How to Create the Ideal Box for a Wine or Spirit Brand

As you’re considering the packaging for your wine or spirits brand, you’ll rightfully invest the most time and energy in the bottle itself. So anything else, like a box, might be an afterthought. But you should give that time and energy as well.

How should you think about the design of the box relative to the bottle? Should it replicate the design, or enhance or extend it in some way? Is it an object in and of itself?

While the bottle may rightfully receive the lion’s share of attention when it comes to the packaging of your wine or spirits brand, it’s important not to overlook the significance of the box.

Wine or Spirit Gift Boxes for Different Occasions

Let’s explore several situations where you’ll need to create a box for your product. To clarify, we’re not talking about a shipping carton or case but a box that envelops a single bottle. These are commonly referred to as gift boxes in the industry, even if they’re not meant for special occasions.

In some markets, you’ll be required to package the bottle in a box for regulatory reasons. For example, our client’s Crazy Cock whisky brand was primarily destined for sale in India, which meant it needed a box to hold the bottle. The brand had such a rich story to tell, and we designed the bottle and label with lavish typography and beautifully detailed illustration.

Covering the bottle with a simple logo-stamped box would have obliterated the power of the packaging at retail. So we specified an inexpensive, off-the-shelf cardboard box and created a wrap-around design that repurposes the label graphics. The solution was no more expensive than a standard printed box but added tremendous value and is very attractive on the shelf.

Some wine and spirits brands position their products for gift giving or special occasions, in which case an elegant box is called for. Our client Graham’s, the legendary, family-owned producer of port, needed a true gift box for their Bicentenary Late Bottled Vintage edition. Inspired by the marbled endpapers of antique books in the company’s museum, we commissioned a paper artist to create one-of-a-kind designs using a classic marbling technique.

We wrapped standard cardboard tubes with these gorgeous gold-accented designs to create a special box that needs no additional embellishment for gift-giving. The client wanted to create a buzz in the market for the product and saw tremendous sales as a result of the packaging. We are now working with them to extend the same marbled paper aesthetic in various color schemes to their entire portfolio.

And then there are times when a brand wants to celebrate a limited-edition vintage or blend that’s aimed primarily at aficionados, collectors, or friends of the company. Portuguese wine producer ITER came to us with a request for a superior gift box to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the winemaker’s personal brand.

We created an exquisite wooden gift case that resembles a memory box with printed inserts. The bottle itself is graced by a metal medallion that is based on hand-sculpted artwork. The company built a public relations campaign around this unique gift package, which was produced in a super-limited edition for friends and family.

For wine and spirits brands, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to stand out in a crowded market — especially when everyone turns to the same materials (such as standard wooden cases in the wine category). A gift box helps expand on the brand story because it allows more real estate for the text and illustration. It elevates the brand’s presence at retail — especially in the valuable duty-free market. And it can be a vehicle for added value when the box includes a tempting giveaway like a glass, corkscrew, stopper, or similar item. Consumers love the experience of finding a “toy” inside the box.

We can help your team decide if a gift box makes sense for your brand — and create something truly irresistible to consumers. Let’s start a conversation.

Book a discovery call today!

Let’s create something beautiful.