SC Johnson Family Economics Blog
Friday, September 24, 2010

Homemade Package Design | Family Economics

By Cathe

Most of my graphic design career has included quite a bit of package design for various clients. Wine labels, food and product packaging can be the best part of print design. Spend a little time on creative blogs today and you’ll find that package design no longer lies in the hands of professionals.

With the availability of scrapbook supplies and materials, excellent reuse and repurposing ideas as well as the personal computer and desktop printer, package design has taken on a whole new dimension. Homemade or plain-looking store-bought goods can be easily, inexpensively and uniquely embellished to a whole new level. Working with multiple items in assembly line fashion cannot only be very productive but often quite fun. For quick and wonderful graphics, the internet is full of free digital images that you can utilize for creating your own beautiful packaging.

Here are a few examples that are not so much gift wrapping but unique handmade package design for packaging or repackaging of items for gifting, sale, silent auction donation and more:

• Purchase pretty French soap bars in bulk at the wholesale club store and remove them from their boring box. Band wrap with cut sections corrugated paper torn from between the papers of a shipping box. Leave the imperfections of the paper that didn’t tear well. Tie with ribbon and finish with a wax seal and "product information" card handwritten on a repurposed blank paper hang-tag. Alternatively, place the bars into individual, low-cost organza bags and add a beautiful tag.

• Wrap jars of homemade applesauce with bands cut from pages of an old book. Cover the lids with a round of burlap securing with twine at the neck. Attach a folded card full of tips for using applesauce as a replacement in baking recipes.

• Buy large bags of dried bean soup mix and divide into smaller Ziploc® Brand storage bags. Print off fun graphics and soup instructions onto cardstock for folding over the top of the bag and stapling into a header card. Tuck the bag and a pair of soup mugs into a small handle bag with a matching graphic label attached.

• Plain, blank journals can be "cigar-banded" with most any type of interesting paper from wallpaper scraps to a row of raffle tickets. Secure with a seal or label.

• For homemade spirits, dip bottle tops in colored beeswax and allow to drip down the necks as it cools. Hand draw and color one label design, copy and print to label stock adhering to all the bottles.

Have you created your own packaging? Tell us about it!

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Looking for more great ideas? Visit our Green Choices blog for eco-friendly tips and activities to try with your family.

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Every year, millions of plastic trigger bottles end up in landfills. Concentrated refills use less packaging, decrease shipping impacts and reduce waste. Small green choices can make a big difference.

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