Achieving a timeless design, whether in graphic design, interior design, fashion design or even car design, can be a feat that most designers only dream of. In a world full of trend, popularity and fad, creating something ageless can be a difficult task, especially when everyone is a critic.
But what gets a consumer to continually purchase iconic brands based solely on their package designs?
This past holiday season, Coca-Cola released their annual holiday can decked out in white. Pretty, right? Apparently the American public didn’t think so. Consumers were so upset by the change to the timeless can, regardless of the product bubbling inside, that Coca-Cola immediately recalled the cans and quickly replaced the white with their iconic red. Could the timeless package design conundrum be answered with a simple “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it?”
Regardless of Coke’s misstep this past holiday, there is a plethora of great examples from brands that have embraced their timeless images through packaging.
- The Coca-Cola Bottle:
Outside of their above-mentioned “uh-oh” moment, Coke has done a tremendous job in the timeless category. With powerful color choices (their iconic red) and familiar easy-grip shape, the Coke bottle has become so much of an American image that even Andy Warhol said, “Liz Taylor knows it, the President knows it, the bum knows it, and you know it.”
- Tiffany & Co.:
What woman doesn’t hope for the day to open up that tiny blue box and find a stellar piece of silver sitting on a plush bed of white cotton? The Tiffany & Company notable blue box has been a staple in the fashion industry since 1906 and continues to generate lots of excitement from New York to Tokyo.
- TDK Discs:
I will argue that this is one the of the most understated classic and timeless package designs in the electronic world. Outside of Apple, TDK has met the world’s needs with wonderfully utilitarian CD and DVD spindles and jewel cases.
Say what you will about smoking, Philip Morris U.S.A. has come to know their consumer’s sensibility to design incredibly well. So well, in fact, that even with the growing regulations on cigarette packaging, simply saying the words red, gold, or silver to any gas station clerk will automatically get you the brand.
Miss Barbie has graced the shelves of toy stores since March of 1959. With the notable pink and clear molded plastic of her seamless box, little girls all over the world have fallen out of strollers reaching for the doll.
- Kellogg’s Cereals:
Whether it be Corn Flakes or Rice Krispies, each cereal box that Kellogg’s Cereals has put out into the market since 1906 has driven consumer purchase. And not only in brand messaging, but in the overall character development that starts on the box. Where else was Tony the Tiger supposed to tell us that Frosted Flakes are “Grrrrreat!”
- Wonder Bread:
The wonder of Wonder Bread definitely lives in the brand’s color selection. The primary colors pop off of the stark white, giving the brand a history of over 90 years.
- Budweiser Beer:
The history of Anheuser-Busch’s timeless beer bottle actually began with placing the brand name on the bottle. Many bottles over 130 years ago simply used a plain, unbranded bottle for their lagers, but founder Adolphus Busch knew better, establishing the bottle and brand as icons in American minds.
- Chanel No. 5:
The government of France has reported that, on average, a bottle of Chanel No. 5 sells every thirty seconds. But that’s no surprise. Not only is the scent a signature in the fashion world, the bottle, rumored to be designed after a whiskey decanter, has maintained its crystalline shape since 1924.
- The Starbucks Cup:
With its iconic sleeve and lid, the Starbucks cup has become one of the world’s most recognizable and loved shapes. Although not the first in its realm, the coffee purveyor saw an opportunity to brand the sleeve and cup with life-affirming messages and notable quotes, allowing it to rise above their competitors.
If you’re wondering what it takes to create impactful and memorable package design, contact us today.
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