Wine Label Design

Back in the 1920’s, when Jimmy Meleri surreptitiously sold his wine for a shilling a bottle outside a Yallingup dance-hall in Western Australia, he could never have imagined the importance of product presentation decades later. There was no need, as Jimmy had the strongest sales advantage a producer could wish for – a monopoly.

Today, the Australian wine industry is dominated by a powerful oligopoly, with the remaining small-to-medium sized producers struggling to make their wines more saleable without sacrificing profit. To achieve a commercial return on investment, producers rely heavily on consistently producing a sound product, and in turn, a brand where success is dependent upon the retention value of its name and the “pick me!” visual impact of a well-crafted wine label – in other words, its ‘image’ – the emotional bond which helps secure a purchase.

3drops is a Mount Barker based boutique wine producer that has successfully nurtured and developed the all important bond with a client base that appreciates premium wines branded with a left-field skew. From the outset, REB Design recognized the need to develop a memorable brand name and culture, which would afford the range strong shelf presence in a highly competitive sector. The wine notes on the bottles set the brand apart. Instead of the traditional winemaker’s scribbles on the rear of the bottle, REB Design developed Haiku style poetry which takes pride of place on the front labels to reinforce the brand culture as well as to describe the contents within. The efforts secured a strong following with an urbane demographic across Australia, as well as in the UK, Hong Kong and Canada.

Producing an icon wine is not only a rare challenge for the winemaker, but also for the company entrusted with the development of its brand. Sandalford’s Prendiville Reserve celebrates the development of limited releases of ultra premium wines. Proud yet refined, the elegant labels with their exquisite typography, faux wax seal and subtle embellishments, pay testimony to the Prendiville family who acquired Sandalford Wines in the early 1990’s.

Following in its footsteps was the re-branding of the company’s premium Margaret River wine ranges. Now branded the ‘Sandalford Estate Reserve’ and the 'Sandalford Margaret River' ranges, the labels draw upon a combination of classic-contemporary cues, which include the use of elegant typography, subtle paper embellishments and a generosity of space. Highly applauded by the trade and consumers alike, the re-branding marked a significant milestone in Sandalford’s marketing strategy in its domestic and international markets, and underscores a visual culture that is unquestionably, ‘Sandalford’.

The development of a wine brand principally for the Asian market is more often than not, poorly handled. Palandri ‘The Chairman’ wine package was developed for 3 Oceans in Margaret River to have strong appeal in a sector dominated by premium French wines in the Chinese market. It is unabashedly ultra-premium and unique, and was primarily designed to appeal to Chinese customers who appreciate contemporary-classic styling. From the beautiful bottle decorated in a delicate bronze pattern about its entire circumference, to the highly restrained soft paper labels, complete with faux wax seal ‘stamped’ with the Roman numeral I to highlight its iconic status, The Chairman makes an undeniable gift-giving statement and has secured a strong foothold in the China market.