Packaging

Outstanding and unique packaging design

Having vast experience in the graphic design industry means that we have knowledge of a variety of special print finishes that can add an extra special touch to your product packaging design 

There are an infinite number of different combinations of materials, print finishes and techniques that can be used in the creation of unique packaging design. These are options and suggestions that would not necessarily be presented to you by all graphic design agencies. We take our interest in packaging design seriously and keep up-to-date on the latest trends so that we have access to a library of unique packaging design production options. In doing so we can work to produce creative and original packaging designs. At anyone time we will have a stock of samples that we can show to our clients and that we use as a source of inspiration. The following are the top 10 materials and print finishes that we are looking forward to using in some future packaging projects. (Please note images below are to show material and print finishes only and are not showing design work from AKGraphics.) You can view some of our previous packaging projects here.

1. Cork Label Material

We love this very thin layer of natural cork that can be used in unusual packaging design. Due to the nature of the raw material, there will be slight variations in tone and appearance which are ideal to effectively promote a natural product. This would make for very unique label for organic wine or perhaps a small batch gin or rum, or a homemade jam or chutney label design.

Unusual cool bottle label design

2. Disappearing ink

When you rub this ink is vanishes. We’re not really sure what we would use this for but if an unusual packaging design project comes along that has this requirement we will have the option available to us!

Disappearing ink for Packaging

3. Matt Foil Blocking

Foiling is one of the most popular finishing techniques. Pearlescent foiling is the most common option and creates a smooth and highly reflective surface. Gold, copper and silver foils look particularly striking in luxury packaging design. For a more unusual effect a matt foils could be used and we feel this would work extremely well in bold geometric modern packaging design.

packaging design with Matte foil block

4. 3D Embossing

Embossing and debossing is an effect where the surface is either raised or pressed down to create a design. The traditional process brings an added appeal to packaging design. The effect we are looking forward to working with is a 3D Embossing where the effect is much more striking and dramatic. The finished effect is very high end and so we would love to see this finish used in a very luxurious product packaging design. A limited edition or special collectors version of a product would be the ideal opportunity to use this finish.

3D Embossing Packaging design Ireland

5. Motion Cutting

Die cutting is a process by which a bespoke shape is cut away from material using a cutting template called a die or forme. This technique is commonly used on folders, business cards and other stationary. There are certain limitations in this in that the shape cannot be too intricate. A newer technique where a laser cuts away a design can be used to create extremely detailed and effective packaging designs. This finish would be very effective in cutting away a portion of the packaging to reveal a glimpse of the product within.

Cut out Packaging Design

6. Letterpress Textures and Patterns

Dating back to 1439, letterpress is the oldest form of printing. Traditionally used for decorative and vintage effects, the process usually involves a block template of raised letters that is inked and pressed onto the paper. A more modern take on this would be to use letterpress without ink to create a pattern or texture on the packaging design. This effect would create a wonderfully tactile finish for a unique packaging look.

Letterpress texture design

7. Glitter

Certainly not suitable for every design project but in the right scenario this print finish would create a standout design with a striking appearance. Glitter varnish would add a decorative and eye-catching coating that would give sparkle to your packaging. Definitely a finish we would love to use on a funky project.

Glitter on Packaging Design Ireland

8. 3D Spot UV

3D UV is a high gloss raised varnish. The fundamental difference between 3D UV and Spot UV is the height. Spot UV sits flat and 3D UV has the height between 1-3mm. This finish gives a modern feel and can be used to highlight certain aspects in the packaging design.

Raised Spot UV - Water effect printing

9. Soft Touch Coating

This print finish will create an effect so smooth and so subtle that the packaging will feel like silky velvet. The soft touch coating application creates a soft, velvety texture. We think this luxury package design finish would work very well with packaging for high-end luxurious gift products.

Soft touch finish effect for packaging

10. Edge Painting

If the edges of the material used to create the packaging design are visible an extra splash of colour can be added with painted edges. This finishing process involves covering the sides of a piece of print with a layer of ink or paint. We could see this effect working really well in a box created from thick card with a minimal black and white design so that the painted edges become the highlight of the striking packaging design.

Edge painting for packaging design

If you have a product that requires packaging you can contact us to arrange a meeting to have a chat about the different options. We can then put together a proposal and work with you to create striking packaging design that does your product justice.

Contact Anne on 086-2643716 or email anne@akgraphics.ie and we’ll take it from there.

You can also view some of previous packaging projects here.

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Craft Gin, Craft Vodka and Craft Whiskey Label Design

Craft Spirits Packaging  – What’s on the outside is just as important as what’s inside the bottle.

At first that statement might seem a bit bold but read on before you judge.
The US is leading the global growth of craft spirits. It’s fair to say that this trend is strongly reflected in Ireland. Instead of one or two options for Gin and Vodka you can now expect a wonderful selection of craft options in most bars and hotels around the country. Spirit drinkers are seeking brands with a quirky backstory and ideally brands their peers have not heard of. Local distilling meets a number of ideals; it supports local communities, has more natural ingredients and creates a more environmentally friendly product. In the US two in five millennials define themselves as creative and unique and it they have taken this ethos into their spirit – buying habits. In 2008 there were approximately 100 craft distilleries in the US but by 2014 this number had increased to nearly 600. It is forecast that craft-spirits share of the US spirits market could rise to as much as 8% by 2020.
Another trend that is set to grow is flavoured spirits. Traditionally craft distillers steered away from flavouring spirits as it was seen as less premium. However craft innovators are now using more premium, unusual and naturally flavourings and botanicals to help to differentiate their products. Research from Mintel’s Global New Products Database reveals that craft spirit launches increased by 265% between 2011 and 2015. This surge in craft spirits is backed globally by strong consumer demand for artisanal alcoholic beverages. But the surge also means more competition and so it’s more important than ever that your particular alcohol brand is strong and distinctive.
small batch label designs
When you start a new distillery you will have a thousand things you need to think about. Making your craft Gin, Vodka or Whiskey will most likely be your main focus, however how your product will look should not be a last-minute thought.  Your label design should tell your story. It should make your spirit stand out behind the bar and on the retail shelf. And most importantly it should help to sell bottles. If you take a look at the bottles on the shelves at present it’s clear which ones stand out as premium products. It can be the case that a small batch craft spirit that is distilled with love and care could be overlooked in favour of a different brand with more appealing packaging. It’s important not to let this happen to your craft product.
Craft Whiskey Label design

Producing and launching a new product is expensive and because bottling and packaging is almost the last step it’s likely the budget will be tight for this stage. However the cost of your alcohol package design isn’t just the finished artwork seen on your label – there is hours of research, sketching, refining, market testing, paper selection and print consultations. We put the same love and attention into our design work that you put into your distilling. All these things are what makes the difference between “ok” packaging and stunning packaging that will do justice to your craft spirit. A professionally designed label is vital to creating a look that will convince a new customer to buy it.

Craft Whiskey Label design

There are hundreds of different styles of spirits for a reason. Different people have different tastes and those people are looking for something specific. Part of our job is to find out the unique aspects of your product and to use your label to sell your story to the people who will be interested in it the minute they see your bottle. Creating a alcohol label to appeal to everyone is like trying to please all of the people all of the time, it’s not possible and it’s much more effective to focus on your brand story and personality to ensure that you do justice to your particular craft spirit.

In the end, our goal is to help distilleries sell spirits. We have years of experience in alcohol label design and work with specialist alcohol label printers who achieve amazing printed results. We firmly believe when it comes to craft spirits – what’s on the outside is just as important as what’s inside the bottle. Your alcohol label design and packaging is one of the main things that will encourage a customer to try your product for the first time, only after that will the quality of your spirit be experienced.
No matter what stage of your process you are at, whether you are ready to start bottling or you just have an idea, get in touch with us here in AKGraphics and we will work with you to create packaging that does your spirit justice.
Tel: +353 59 9133633 or email anne@akgraphics.ie
Craft Whiskey Packaging design

 

Packaging for Whiskey by AKGraphics

 

Lid design for Whiskey by AKGraphics

 

Single Malt Label design by AKGraphics

 

Irish Whiskey Packaging design by AKGraphics

 

Copper Pot Whiskey Label Design by AKGraphics

 

Gold foil detail on Whiskey Packaging design by AKGraphics

 

Poitin label design by AKGraphics
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Luxury Bespoke Packaging Design for Walsh Whiskey Distillery

A beautiful bespoke design for a unique whiskey gift set

Luxury bespoke packaging design for Walsh Whiskey Distillery

If you are traveling through Dublin Airport and are looking for a unique Irish gift, consider Writers Tears Copper Pot Irish Whiskey mini gift-pack, wonderful designed, which will easily catch your eye in the whiskey department. This exclusive packaging design highlights the beauty of this unique whiskey gift set, currently available exclusively at The Loop Duty Free in Dublin Airport – a location with a vast array of eye-catching packaging. Walsh Whiskey Distillery Senior Global Sales Manager Shane Fitzharris commented: “We are delighted to be able to launch this in conjunction with The Irish Whiskey Collection and The Loop at Dublin Airport. We believe it will make a high-quality gift from those travelling from Ireland for whomever they are meeting in their travels abroad.”

The new packaging design pays tribute to Irish literature, a subject which Writers Tears uses as an inspiration across the wide variety of packaging under this brand. The mini-book gift pack bespoke design is based on a leather-bound book with extracts from ‘Dubliners’ by James Joyce. The packaging design features print finishes including copper foil and embossing which add to the luxury look of this gift box. The size of this custom package makes it an ideal gift size for transporting, plus you can also proudly display this gift in your library or on the mantelpiece. The magnetic opening of this gift box secures the three mini whiskey bottles within, a wonderful surprise on opening this gift pack.

It is extremely important to achieve a high end look in packaging design if you wish to position your products with other luxury gift items. With years of experience in bespoke spirits packaging design AKGraphics can assist you with any packaging design projects you may have. From initial ideas on box shapes and materials, to design and print finishes we will ensure that your packaging design stands out in a competitive retail environment. This packaging project was a wonderful challenge to execute and AKGraphics are delighted with the final result. Any Irish whiskey consequor would be thrilled to receive this uniquely designed gift pack.

luxury_packaging_design_ireland_AKGraphics

If this has peaked your interest you should also consider a visit to the Royal Oak, County Carlow, the home of Walsh Whiskey Distillery on the banks of the River Barrow. Walsh Whiskey Distillery is unique amongst independent Irish whiskey distilleries in producing all three styles of Irish whiskey – pot still, grain and malt – using two distilling lines (pot still and column still). Located on an 18th century estate comprising 40 acres of pastoral land, the distillery is the only independent Irish whiskey distillery producing all three styles of Irish whiskey. A unique visitor experience recommended to all.

If you are interested in discussing a packaging project that you have in mind contact Anne on +353 59 9133633 or email anne@akgraphics.ie

Luxury bespoke packaging design

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Present your product professionally with a 3D mock up

Whether you are pitching an idea for a new product or experimenting with new packaging design ideas for an existing product, a 3D mock-up is a useful tool to wow your target market visually. A 3D mockup (digital mock up) helps put your mind at ease by giving you a feel of how your product will look much earlier than when it is on the shelves.

The packaging design can be discussed and decisions on the design can be made more quickly. It also allows your intended customer to comment on your proposed product. By getting direct feedback from your exact target market you can make any changes needed to the packaging design before it goes into production.

AK Graphics can design and create your 3D mockup, helping you to:

  • save on photography and physical packaging mock up costs
  • see how your product will look on the shelves
  • get a visual of your product more quickly than with a physical mock up, which can be used in promotional material
  • visualise your packaging concept more easily
  • receive instant feedback from your customers regarding your proposed product packaging

HYDRO MONITRIX PACKAGING (TELLAB)

Here is an example of a 3D mock-up that was designed from scratch. The client needed the mock-ups in a hurry for a very specific international trade show, so the best solution was to design 3D mockups. Starting with a basic cube you can see how effective a 3D mock up can be. This mock up was made to test how this new product would be received on the market. The photorealism adds to the presentation of the product. In order to meet the extremely tight deadline, AKGraphics made the decision to design a digital 3D mockup of the hydro monitrix full product range instead of producing physical boxes. Once the client had approved the completed packaging design, we then produced photorealistic mockups of each box. AKGraphics designed promotional flyers using these 3D mock-ups, which were printed in time for the event. This solution allowed our client to make a professional presentation in a short time.

Mock-up-Idea-for-Web-blog

 

Packaging_mockup_Monitrix_Box

 

For presentation of the product at the trade show AKGraphics designed packaging, leaflets, presentation boards for display units and a PDF presentation.

 

Additional promotional material where a 3D mock up could be used…

– print advertising/online advertising

– portable pull up banners

– print material

– presentations/ PDF or powerpoint

– vouchers

– flyers/ brochures

If you are interested in having a 3D mock-up designed to showcase your product, contact Anne in AKGraphics at: anne@akgraphics.ie or call 059 913 3633

 

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What is an infographic?

Infographics are visual representations of information that you see everyday without realising. The washing instructions on your clothes tag, following the illustrated instructions for building your flatpack furniture, reading a map and even crossing the road at the light of the green man – these are all infographics.

Infographics are used to communicate information quickly, clearly and attract and maintain attention. They are particularly effective when you have a lot of text or number heavy content.

Without knowing the term infographics you might refer to these as; graphs / piecharts, illustrations, clip art, icons, symbols or information design but it’s up to us to understand that you mean infographics!

Goboof – The Alfa Portable Vaporizer 

Instructional infographics were designed for Goboof – The Alfa Portable Vaporizer, to be found within the designed User Manual to visually describe how to use this product.

AKGraphics designed the full packaging suite for Goboof. Our infographics illustrated the product’s many features; using the product, cleaning the product etc. The infographics for the downloadable User Manual were simplified to be used as web icons on www.goboof.com also.

Goboof-Infographics
University College Dublin

In AKGraphics we often design infographics for various Annual Reports to make complicated information or statistics visually attractive and easier to comprehend.

This is evident in our Annual Report designs for UCD Report of the President; 2013 and 2014. By using well designed infographics, important facts and figures quickly communicate a strong message. Condensing text content and applying good design with strong colourful graphics makes an annual report more digestible for its intended target market. We’ve also created information graphics for the Annual reports of UCD College of Business (UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School) in 2013 and 2014.

Infographics can have other uses like for web graphics, added to powerpoint presentations, email newsletters or on social media – and even many more!

UCD-Infographics-1

UCD-Infographics-2


Irish Lime, Clogrennane Lime Ltd (CRH Group)

Illustration infographics were designed to graphically visualise the complex step-by-step production process for Irish Lime, Clogrennane Lime Ltd.

This design request was part of a large display graphic stand AKGraphics designed for Clogrennane Lime for the National Ploughing Championships.

By designing an illustrated infographic solution of how Clogrennane Lime production works step by step this resulted in an eye catching graphic display for the audience attending their stand at the NPA Show.

Clear, effective well-designed communications makes a salesman’s job much easier at a busy trade show where high volumes of traffic exist, plus it can be a great talking point for a sale also. Strong infographics can captivate an intended audience quickly.

This particular infographic has been used for web graphics and also in a poster display, making the infographic very worthwhile for the client as it had multiple uses.

CL-Infographics
 The Department of Social Protection

The Department of Social Protection requested AKGraphics simplify text heavy statistics and a year’s worth of facts and figures regarding the full spend within each Department for 2014. The request from the Department was to illustrate an easy-to-read two-page solution of these statistics for the 2014 downloadable Annual Report.

The result from AKGraphics was a friendly colourful A3 sized infographic to portray all the information in a simplest way that made the information understandable for all ages. Key to the design of this detailed infographic was to illustrate all the different types of people that the Department of Social Protection assists on a daily basis in Ireland. Additional individual statistics were also created as infographics for The Department of Social Protection for use in house in powerpoint presentations or on social media.

Click here to see the annual report and our ‘2014 in review’ infographic on the Department of Social Protection’s website.

Infographics_Department_of_social_protection_7

Carlow Warehousing

Colourful, impactful website infographics were created for Carlow Warehousing, a logistics and e-commerce fulfilment company, to visually present the smart technology offered within their vast expanding company.

AKGraphics designed the new website and also a promotional brochure to market Carlow Warehousing to a wider audience. These infographics were used as a web banner on the new website. AKGraphics also created other web graphics used on the site.

CW-Infographics

 

Infographics are great for your business because they have so many varied uses, in reports, promotional material, web graphics, display graphics, apps, online newsletters, powerpoint presentations or even PDF presentations.

AKGraphics apply strategic thinking to develop an effective infographic by working as a team. We make sure everything fits together seamlessly as demonstrated within all of our work. If you would like to discuss infographic design in more detail, please do not hesitate to call Anne on 059 9133633. To see more samples of AKGraphics’ work click here to browse through our portfolio and check out our infographics section.

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Aquarium Guard – T. E. Laboratories

bcard

bottles

An interesting project for us from T. E. Laboratories. Aquarium Guard is a new product that will become a necessary purchase for all aquarium enthusiasts and professional fish-owners in the near future. We created stationery, packaging, test cards, instruction booklet, a web-holding page and bottle labels.

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Hot Irishman Ltd

This was a great project to work on, the packaging was made to look like an old leather bound book which opened to reveal a limited edition Writer’s Tears Cask Strength whiskey and two nosing glasses. A lovely gift set.

Another gift set in the Writer’s Tears range, this holds a Pot Still whiskey bottle and two tumblers.

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Hot Irishman Ltd

An exclusive product needed an exclusive presentation tube – uncoated paper and gold foil helped to achieve this. Each batch is limited in availability to 1,000 cases and each bottle is uniquely numbered and signed – what a great gift for the Irish Whiskey lover…

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T: +353 (0)59 9133633
E: info@akgraphics.ie

AKGraphics Ltd.
Equity House,
Deerpark Business
Complex, Dublin Road,
Carlow, R93 K7W4, Ireland.