A Plastic Planet and Precipice Design Head of Client Programmes.

Paul studied Modern Languages at Cambridge University specialising in Spanish linguistics. He is fascinated by shopper culture across countries and continents, having worked extensively in Asia and Latin America. He’s spent the past 28 years travelling the globe encountering brands and companies with exciting challenges, which also allows him to indulge in a spot of birdwatching.

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For Yemeni Agency Snono, Art is a Part of Business

It’s hard enough starting a design agency—but imagine if after nine years in business you picked it up and moved to another country entirely? That’s exactly what Snono did. After leaving Yemen and arriving in Istanbul, Turkey, this agency has thrived even despite the challenges it has faced. We spoke with Abdulrahman H. Jaber, Art Director at Snono to learn more about the history of their studio, the work they do, and what inspires them.

This post is a recurring series where we interview designers and agencies with ties to the countries affected by the immigration ban. This is an effort to promote an understanding of the cultures, and we hope that these insightful Q&As highlight the need for diversity in all aspects of life. If you are or happen to know agencies or designers in any of the included countries, please reach out to us directly: theresa@dielinemedia.com

First of all, tell us a little bit about Snono and your team.

Abdulrahman: I officially launched Snono around 2006 in Yemen. Initially, it was meant to be a personal project driven by my passion and the love of design. At that time, I just aimed to introduce creativity and sort of an “out of the box” design model in Yemen and make a difference in the industry.

I had no team at that time and I started building it myself, and in a matter of few months I created a team consisted of passionate individuals and creative minds. By 2014 we reached 8 full-time team members including myself. I’m proud to say that we began very small as a design studio providing specified design services, but we eventually settled into a full-service agency serving a wide range of clients, NGOs, and governmental sectors.  

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What is the meaning and importance of the name, “Snono”?

Abdulrahman: Snono is the Arabic name of the swallow which is a small bird and known migrant who is always ready to set off on long journeys. I was looking for a light name that would reflect freedom and movement, yet easy to be pronounced in both Arabic and English. This also related to me wanting to live and experience other cultures and countries. I also think that a good art crosses barriers and migrates everywhere on this planet, and Snono is all about aiming to achieve that.


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Top: images of Sana’a, Yemen; Bottom: images of Istanbul, Turkey.

The agency began in Yemen, however, you have since relocated to Istanbul. What has that adjustment been like?

Abdulrahman: This is true, so far we have been here for about a year and a half. It’s wasn’t an easy journey—it still isn’t.

First, moving out after 9 years of working in a place where your company and team was built and flourished, to a new place that you literally need to start from scratch is without a doubt tough. It felt as we have started from zero. It was really exhausting to think of ways to regain our confidence, potential, and to network. Also, the fact that we are working in a country where we hadn’t mastered the local language add to this challenge. However, as a team, we didn’t allow this to hold us back. We have been heavily engaged in language courses so we can grasp the nature of business here and fully integrate into the industry.  

I am personally grateful for the experience though. Istanbul is an inspiring city that’s filled with rich culture and history. Creativity in design is key aspect in here and in spite of the language barrier, we were fortunate to network and meet with key members of design and art. As a designer, I feel I’m growing and learning by this wide and rich art spectrum around me

What design philosophy have you adopted at Snono?

Abdulrahman: Connecting art to business is the philosophy we adopted in our company. It is how we process things and get work done with the best ultimate result. We also encourage our clients to express their ideas and share them with us throughout the process. This is a really good way to maintain decent relations with them and achieve better outcomes

What, if any, unique cultural aspects of Yemen make their way into your work?

Abdulrahman: I’d like to think of Yemen as the country of wonders—in every corner there’s a story to be told, in every street’s wall there’s a scribbling to be inspired by. It’s a country where history, rich culture and diversity all meet at once. Generally speaking, this surely has inspired me in many ways and my work was mainly driven by the mixture of the charm of traditions and the modern world today.

Yemen is a country that’s been always portrayed by violence. If the media decides to bring Yemen to the light (which is rarely being done by the way) then they do it through exhibiting images of conflict, as if there’s nothing else to share about Yemen. I am glad that I was able to bring a different narrative about Yemen to the surface through my design work.

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What are the recent design trends you’ve seen popping up where you are?

Abdulrahman: That’s a good question, thank you. But with the rapid changes that are happening in the world today, it would be hard for me to identify one trend in a comparison to another. I can’t define a certain design trend that is dominating the scene. There is a huge diversity in design and each has it’s own audiences and supporters. You could always spot complex designs as well as novice ones in many different styles. Typography designs play a strong role in here and designers (in general) has a good taste in adopting it in their work’s style.  

What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced as an agency? How have you overcome them?

Abdulrahman: In Yemen, one of the biggest challenges was finding and maintaining good designers. We worked with many but it wasn’t good enough, as they didn’t have the needed skills and the creative minds we were looking for.  So we decided to go to universities and education institutes and hire recent graduates. It was time-consuming and wasn’t an efficient methodology for searching for new talents, yet we enjoyed it and we thought that in a way or another we contributed to our society. Also, the conflict in Yemen created an unstable market; businesses kept falling down and that affected us as well. We lost many clients; it was like a huge slap in the face. Again this is why we moved to Turkey.  

When looking for design inspiration, where do you turn? How do you keep the team at Snono inspired?

Abdulrahman: I believe that humans are curious about other humans. Wouldn’t you agree?

I am inspired by people around me, a single conversation can lead to a great idea. I find knowledge sharing is the best source of inspiration too.

I do encourage my team to seek out opportunities of interactions and mingle with those who can feed into their minds things that they had never experienced before. I also keep them inspired by giving them the space they need so they can be challenged and try different things. There is no limit of what they can do and can’t. They are aware of that.


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You have a team with a wide variety of talents! How do the different parts of the team work together on a single project?

Abdulrahman: I love the environment of our workspace, we really feel that we are one big family, and the fact that we are various in ages and professional experiences allows for direct mentorship to take place and each learn from the other. That’s something I’m really proud of.

As for our approach to work collectively on a single project, it’s not hard to figure out since we have established a flexible working environment. It goes like this: prior to any new project I ask more than one team member to make some drafts for a certain project (usually based on the previous creative brief). After we define the path with the client, I usually ask one person (unless the project needs more) to be fully in charge of the of the whole project. Of course, this is being done along the supervision of the Art Director but in a way that it doesn’t make him/her feel less controlled.

We also allow our team members to communicate with the clients directly to get feedback and discuss details with them about the project. This is really beneficial.  Given the trust we built within the team, I believe that allowing team members to have a direct connection with clients is a good way to make them care more and act responsibly toward finalizing everything before the deadline.

Tell us about one of your favorite packaging or branding projects you’ve worked on.

Abdulrahman: One of my favorite projects is titled “Leena.” It was our first packaging project. So that was really an exciting kick off our journey. It was designed for a Yemeni fragrance company manufacturing natural reed diffusers

Leena was inspired and designed based on unique Yemeni ancient illustrations that could be historically witnessed in buildings and architectural spaces in Yemen. It’s really hard to not notice them, especially in less modern houses. The target market for this product was Europe and countries around the world and so I aimed to include a slice of our culture in it.

How do you hope to make people feel through your design work?

Abdulrahman: I always aim to produce something that would trigger attention and that it won’t be easy to grasp at first hand. I want people to feel intrigued and ask questions. I also want them to feel the changes of tests and inspirations as we progress in our work.

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Erdbeer Gin is Inspired By Old Traditions

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Max Khorobrykh has designed the packaging for Erdbeer Gin.

“The label design for Erdbeer-Gin takes inspiration from vintage and authentic elements that allows reflecting the spirit of family and country life. Wooden cork, manual filling and stamp perforation add the vintage chic and keeping old traditions.”


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Designed By: Max Khorobrykh

Client: Karls Erlebnis-Dorf

Location: Moscow, Russia

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