Want an original way to say you’re sorry? Why not give a picnic‽

This is a bit of different post to usual and it’s not going to happen very often but we had a big deadline today so I thought it would be appropriate to talk about some of my own work.

The brief was originally for a YCN competition and it was, quite simply, to design the perfect picnic for Marks & Spencer. After several brainstorms (mind-maps, idea generations whatever the most PC term for it is) I settled on designing a picnic to say sorry.

It struck me that there actually aren’t many products specifically for this purpose on sale if you wanted to avoid the well-trodden bunch of flowers route. So, I had a gap in the market (I should mention at this point that it’s not an ‘Apprentice’ style competition and we’re not marked on how many would actually be sold but more on there being an original concept behind our designs) and from this point I had to start considering different ways I could communicate this idea of apologising.

I won’t bore you with my entire process but final route I settled on was a picnic that aids the process of making up when couples have had a fallout (specifically couples for reasons that will become apparent when you have seen my picnic). This seemed an ideal approach as the product itself is a time consuming activity so this could be taken advantage of. In a sense not only is the consumer buying a product but they are also buying time with the person they’ve upset that can be used to put the issue right again.

The next thing to consider was how the whole thing would look and work. I knew that I wanted the picnic to be eaten in stages as I could then add phrases to each part of the picnic to assist the reconciliation. This meant that the outer box would have to be quite tall and thin for the boxes inside, with the food in, to work as layers. I also decided at this point that I wanted it to feel quite personal as the receiver would want to feel as though it was chosen especially for them. To try and get this message across I decided to hand render a lot of the copy including the phrases on the top of each food box.

So this was the final outer packaging I designed:

Which had a label attached to the handle with a simple tick box system documenting some of the possible things you could be apologising for (click for a larger image):

And this was the inside packaging. The phrases would be read as you reached each new layer with the first being on the champagne included in the picnic:

All of this culminates in the final box:

Where the phrase reads ‘Kiss & Make Up’ and the box is opened to reveal two mints – which will hopefully complete the reconciliation.

I hope that all made sense and you enjoyed seeing a bit of my own work for a change, if not please feel free to ask questions so I can clarify. Any general feedback is also appreciated so I can learn from my project.

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2 thoughts on “Want an original way to say you’re sorry? Why not give a picnic‽

  1. Your pictures do the project much more justice, as you can accurately see the dimension and texture of the green. I think your wine label should have the same border style as all the other elements (double black?). Great idea!

    1. Great feedback thank you! I really should have allowed more time to craft the entire range and it’s something I’ll definitely learn from. As for the bottle label I completely agree and had got a design that was more cohesive but sadly my illustrator rendering skills let me down and so I couldn’t implement it without squashing the text and making it illegible. If i’d have crafted that aswell this could’ve been avoided so I’ll definitely take that onboard! Thanks!

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