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Beck's art label bottles have featured images from artists like M.I.A., Yoko Ono, Damien Hirst, and even Andy Warhol, but the beer giant's newest art label does something—it's a different medium altogether. Beck's enlisted the Auckland-based designers at Gyro Constructivists, borrowing the form of Thomas Edison's wax cylinders, to build a custom lathe cutter to record music onto a bottle. The result sounds better than the cylinders from Edison's day, but requires a rather uncommon player to play back. The playable bottle is an almost all-New Zealand production, featuring a noisy tune from Auckland's Ghost Wave.

When Evangelia Koutsovoulou moved from rural Greece to Milan, Italy her cooking suffered. She realized city cooks didn't have access to the same herbs founds in the mediterranean country side, so she launched a Kickstarter campaign to start distributing fresher Sage, Bay Leaves, Oregano, and Thyme.

But because she's not the biggest fan of cameras, and Kickstarter campaigns require a video element, she commissioned friends to tell the story of her two-year search for the best herbs in a simple but impressive animated short. Koutsovoulou also designed a strong branding identity for the herbs: each package is shipped in a small foldable bag with a cleanly designed name and information card affixed to the front. A tiny yellow sun at the bottom of the card contrasts the blue sans serif type, and along with the market-style bag, connotes freshness. 

Pledge some money and become an official "Oregano Tester"


As competition in the beer cooler gets tougher, breweries big and small are making changes to package design to catch more eyes. Already this year, beer titans Budweiser, Miller, Heineken, and Sam Adams have all announced major makeovers of their can and bottle looks. 

In South America, Brazilian beer brand Antarctica made a big change to its packaging just in time for this year's annual Carnivale by adding a scannable subway ticket directly onto its can's label. To support the program it worked with the city of Rio de Janeiro and installed "beer turnstiles" at major train stations that scan and collect cans for recycling in one simple motion. Riders simply save their last empty or find a discarded can for a free ride home. The campaign is a social initiative as well, intended to cut down on litter and drunk drivers. [via Adverblog]

Photo by: Matthew Shlian | Apophenia

Studio photos by Cullen Stephenson

Paper engineer Matthew Shlian designs fancy packaging for big name brands, works on origami projects for the National Science Foundation, and, lucky for us, creates limited-edition compositions for the Ghostly Store.

He's just issued Apophenia Formations in a limited edition of 25 pieces to each of the four compositions for a total of 100 pieces. It's available now in the Ghostly Store.

What's Apophenia all about? It means "the experience of seeing meaningful patterns or connections in random or meaningless data" according to Shlian, who we will take at his word as he's a professor.

See Ghostly's video feature on Shlian.

You've seen dozens of branding identities for new hoppy craft beers, or the latest micro-distilled Rye whiskey, but it's not every day a Slovenian brandy makes waves in the design world.

Design firm Loni DBS has just completed a new identity for an organic brandy called Doctor Shutz 38 Herbal Essences. The brandy takes its numerical name from the 38 herbs grown in Slovenian wine country and used in the recipe. The design firm chose a pharmaceutical theme, complete with green cross imagery, a typographic hierarchy reminiscent of medicine bottles, and a small pamphlet included in each package that's familiar to anyone who has ever received a prescription. Also worth noting, most of the bottle's copy is also printed in Braille.

Coffee changes lives. Today, many of us can't imagine life without it. But cafés where they put the swirl in your latte? Not always worth the effort. For those who prefer a more straightforward cup of artisanal coffee, brewed at home from beans delivered straight to your door, there’s Regular Coffee. Seriously, that’s the name of Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Rowster Coffee’s new subscription service. Regular Coffee offers a convenient way to purchase and experience your daily black magic.  

How it works: Subscribe online via RegularCoffee.com. Each month a perfectly portioned 30-day supply of specialty brew for one arrives. Order as much as you want. Change up your subscription or cancel at any time. Easy.

Where it’s from: Regular Coffee is grown on small farms in Huehuetenango, Guatemala and then roasted after hours at Rowster’s micro-roaster café. Packaged in a special tube to keep it fresh, it is then shipped from Grand Rapids to your doorstep. A pretty valiant crack at farm-to-mug if you ask us.

What you pay: 20 bucks per tube.

How it tastes: According to the folks at Rowster, Regular Coffee has "a lightly-roasted yet full-bodied taste with a caramel sweetness and dried fruity aroma."

Why you’ll feel good: You’re supporting small farms and small business while enjoying a damn good cup of coffee. Special Agent Cooper would totally have this delivered to his hotel room in Twin Peaks.

Bonus: Clean, minimal packaging. Futura Bold type on a cardboard tube just feels honest, modern, and kinda Wes Anderson-ish.