Archive for the 'Personal Favorites' Category

it’s good AND good for you!

this little gem is my husband’s new favorite food (yep, that’s right, there’s a Mr. PublixPackaging now!). well, truly the vanilla flavor is his all-time fav, but the Publix I stopped at on my way home today was all out. Personally, though, i prefer the blueberry on the rare occasion that a yogurt mood strikes me.

the packaging design is an example of one of the first layouts we saw several years ago. it lacks the “punny” tagline, and instead relies upon a sketch of the item’s primary ingredient (in this case, a trio of blueberries). it’s also an example of Publix’s tendency to focus on the item’s descriptive word instead of the item name itself. i realize several very educated and experience people likely articulated a system long ago for choosing which words to highlight; i just don’t get it. in this case, i think i would have focused on yogurt — or maybe “blueberry yogurt” — and relied on consistency of design in the rest of the product line to immediately convey the rest.



pe-cans, not pe-cahns

Those nuts at Publix have done it again. Pecans, walnuts and sliced almonds are now available in a Publix baking aisle near you. The slogans are particularly witty, but that pesky “which word to highlight” issue pops up again.

Pecans!On the pecans, the line reads “Pecan-can.” The white flood on the bag leaves three strategically shaped areas open, and a simple sketch completes the picture of three pecans dancing. Clever! Some of us can also feel vindicated by the confirmation of correct pronunciation—after all, if the nuts are going to dance, they’re not going to do the “cahn-can!”

Onto more important matters…the highlighted attribute of this title is “PecanHalves.” There’s no subtitle, and they use the two-color sans-serif variation on the title. The walnuts have a similar setup. “Walnuts” is the emphasized word, and the line reads “Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall-nut.” (Awesome.) There’s a matching sketch. But the sliced almonds take a different approach. The transparent area of the bag is in the shape of a cleaver, and the tagline is “Slice, slice baby” This is all amazing. But the emphasized word is “sliced.” What’s that about? Seems to me that “almonds” should have the emphasis to keep in line with the rest of the nuts.

But, the choice of emphasis words has long confused me. It’s sure not a decision I’d like to make, because sometimes one word is more fitting than another. But at least within the same product line—if not the entire line—make it consistent!

Lest I lose sight of my original impression, though, these nuts are amazing. The taglines are great!


This is definitely a personal favorite. I hold a special place in my heart for chocolate, and especially chocolate chips. These semi-sweet morsels contribute to one of the best recipes ever created: chocolate chip cookies.

Publix rolled out the new packaging on baking chips several months ago. With the new packaging came a few new varieties of chips, too, I believe, making the store line fully competitive with the name brand options.

chocolate chips

For the most part, the coloring on the Publix chips is consistent with general perception of what the product’s color is. For example, the butterscotch package uses a yellow-orange shade, the milk-chocolate package uses a rich and creamy brown color, etc. But the one pictured here— semi-sweet—uses a red color. As the comment a few posts back mentioned, this makes it look like strawberry chips or something! I suppose they chose the red color because brown is on the milk-chocolate chips, but what about using a second shade of brown? (Like the old light-brown / dark-brown M&M’s!)

Overall, though, this package is great. They used an illustration of the product, but no witty humor like on the snack products. I think this is indicative of when they designed the package, though—only the newer packages have the humor. Plus, this is in the baking products category, and most of the baking products use a similar strategy.

graham cracker fun

graham crackersThis is one of my favorites. It took a long time to switch over to the new design, but boy it looks better. It follows the same style common of most snack foods—a simple sans-serif-looking serif font for the big name, and a unique product shot with a witty saying below.

The house built from crackers is a great way of showing the product. It’s also a great setup for the tagline “Honey, I’m home.”

I’ve ranted before about using the descriptive word as the highlight, thus forcing shoppers to read the fine print to know what the product is. In this case, though, it works out well. “Honey Graham” probably is the best thing to highlight. Makes it easy to see at a glance that the box contains graham crackers. Odd, isn’t it? Not sure what the best method is overall. Consistency is typically key, but not in this case. Perhaps some rewriting is in order so that each product can be emphasized in the same manner.

mmmmm…vanilla wafers

i waited with great anticipation for this product. i happen to like vanilla wafers a lot, but when you buy the kind without the “v” it’s pretty expensive. something like twice the price. yet at the same time, purchasing the store brand in its pre-redesigned package days wasn’t all that appealing either. (the old box was yellow, it was pink, it was white…a regular rainbow of colors and stressful fonts.)

vanilla wafersthe new package, though, was worth the wait. it’s one of the first ones i saw to feature what i call the “teasing tagline” technique: they combined a product shot with a simple drawing and humorous phrase.

what a creative way to spark interest in a commonplace product! beyond that, it creates interest in the whole product line—each variety of cookies and crackers uses the same approach. (it invites the question, “what will the next one say?!“)

as with all other products in this area, they used a mostly sans-serif typeface and no space between words (two colors instead).

here’s a question to ponder: will they change out the drawings every so often? seems to me like that would be a great thing to do—customers would have a reason to check out the products whether or not they intend to make a purchase. and we all know Americans are suckers for impulse buys when they like the way a product is packaged…