How do you emboss a carton without disrupting the exacting dimensions enforced by the supply chain? The answer: an optical illusion.

Every year, Bombay Sapphire produces a promotional carton for the travel retail and duty-free sectors as part of its marketing in the run-up to Christmas.

The design, by consultancy Webb deVlam, uses a Fresnel lens to give the illusion of large embossed bubbles on the carton without affecting the dimensions of the pack. API Group created the lenses using a foil laminate technique, which creates the illusion of a 3D dome. This is the first time the technique has been used for packaging in the drinks sector.

"Everyone's reaction to the pack is similar it's that 'got to touch it' factor," says Webb deVlam marketing director Tim Corvin.

The design had to be arresting enough to stop busy shoppers passing through retailers on their way to catch a plane, yet respect the heritage of Bombay Sapphire. As well as adding interest, the bubbles or droplets highlight and magnify key elements of the pack such as the botanicals used to produce the gin.

The pack was rolled out globally in November, along with complementary PoS material, which used the same design elements as the carton. According to brand owner Bacardi Global Brands, it was the best ever performing gift pack for Bombay Sapphire in travel retail, achieving more than double the normal monthly sales.

Focus On Packaging