One of my largest clients in the past few years has been the Israeli Coins and Medals Corporation (ICMC). I have designed several e-commerce websites for them, and was consequently also hired to design packages for a new line of products – the Dove of Peace gold bar.
The company has had several drafts for the package commissioned from other designers, but was unsatisfied with the results. With a major numismatics fair approaching, time was pressing to find a solution. They wanted a package that was practical and stylish at the same time. It also needed to be strongly associated with Israel, and with Jerusalem.
The package included two elements – a inner envelope and a sleeve, and so I felt that I should create some contrast between the two, as if the envelope is “peeking” from within. Knowing that the package was to be quite small in size (about the size of a cigarette pack), I decided to keep it simple. I wanted it to have one powerful element as a focal point, and nothing more. I believed that sticking to these two principals would provide a stylish result.
I submitted three different concepts. The first had a jet black background, and an image of the gold bar, slanted and glistening with light shining behind it. It had nothing more on the front other than the company logo and the product name, both in gold foil. I suggested that the inner envelope be made of textured golden paper. This was somewhat reminiscent of quality chocolate packages, and I sort of liked this association.
The second concept had a gold foil pattern on it, based on the Star of David shape. It had a royal blue background, and the inner envelope was to be made of high quality white stock, producing the ever so Israeli white and blue color combination.
The third concept was on a lighter note. It featured a stylized illustration of Jerusalem on a white background, inspired by old mosaic depictions of the holy city. This time the blue was on the inside, using deep blue quality recycled stock.
The ICMC managers liked concept A, but thought that the inner golden paper was a little over the top, and that we should tone it down a little. They also liked the Star of David pattern from concept B. And so we decided to make the inner envelope a metallic matte silver, with the pattern overlayed in a glossy UV varnish. This gave the envelope a subtle, light responsive texture.
The result was stunning. A package which doesn’t yell “luxury!”, but rather whispers it softly. In addition, I also created a few limited edition sleeves, featuring colorful collages.
I also designed a certificate of authenticity, to be inclosed together with each bar of fine gold. It featured a water mark of the ancient walls of Jerusalem.
In order to complete everything in time for the coin fair, I had to put in a few sleepless nights. This paid off since the product was a success and drew a lot of attention.