As a new business venture, founders Michael and Jennifer of Aethereal Inc. were unsure where to start with their crystal kit packaging. They knew they wanted flexibility to accommodate various crystal shapes and sizes and needed to create the best packaging that worked for direct to consumer selling and in a retail environment. With this type of product, cookie-cutter solutions just aren’t available and they were excited to start their custom packaging journey with Knockout, one of the top sustainable packaging companies in North America. Read more below about the Knockout Aethereal project.
Aethereal aims to inspire everyone in the world to create the life they desire by bringing tangible reminders of their own potential into the rituals of daily life. Their goal is to become the world’s leading brand in self empowerment, self care, and wellness by making crystal magic an integral part of life’s everyday moments. With mindfully curated crystal kits, Aethereal brings joy, positivity, and inspiration to even the most mundane aspects of life, all while striving to limit their environmental footprint and leave the world in better condition. They needed the best packaging to align with their brand values and essence.
With a unique product, Aethereal knew that they were not going to be able to use generic packaging. Their crystals are various sizes, shapes, and weights. New to the packaging process, Aethereal needed help to design the best packaging that would stand out from competitors, look luxurious and hold the weight of their crystals. With their competitors using packaging that did not reflect the spirit or mysticism of crystals, nor considering overall environmental impact, Aethereal knew that being sustainability focused throughout this process would allow them to shine and be true to their value of limiting environmental impact and bringing joy and positivity to the world.
To deliver on this complex design, Knockout used our highly consultative approach to determine what the priorities were for Aethereal and how to best utilize their budget for stunning results.
Flexible design – Taking a modular approach to this design meant that the team at Aethereal would be able to configure their packaging on the fly by adding/removing inserts to fit the particular crystals for any kit. With Aethereal facing many supply chain issues with getting the products, the crystal supplier being changed, etc. the team at Knockout knew flexibility was key.
Spending money in the right places – As a start-up with big dreams, it was important that Knockout guided the Aethereal team on how to spend their packaging dollars most effectively. They had a healthy budget to work with and we wanted to ensure that the end result was reflective of the high quality product that they sell.
Keeping flexibility at the forefront of design process, the beauty of the modular design is that we were able to tweak the design as things changed. During the Knockout Aethereal project, a solution was created that would work not just for their launch, but also as they introduce new kits and continue to grow their kit offering. Creating the various compartments allows the smaller items to be contained and avoids damage from crystals rubbing together.
With such a heavy product, Knockout advised Aethereal on the correct paper stock to use. Although it’s a bit more expensive, the results are phenomenal with the box mimicking a rigid style box. Spending a little extra on the more expensive paper meant scaling back a little on the print, and only printing the sleeves instead of the whole box. When working on the design holistically, it allows us to deliver a solution that exceeds our clients’ expectations.
The graphic design was done by our designer who wanted to emulate a spiritual and mystical feeling, embodying the ‘Crystal Magic’ that Aethereal stands for. Knowing that the base tray would be white, we incorporated white into the Aethereal logo to ensure that the design looked cohesive. Due to the size and for color consistency, offset print was used along with a soft touch water based coating to design the best packaging for Aethereal.
The assembly of these kits is quite simple – the base is made of a large tray with 3 smaller trays fitting inside and creating the compartments. These glueless trays are environmentally friendly and create sturdy walls around the product for protection during shipping.
As an alternative to traditional rigid packaging, this crystal kit shines as an example of how sustainability and luxury can work together. This kit uses minimal glue and can be reused or recycled through curbside recycling programs. The graphic design to matches the fun, airy feel of the Aethereal brand and has a totally different look than competitors allowing for differentiation as Aethereal enters the market. Aethereal also has the flexibility to use this packaging for any of their crystal kits, the perfect solution for a growing start-up. Through this project, Aethereal can deliver a wonderful unboxing experience to their clients and the Knockout Aethereal project was deemed a success!