‘The Stage’ Tetralogy: A Toast to Wuxia

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Manufacturer: Fudy Solutions
Location: Taiwan
Project Type: Concept
Packaging Contents: Wine
Packaging Substrate / Materials: Cardboard, paper
Printing Process: Foil stamping, spot varnish

Fudy Solutions prides itself on being a product packaging consultant and always hopes to bring customers stronger, more beautiful packaging and integrate storytelling into products’ design and packaging. So, Fudy even started the R&D of ‘the Stage’ series and built a stage to display the products. Thanks to ‘the Stage’ series, packaging that was usually regarded as a supporting player in the product’s story is finally able to appear on the scene and become the protagonist.

Wuxia novels, namely martial arts novels, depict the dauntless and heroic spirit shared in many Eastern cultures. For many years, Wuxia has defined a generation’s understanding of chivalry and justice and even affected their way of life. Fudy used Wuxia novels as the inspiration for ‘the Stage’ creation and designed a series of wine bottle packaging. ‘The Stage’ tetralogy illustrates that modern heroes do not need swords, as they only need wine to make their way in the world.

The Sword
The opening scene of a Wuxia story always starts with a peerless sword. Heroes’ gazes are drawn irresistibly to the sword and the heroes must inevitably compete against each other for it.

Imagine the boxed wine is the one and only Excalibur. The shining wine is like the sword that reflects the golden light, and the wine box is like the scabbard. Thus, the box body uses fine art paper with hot foil stamping and spot varnish to make it more radiant, highlighting the scabbard-like metal carved texture. Bronze and gold fine art paper is specially selected and used for the handle of the box, furthermore the structural design widens the depth of the box handle to give it a firm feel which makes it easier to unbox.

This exquisite wine box packaging focuses on the dynamic experience of unpacking. Unboxing the wine bottle as if drawing out a sword. With the side draw-out design, this packaging brings consumers an incredible experience of unboxing. The appearance of the packaging and the way of opening the box transforms the unboxing experience into an outstanding performance of swordplay in Wuxia novels.

The Heroes’ Invitation
Wine—the most important part of banquets from ancient times to the present. Making the packaging carry the meaning of generous sharing is the core concept Fudy Solutions wanted to present when thinking about the structural design of ‘the Heroes’ Invitation.’ The folio design allows unboxers to see the wine standing upright while unboxing, like a hero waiting for the arrival of another hero, hand-in-hand creating another legend of Wuxia.

The inner box of ‘the Heroes’ Invitation’ uses metal two-sided coated paper from ‘High Faith Paper,’ and the mirror reflection effect reflects the wine’s luxuriousness. The outer box is made of dark green chipboard covered with gold sand casting PE film, which makes ‘the Heroes’ Invitation’ shimmer, and the texture of the box is a special and extraordinary matte feel. The color of dark green conjures up calmness, stability, and contentedness, showing the self-confident and unassuming temperament of the host who sent out ‘the Heroes’ Invitation.’

The Enterclose
Heroes receive the invitations, gather, and drink in the enterclose. The packaging, ‘the Enterclose’, is a wine box with double openings. The structure is inspired by the transparent and bright architectural enterclose design. In a traditional Chinese building, an enterclose is an open space between the front and rear courtyards, a passage between two rooms with doors to pass through. The ancients would banquet in the enterclose because the architectural openness reminded them to behave with openness and sincerity.

A wine’s color tells us a lot about the wine; therefore, a wine’s color is one of the characteristics that wine drinkers appreciate. How can we set off the wine’s color using just packaging? For this, Fudy has developed a front and rear structure design of ‘the Enterclose,’ allowing wine collectors to enjoy the color and luster of their wine with the bottle kept in the box.

Fudy chose starry dark blue fine art paper for the wine box and used special varnishing techniques to make ‘the Enterclose’ shimmer in the dark. ‘The Enterclose’ uses hot foil stamping to represent the beauty of the beams and pillars. This illustrates the refined and unassuming style of the product, while being difficult to ignore.

Imagine that a group of heroes are gathered under the starry night, who put aside their prejudices, drink, and talk freely regardless of a friend or foe. The banquet at the enterclose becomes an opportunity for a great collaboration.

The Auspicious Omen
In the final piece of the ‘Stage’ series — ‘the Auspicious Omen,’ Fudy puts away all their dazzling moves and uses only simple techniques to show its persistence and strength during the years in the packaging industry. ‘The Auspicious Omen’ (in Chinese’ 紫氣東來,’ can be directly translated as meaning the purple air from the East) is a metaphor for the emergence of auspiciousness, and it also symbolizes the arrival of nobles and the fullness of glory. Fudy chose the noble and sacred purple as the base color, boldly embellishing it with yellow. Simple but eye-catching. The combination of purple and yellow, generally regarded as the colors of the royal family in the East, reveals the exalted atmosphere and brings a captivating and impactful visual experience.

The self-imposed challenge of ‘the Auspicious Omen’ is simple. However, being simple is never as simple as it seems. Once we remove all the complicated post-printing processing, using only color printing, we can see Fudy Solutions’ color management strength has been honed through experience over the years. The structure of ‘the Auspicious Omen’ adopts a standard opening and closing design, allowing users to easily unbox the wine by only following their intuition.

The inner box is made of art-paper coated chipboard with full spot-color printing, and the outer packaging is made of two-sided art paper with the same printing technique, embellished with yellow printing. Even though the design is simple, with the distinguished purple appearance and a bright yellow interior, ‘the Auspicious Omen’ is able to catch consumers’ eyes at a glance. Moreover, the streamlined production process makes the price of this packaging more accessible.

Tetralogy: A Toast to Wuxia
After ‘the Sword,’ ‘the Enterclose,’ and ‘the Heroes’ Invitation,’ the closing piece of the ‘Stage’ series — ‘the Auspicious Omen,’ is like the final climax of the feast. During the clashes of toasts, deals are closed, and the opportunity for mutual benefit opens up.