BIGFACE's Otherworldly Packaging
by Chloe Gordon on 02/23/2023 | 5 Minute Read
Brandmonger was commissioned with developing not only an otherworldly brand for BIGFACE but otherworldly packaging. Our goal was to push beyond the boundaries of coffee packaging into uncharted territories imagining the impossible, with renders too good to be true. The resulting concept truly seemed just that... impossible, but we forged ahead searching far and wide for a manufacturer that would take on the challenge of creating a one for one recreation of a box that seemed it could only exist in the digital realm. When all hope seemed eclipsed by technical absurdities and manufacturing constraints, we were rescued by Zenpack. With a new alliance, came a new hope. And pushing past a gauntlet of design- imposed obstacles and stringent construction constraints, Zenpack sourced the perfect materials, innovated embossing techniques, and did the unthinkable: They took our impossible box, and brought it into the physical world.
The emboss proved our first challenge. The dimensionality we had conceptualized in the renders, combined with the thickness of material, required a not-so-standard precision tool to push the logos far enough out of the surface to create the desired effect. We tested this effect over 30 times with different inks, coatings, and materials until we found the perfect three that would become our Silver, Black, and White boxes.?
Unfortunately, the depth of the logo emboss at scale created a problem of its own. The embossed areas could be pushed back in if mishandled. We explored beyond packaging and enlisted a special technique similar to puff embroidery, filling the negative space with paper pulp, ensuring that the raised areas stay raised, forever.
That covered the front of the box, but where other boxes may rely on the front to do all the work, this box needed to pull its weight from any angle. Painstaking precision was paid to every facet, using double folded corners that are knocked flat to create perfect edges, seams, and closures resulting in an effect usually reserved for luxury electronics packaging.
We used a matte PP film to soften the feeling of these larger-than-life boxes, bringing a premium aspect to the finished products. An anti-scuff coating ensures that a material like the mirrored paper, which would otherwise show every scratch or mark, remained pristine after handling.
Finally, we developed The Failsafe Security sticker—which serves a secondary purpose of displaying the roast date—through many iterations to deliver the perfect tearing experience worthy of any ASMR enthusiast.
The result is a box so audaciously ambitious it must be seen to be believed. Every aspect of the box was considered, ensuring a second to none customer experience in the coffee space. Even the inner walls of the box are infused with brand personality. Upon breaking the Failsafe seal and lifting the top of the box, the customer is greeted with “WE HAVE LIFTOFF”.
We developed a completely custom bag to fit the unexpected proportions of the box. The bag stands out in a crowded coffee market with an unconventional landscape orientation, resealing zipper, and tear top. The tolerances for the bag corner radii were so specific, consistently precise production required a custom mold to stamp and further fuse the seams, ensuring an airtight seal. A one-way degassing valve, affectionately titled the “airlock” allows for any gases produced by the coffee oxidization process to escape to maintain peak freshness.
We experimented with various transparent materials and treatments for the perfect balance between translucent and opaque, creating a space-age visual effect for the BF-IO.F (Filter) & BF-IO.E. (Espresso). For BF-X (Blends), we took a different approach and utilized a mylar-type material to create a bag that could bounce light and even serve as a mirror for your smile.
The exterior labels are the one temporal aspect to the packaging and are designed to be rotated as coffees change seasonally. But that didn’t mean they couldn’t feel special through the use of a combination of Pantones, finishes, and substrates to maintain brand potency.
BF-IO.F - ISOLATED ORIGIN FILTER (SILVER BOX ? WHITE BAG)
BF-IO.E - ISOLATED ORIGIN ESPRESSO (BLACK BOX ? BLACK BAG)
BF-X - MULTI-ORIGIN (WHITE BOX ? SILVER BAG)
Each of the three boxes is designed to give the customer a slightly different experience.
When the Silver Box—which obscures a lighter roasted filter coffee—is opened, the eyes are met with a pleasing and unexpected semi-translucent white bag, offering the perfect foil to the reflective outer shell.
The matte Black Box, on the other hand, contains an espresso roast, doubling down on the dark side to reveal a semi-translucent black bag.
The White Box holds a multi-origin blend of coffees, delighting the beholder with an intensely reflective foil bag that distorts and bends light like a wormhole.
The Labels on the exterior of these boxes are designed to give just enough information to the consumer: Coffee Farm/Name, Tasting Notes, Country of Origin, and Process. For Full Analysis the consumer is directed to a unique QR code that leads to more information around the coffee including satellite imagery of the farm.
Each exterior label is hand-applied using a custom-made jig, ensuring precise placement across all boxes.
Each of the three bags have classification demarcations around the title and type of coffee contained. A Category specific QR code leads to an archive of similar coffees, allowing for the consumer or their friend to quickly find the latest coffee in orbit.
In the NBA bubble of 2020, out of a passion for coffee and community, Miami Heat All-Star Jimmy Butler began selling coffee to other players out of his hotel room under the name, Big Face Coffee. Taking the internet by storm, Jimmy’s support among friends and fans was overwhelming, and his side hustle began to take shape.
It was at this point that Brandmonger was enlisted to contextualize this idea born in the Bubble, and the passion Jimmy has for coffee, into the brand now known as BIGFACE.
BIGFACE is a culture-shifting coffee brand simultaneously providing specialty coffee to the connoisseur and introducing the mainstream consumer to top-tier coffee. With an attention to craft, sourcing, story, and innovation, every BIGFACE product will invite the consumer to share in and share with others a love for coffee and the community around it.
Coffee is the common thread woven into the very fabric of our lives. A cup of coffee can be an embrace between old friends, a bridge between strangers, a conduit for creativity, and for many, a solid reason to get up on a Monday. Coffee drives us, inspires us, connects us, and revives us. Our vision is a world with better coffee, big dreams, and bigger smiles.