2009 Editors’ Choice Award Winner: Secondary/Promotional
Music Box Holiday Gift Sets
by Jean Paul Gaultier
Last winter, Jean Paul Gaultier sought to awaken customers’ memories of childhood and of holidays past. For his holiday gift sets for fragrances Classique, Le Male, Fleur du Male, and Gaultier², the designer created a carton that plays music—the kind of sound that can only be produced by an old-fashioned music box.
“The sound of a music box came to Monsieur Gaultier’s mind as a way to conjure the spirit of the Christmas season, a festive and magical atmosphere, and childhood memories,” says Isabelle Fulconis, marketing manager for new business and special animations for Jean Paul Gaultier Parfums.
To create the carton, which is a setup box with a sliding tray, Gaultier and his team turned to supplier Cosfibel and its subsidiary Mandalay Design. There were two options for music-playing mechanisms—an electronic chip, or an old-fashioned mechanical music box. Because Gaultier wanted an authentic, old-fashioned music box sound, the teams quickly chose the mechanical device. Another benefit of the mechanical device? It didn’t require batteries to operate.
As a starting point, the teams purchased some music boxes to figure out how they could be integrated in the carton. Mandalay Design worked on the engineering. Meanwhile, Giorgio Martinoli, a designer at design agency ADM, started sketching the graphics for the outside of the carton, with clear instructions from Gaultier about colors and shapes.
With direction from Gaultier’s marketing and package development teams, Mandalay Design found a way to incorporate the music box. The music box is standard—the type of music box with a comb, a cylinder, and a spring motor found in jewelry boxes today.
The music box was screwed onto a cardboard card, which was then glued on the inner wall of the carton’s back panel. A hole was also drilled in the carton so that the music box’s windup key could protrude, allowing customers to wind the music box up once it stops playing music. The music boxes play such famous tunes as Love Me Tender by Elvis Presley and Scott Joplin’s The Entertainer.
A long pin, acting like a lever, sticks out from the music box at an angle. The carton’s slide-out tray presses against the long pin when the tray is slid into the carton. When customers slide the tray out, the tray stops pressing on the pin, and music automatically begins to play.
“During production, we tested each carton’s music box one by one,” says Fulconis.
The setup box was made from recycled board wrapped in uncoated paper. Graphics were silk-screened and enhanced with a second pass of glittery silk-screen ink. A grosgrain-ribbon loop was attached to the front of the sliding tray to give customers something to grasp when sliding the tray out. The products sit in the tray in a flocked vacuum-form liner. A secondary plastic sleeve supplied by Roskoplast slides over the box.
Fulconis says that Jean Paul Gaultier always makes a point of designing unusual holiday packaging. “Creativity is at the heart of the Jean Paul Gaultier brand, and customers wait every year to see what packages he will bring for the holidays.”