Great Penfold Branding – the wine doesn't matter!!

Penfolds unveils the world’s most expensive wine

The world’s most expensive wine is now on sale for a staggering £109,000

Yahoo LifestyleYahoo Lifestyle – 4 hours ago

Great Penfold Branding

‘2004 Block 42’the world’s most expensive wine © SWNSAt first glance it may not seem like a wine bottle but this glass and metal cone contains the world’s most expensive wine.The special edition ‘2004 Block 42’ cabernet sauvignon is the only wine encased in bottle with no cork or screw cap, according to Australian winery Penfolds.

It is produced from a single vineyard, from what the winery claims are the oldest continuously producing Cabernet Sauvignon vines in the world.

[Related article: Summer food and wine combinations that shine]
The red wine, which is limited to just 12 bottles, comes in an Ampoule which is hand-blown by Nick Mount, a famous glass artist from Adelaide, Australia.

Any buyer is likely to have a hangover before their first glass, with the 750ml bottle costing a tab-busting £109,000.

This means each 150ml glass costs around £21,000 – enough for 5,250 glasses of wine in a pub.

When each bottle is sold, Penfolds’ chief winemaker Peter Gago will fly out to the destination and open it in a special ceremony.

“Behind every Penfolds wine is the joy, energy, research and science that shapes it.

“The Ampoule Project is typical of the pioneering philosophy behind Penfolds’ winemaking evolution.

“The collaboration with South Australia’s finest artists has been a fitting tribute for one of South Australia’s finest wines,” Gago said.

Solutionist Designer: is the High St Retail designer dead? stifled and esconced

Nick Garrett – Posted article 23 06 12


Are you a furniture designer?

Really…?? What kind??  (tell me about it in comments)

Below are images of  retail sofa designs that really fail to provide something pure fresh and new.

Above:  The Moulton originally designed for Marks and Spencer… lifted by NEXT Plc.  Or was it the other way around??

Either way Rob Scarlet’s design is detailed and far superior.

The designs in this gallery range from Scarlet design, Laura Ashley, Next and M&S.

Where is the design innovation in this classic theme?


This is moving on … not product design.

Approaches to design

A design approach is a general philosophy that may or may not include a guide for specific methods. Some are to guide the overall goal of the design. Other approaches are to guide the tendencies of the designer. A combination of approaches may be used if they don’t conflict.

Some popular approaches include:

  • KISS principle, (Keep it Simple Stupid), which strives to eliminate unnecessary complications.
  • There is more than one way to do it (TIMTOWTDI), a philosophy to allow multiple methods of doing the same thing.
  • Use-centered design, which focuses on the goals and tasks associated with the use of the artifact, rather than focusing on the end user.
  • User-centered design, which focuses on the needs, wants, and limitations of the end user of the designed artifact.
  • Critical design uses designed artifacts as an embodied critique or commentary on existing values, morals, and practices in a culture.
But even in this list there is something missing… future brand design and solutionism.
Retail product stagnation

Often a designer (especially in commercial retail situations) is not in a position to define purpose as the main objective of the task due to constraints. Whether a designer is, is not, or should be concerned with purpose or intended use beyond what they are expressly hired to influence, is debatable, depending on the situation.  In the commercial environment the product development emphasis drives designers away from user centric design toward shelf fill newer versioning – or ‘moving on‘.

In our N European (UK) raw consumer society,  disinterest in the wider role of design might also be attributed to the commissioning agent, department head, design manager or client: rather than the designer.

However the stark exceptions to low end design is plentiful including Apple, Diesel, Dyson, Ted Baker, UGG, All Saints, Monsoon  and  Phillipe Starck to name a few.

Some of these newer fields of design are entirely based around user interface and identity.  Most have built-in specified purposes and smart user values, such as user-centered designslow design, and sustainable design.

If we dumb down design then Asian competitors will take the easy road: lift and reprint as they have done for 2 decades – putting the bulk of our talented product design industry out of business… moreover the consumer loses out.

Is that the objective of modern retail today?

The drive to simplify the tech interface in order to maximise experience requires real design strategy and planning.  These aspirations succeed in building prolific product ID, brand performers and consumer loyalty.

Design DIS

The modern High Street retail major simply isn’t interested in this philosophy because it build reliance and design based centrifuge.

The retail blue chip requires not reliance on staff talent, but product and HR roll-through… a faithless turnover with it’s designer teams part of it, kept entirely out of public view and moved on.

HR fuel this rotational ethic.

This approach is not only self destructive but it ultimately threatens the retailer’s very own customer base – it is a design (and design industry) disservice.

It stands to contain, negate and devalue the designer’s in-house role, creative success and wider importance in our performance based society.  Design is important to everyone.

So why not exemplify it?

Why not stage it?

Why not show it?

As a designer reading this article you must first define how you continue in retail design.  And carefully re-design your future prior to ME threat and burn-out. Mentors are not a bad idea.


The retail employer harvests the worst long term prospect for it’s young design staff because it would rather see a designer fade in mid thirties than break away as freelancer, demanding higher fee remuneration, rights and market threat.

It is the duty of experienced designers to share support and pure design agenda with the industry young  in order to keep UK design ahead of the worsening, not so cheap, manufacture based stuff.