30 January 2011

Run Rabbit, Run!

Chinese New Year of the Rabbit is upon us and this year we decided to put together a set of Hong Bao's. These are traditionally red packets containing money given out during family or social gatherings during Chinese New Year or at weddings.

There are no clear sources which trace the origin of the red envelope tradition although it is said during the Qing Dynasty the elderly would thread coins with a red string. The money was called yāsuì qián and was believed to have protected the elderly from sickness and death. The yāsuì qián was replaced by red envelopes when printing presses became more common.

So, bucking tradition we developed a series of silver 'red' packets which featured 3 different tangram rabbits. Tangram (seven boards of skill) originated in China and is a dissection puzzle game using seven shapes. The objective of the game was to form an outline of an object. There are approximately 5,900 different shapes that can be achieved, we managed 3!

25 January 2011

A Starfish is Born

At the end of last year we were approached by a charity organisation based in Ubud, Bali. They ran a small language centre offering free English classes to Balinese children as well as paid private conversation classes in English, French and Japanese for adult members of the local Balinese community.
Devoted teachers from America, Canada and Australia joined together in support of Starfish and have been volunteering their years of education and experience to this common goal.
Their existing identity only appealed to the younger audience and with the growing number of adults, they came to us for advice and help.
Working for charities can be an exhaustive and sometimes labour intensive task, but on this occasion they were a joy to work with. Out of the several identities presented, the chosen version captured a whimsical, lighthearted feel which was inherent in their previous identity.
For more details visit their facebook fanpage.

20 January 2011

Letterpress, making an impression

There is something profoundly inspiring seeing true letterpress examples, even more so to acutally feel, touch and hold them. Maybe it is the notalgia of lead metal type, or that it evokes the very essence of design and print in its purest form, whatever it may be this dying trade has seemed to have found a resurgence in wedding collateral. Here are a couple of great examples by SMOCK based out of NY, we found them during our research for our Quentin's wedding invitation.

If you decide to go down the Letterpress route, the biggest challenge is to find a printer who can still do it. After some searching we found a printer based in Singapore who were willing to dust off their old Heidelberg and give it a try. PRENSA were very eager. Unfortunatley they did not anticipate the complications they would have rennovating their old machine, meanwhile the clock was ticking, the wedding couldn't wait. We had to go with a more conventional method of printing using debossing to achieve a similar technique. Still, next time we'll know where to go!

04 January 2011

Fine Palate Packaging

Fine Palate, approached us to help them develop a new line of food packaging. Having established themselves as the leading gourmet catering company in Singapore guests soon began to inquire about their line of food items for home entertaining.

One of the chllenges for us was to deliver a concept that not only looked appealing on the grocery store shelves, but also practical for the buyer and Food Palate. This involved a great deal of research into the packaging materials from recyclability to snap freezing methods.

The creative was the easy part, here are some of the directions.