BXP - April 2017 - 36

A D V E R T O R I A L

Brand igniter Tony Auston discusses how he
creates iconic labels for luxury wines and
spirits and why labels matter.
Want to know why the label on a bottle of fine

high quality digital printing, resulted in a fun and

wine is so important? Just ask Tony Auston who

handcrafted looking package.

has branded, packaged and labeled more than 350

BXP:

brands...so far. "Wine is a category like no other,

What role does labeling play in ROI?

Auston says. "Taking into account the myriad

Tony Auston:

labels lining retail shelves, it's important for

Gnarly Head® is a good example. The name rep-

designers to understand that each brand has its

resents a very old head-trained vine. Head training

own story. Our job is to communicate that story

was how vines were pruned and trained to grow

through conceptual package design; to create a

before the 20th Century. They can look quite gnarly.

brand that demands your attention and is recog-

Our mission was to evoke the graphic style from

nized for years to come."

that era, yet give it more mass-consumer appeal.

Since founding Auston Design Group in 1994,

We created a rough woodcut style vine illustration

Tony has worked with some of the world's most

and custom typography married to a bright, con-

admired wine and spirit brands, from large mul-

temporary color scheme. Over a ten-year period,

ti-brand companies like Diageo Chateau & Estate,

the brand became the largest selling Zinfandel in

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and Brown-Forman, to

the world. Gnarly Head is probably the most suc-

privately held brands and high-end boutique and

cessful wine brand that we've worked on, in terms

cult wineries. Here is our conversation with an

of overall sales.

icon-maker.

look than a $180 bottle. Knowing how the product

BXP

BXP:

will be sold is vital; whether it will be hand-sold

What is your first go-to brand for labels and

You have been creating and designing for brands

in high-end liquor stores, on-premise only, or on

why?

in the wine, beer and spirits categories for over

grocery store shelves. Whatever the case, the right

Tony Auston:

20 years. Why did you choose to specialize?

choice of substrate and texturing can give the label

We look for partners who can achieve quality, craft

Tony Auston:

a tactile quality that can make the consumer want

and performance. We are very particular about

I started before computers became the nucleus

to run their fingers across it.

our label papers. We print about 80% of our labels

of the design process. So my training emphasized

BXP:

on ESTATE LABEL® No. 8. It is the most versatile

concept, typography and, above all, craft. These

How do you tell a story with a label?

substrate available. The reasons are numerous;

skills honed a focused attention to detail that was

Tony Auston:

it has great ink hold-out which minimizes dot

ideal for branding luxury goods. Specialization

Wrangletown Cider was a really fun assignment.

gain, it takes foil stamping well and conforms to

allows me to acquire a deeper knowledge and

The owner, Pat Knittel, is a talented wine/cider

embossing and debossing, which can strain lower

understanding by observing the different ways

maker located in a very remote part of coastal

quality papers. Along with some amazing printing

consumers respond to the visual cues of what we

northern California. The town she grew up in was

companies, NEENAH Packaging has been a great

consider luxury.

once known as Wrangletown. In the late 1800s

partner in helping me achieve precisely the quality

BXP:

there were two women who were notorious for

my clients demand.

What are the most important packaging consid-

their very public disagreements, often "wrangling"

erations when branding wine and other spirits?

in the streets, which one day led a stagecoach

To learn more about

Tony Auston:

driver to say 'you oughta call this place Wran-

NEENAH Packaging

As part of the creative process, we first evaluate

gletown.' And it stuck. For the bottle's design we

and their work with

what niche we will represent-vintage, contem-

wanted to evoke a look and feel of a late 19th

designers like Tony, visit

porary, modern, traditional, humble, minimal,

Century label so we chose ESTATE LABEL® No.8 by

neenahpackaging.com

playful. Since luxury encompasses many price

NEENAH Packaging. We added a textural emboss

points it's important to consider the retail price of

to the background, with the type and illustrations

the product. While there are definitely crossovers,

debossing to simulate the wood type letterpress

a $45 bottle of wine will typically have a different

look typical of the era. All this, combined with


http://www.neenahpackaging.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of BXP - April 2017

Bxp - April 2017
Contents
Editor’s Letter
The Scene
Chief Experience Officer Series: Spicing It Up
Going High End
Makeover Challenge 2017
Using Design to Engage From Screen to Shelf
The Debate
The Toolbox: Technologies That Speed Innovation and Optimize Marketing Solutions
Index of Advertisers
The List
BXP - April 2017 - Intro
BXP - April 2017 - BB1
BXP - April 2017 - BB2
BXP - April 2017 - Bxp - April 2017
BXP - April 2017 - Cover2
BXP - April 2017 - 1
BXP - April 2017 - Contents
BXP - April 2017 - 3
BXP - April 2017 - 4
BXP - April 2017 - 5
BXP - April 2017 - Editor’s Letter
BXP - April 2017 - 7
BXP - April 2017 - The Scene
BXP - April 2017 - 9
BXP - April 2017 - 10
BXP - April 2017 - 11
BXP - April 2017 - 12
BXP - April 2017 - 13
BXP - April 2017 - Chief Experience Officer Series: Spicing It Up
BXP - April 2017 - 15
BXP - April 2017 - 16
BXP - April 2017 - 17
BXP - April 2017 - 18
BXP - April 2017 - 19
BXP - April 2017 - Going High End
BXP - April 2017 - 21
BXP - April 2017 - 22
BXP - April 2017 - 23
BXP - April 2017 - Makeover Challenge 2017
BXP - April 2017 - 25
BXP - April 2017 - 26
BXP - April 2017 - 27
BXP - April 2017 - 28
BXP - April 2017 - 29
BXP - April 2017 - Using Design to Engage From Screen to Shelf
BXP - April 2017 - 31
BXP - April 2017 - 32
BXP - April 2017 - 33
BXP - April 2017 - The Debate
BXP - April 2017 - 35
BXP - April 2017 - 36
BXP - April 2017 - 37
BXP - April 2017 - 38
BXP - April 2017 - 39
BXP - April 2017 - 40
BXP - April 2017 - 41
BXP - April 2017 - 42
BXP - April 2017 - 43
BXP - April 2017 - 44
BXP - April 2017 - 45
BXP - April 2017 - 46
BXP - April 2017 - 47
BXP - April 2017 - 48
BXP - April 2017 - 49
BXP - April 2017 - 50
BXP - April 2017 - The Toolbox: Technologies That Speed Innovation and Optimize Marketing Solutions
BXP - April 2017 - 52
BXP - April 2017 - 53
BXP - April 2017 - 54
BXP - April 2017 - Index of Advertisers
BXP - April 2017 - The List
BXP - April 2017 - Cover3
BXP - April 2017 - Cover4
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