2021 

PROJECT FRAME
Brand Strategy, Packaging Design, and Retail Design for Faber-Castell (Stationary). Solving brand cohesiveness, improving brand presence, and sustainability for artists. 

CREDITS
Gerardo Herrera (Packaging Instructor)
Dan Gottlieb & Penny Herscovitch (Lighting Instructor)

[This is a student project. Not affiliated with Faber-Castell®]
After
Before
To celebrate Faber-Castell's 260th anniversary, Time Traveler presents a collection of the brand's most successful products through out history.

Supporting the mission ‘to inspire and to be a creativity & life companion’
To be a lifelong companion

Whether an artist works on a compact table, a large studio floor, or travels outdoor, the design focuses on being adaptable to your ideal workspaces. It's durable, portable, and opens both freestanding / lying down.
The design re-introduces the brand's historic type layout while using modern clean white base that's easy on the eyes. Allowing the packaging artworks (that double as their own products' swatch) to shine.

Adapted consistently to each product's forms and functions, it showcases Faber-Castell's elegance and timelessness while keeping the brand approachable and recognisable.
To inspire creativity

The project is completed with an interactive retail design using rolls of papers, embossed with the packagings' illustrations, as a swatch wall. It invites people to create an unexpected collaborative piece while testing the products.

The museum of Faber-Castell can have an enlarged, art installation version of the same design.
Insights
Brand Insights

Advantages of established legacy as innovator:
  • Faber-Castell sold the first ever 'branded' pencil
  • Known for it's precision, hand craftsmanship, and long standing history

Brand architecture is difficult to navigate:
  • The 3 brand lines are aimed for different demographics, but has many same products & prices. And generally unclear for consumers
Competitive landscape opportunities:
  • Most popular stationary brands have similar brand positioning, differentiated only in affordability
  • Its' biggest competition, Staedtler is more conservative towards change & explorations

ART & GRAPHIC

Drawing, colouring, & office stationary

CREATIVE STUDIO

Painting & colouring stationary

PLAY & LEARNING

Children' arts & crafts stationary

User Insights
 
Different creatives, different spaces:
  • Students usually work on a crowded desk. While working artists tend to work on their studio floor
  • There are also more mobile artists who work on folding chair or even actively moving (expedition artists & researchers)
Bringing back traditional arts:
  • "Sadly, when we do observations, we don't see students sketch anymore, they just take photos"
  • People have been switching to Procreate and digital art as it's more convenient
  • Though many believe there are irreplaceable magic in traditional artforms
Packaging & Retail Insights
 
Easier to spot other brands:
  • Current packaging is very dark & busy
  • Illustrations become the first read,
       instead of product name / type
  • Inconsistent in graphic layout, illustration style, languages, materials, and structure
  • Different plastics are used when the board based
       are durable enough to last the users years
Is it a premium product or not?:
  • Faber-Castell doesn't have its own end cap display, scattered around the stores or locked behind a glass
  • "I didn't know they have many sub-brands. I'm still using the same red ones since I was 10"
  • "There's the green ones, but I thought they're just more expensive because I'd see them behind a glass"
Brand Strategy
STEP 1

Introduce new VBL & brand experience through Time Traveler line.

STEP 2

Push for more solid brand presence through Time Traveler, retail & interaction

STEP 3

All brand-lines clean up of products offering / choices & repackage adapting to Time Traveler design as base

TIME TRAVELER

The complete variety of core products

Pencils & pens / drawing stationary

Paints & pigmented / 

colouring stationary

Children' stationary

Core products selection

Brand Key Attributes

Supportive

Sustainable

Esteemed

Courageous

Excellent

Inspiring

To be connected and 

intimate with the user as the creative companion

Taking responsibility to help the Earth, as the biggest pencil manufacturer

Faber-Castell is a premium brand that represents long

tradition, heritage, & class 

Explores the future and innovates to withstand time & be competitive

Every execution is based on German excellent precision and quality

Every product has the purpose to be a tool that inspire creativity

Target Consumer Persona

artists' quality, life long companion

Nadia, 23
Sells custom painting
on thrifted clothes

Workspace:

Dinner table, floor, garage

Pain Points:
  • Quality materials are expensive
  • Long lasting to save cost and maintain work consistency
  • Things spill when she moves between spaces
Michael, 69
Architect

Workspace:

Studio desk, wall, outdoor

Pain Points:
  • Quality output & more counts for detailed work 
  • Portability to be taken to building sites
  • Sustainability & beautiful craftsmanship packaging
Brand Concept

Inspired by blank canvas & paper, marbles, and white walls.

A clean slate that supports the artist in creating their vision. A space where the art itself can shine.










Taking in the experience of walking through a museum, getting lost in an art piece, and the creation process of art itself.

Intimate, entrancing & 
otherworldly, a meeting of the elegant classic and sophisticated modern.

move the images!

Typography

B&W clean sans-serif typeface is laid in Faber-Castell's vintage layout with subtle thin line works

Colours

White and neutral tones. Accented with Faber-Castell's original gold & green

Materials & Finishes

Premium feel, durable materials that are not plastic

Sourcing

The chipboard is made with collected pencil production waste. Faber-Castell has its own forest for pencils' woods, therefore it can utilise existing resources instead of new ones.

Textures / Illustrations

Beautiful, yet functional, pack illustrations are made with the products themselves. Showing the different pen thicknesses and how colours can layer & blend together in application, like a swatch test

Packaging Design
Retail Design
Process Highlights