The challenge for London consultancy Browns was to help Swedish paper manufacturer Trebruk sell a new type of paper. Under the brands Munken and Arctic, Trebruk had created a ‘bulk’ or ‘volumetric’ paper. This is thicker than normal papers, but less dense, so the pages have the same weight per square metre as normal papers. This feature gives users a significant financial advantage if a product needs to be sent by post.
Browns advised Trebruk not to try a hard-sell approach, but instead to hold a series of dinners, the first of which was held at London’s Groucho club on the 20 August. The 15-strong audience was made up of specially invited London designers, who were chosen partly because they knew each other. The aim was to make the evening more relaxed while the new product was explained to them.
At the beginning of July, Browns was given the brief without a pitch to design invitations and flyers and it came up with the concept of a series of black postcards with single words in white, all in lower case.
‘We get things all the time from printers and they go straight in the bin,’ says project manager Philip Ward. ‘The challenge was to make something that would have a chance of surviving in an office.’
The two postcard invitations had the words ‘stocky’ and ‘buxom’ on them. Books of eight postcards were also given out with the word ‘bulk’ printed on one side and a description of the paper and its various thicknesses and densities on the other side. On the other postcards were similar words based on the same theme, such as ‘voluptuous’ or ‘beefy’. The paper used was the 300 gsm Munken Print Extra, 1.5 times the thickness of ordinary paper.
Ward explains: ‘We tried to keep it as simple as possible because what they were talking about was quite complicated. We used a double hit black, underpinned with cyan to create a solid black as we like colours to be strong, and came up with the words at a brain storming session. We wanted words like “generous” to relate to the paper, but also something you might use to thank someone for taking you out to dinner for instance, just fun things really.’