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Since 2009, the number of US wineries has grown by 50%. According to 2019 numbers, there are over 10,000 wineries in the US currently. In 2018, US breweries, including craft and microbrews, grew to 7,450. Here in Washington, we’re also aware of a number of cideries (we have great apples, after all), too. And that doesn’t count the craft distilleries and meaderies.

While this is great news for those of us who like to quaff these beverages, it can be tough for the distillers, vintners, and brewers. How can you distinguish your beverage product from all the others in this increasingly crowded market? One way is with a distinctive and memorial label. Younger customers tend to prefer labeling and packaging that is more artistic or humorous, as well,

We’ve noticed a couple of recent label design trends for wine and other alcoholic beverages. Here’s some cool examples, from a variety of small to medium craft establishments.

A Touch of Foil

Many of the labels shown here use foil as an attention-getter. You don’t necessarily want to go crazy with foil, but a touch here or there can really add some dimension to a label.

Four Fires Meadery, Shogun Barista – I love these label designs so much I had to include two. This one has more than a touch of foil! The label material is silver polyester with a matte laminate, so it’s very thin, but very tough. This design allows the silver to shine through in the eyes, and the foil accents bring the background and the flame alive.

Virtue Cellars, Charisma Cabernet Sauvignon – A much quieter design, gray and wine ink on white felt paper, with gold foil touches front and back on the halo, the grapes, the leaves. Simple but eye-catching; the label has a nice heavy feel.

High Desert Pure Lotion – Not a beverage label, but with a design that is certainly applicable to bottles. This is printed on “Estate 8” (uncoated vellum) paper with a special strong adhesive for clinging to plastic rather than glass. This label has small flashes of gold foil for quiet elegance and sophistication.

Micro-Textures

Next label design trend: Using materials with a bit of unusual texture. The texture on your labels catches the eye and makes people want to reach out and touch them – that all important appeal to the senses.

Pointellist uses diamond allure – a custom material – for their beer. This label is shaped specifically for a larger bottle. This material is  water resistant and has a very cool texture. This is also a nice vintage design.

Noisy Water Winery put their muscat label on white latitude paper. Very subtle veining, nice feel on the fingers. This is a more traditional or vintage design with foil.

Abelha, Prata Organic Cachaca – another label done on white latitude, using the white as a background color rather than covering it. A splash of silver foil on the front adds a little panache – and I love the lone bee on the back. You can see the texture best right by the foiled area.

Specialty or Custom Die Cuts

Another label design trend we’re happy to see is the use of specialty cuts. Sure, you could use a regular rectangular label, but there’s so many other options! We don’t charge extra for die cuts, so don’t be afraid to let your imagination go.

Four Fires Meadery, Slow Jamz – I’m using another of their labels designs to highlight the specialty die cut of the flame at the top, adding extra dimension to the label. (I also love the way the mic and the product name have “flares” that show the silver material underneath.) 

Orange Tiger, Orange Liqueur – an attractive label on eggshell material, so it has a heavy weight and a nice feel to it. The label has some smooth curves that help it look good on the bottle and stand out on the shelves. (The top ones almost look like ears.) And the orange slices in copper foil are an excellent humorous touch.

Soule Winery, Golden Apple Wine – this curvy, sensual label is also made on eggshell and looks beautiful wrapped around a bottle. The touch of gold foil adds even more elegance. Note: Labels like these may be best applied by hand; they may be too delicate for use with labeling machinery.

Traditional/Vintage

We’ve seen quite a bit of this label design trend in 2019. (It never really went away.) The traditional or vintage look is great for small-batch, hand crafted spirits and wines. You can write on many of our label stocks, so you can add in the fine details on each labeled bottle of your small batch.

Bauman’s Century Farm Cider, Small Batch Limited has a photo of Great Grandpa Stephen in sepia on our white felt paper. Note that this label has checkboxes for bottle sizes, as well, so it can be used on a variety of bottles.

Hardesty, Willow Creek Chardonnay has a traditional, minimalist design in black and red ink on our “Estate 9” material, a medium-weight vellum. The use of white space and only two colors gives this label a peaceful vibe. Sit under a tree and sip. Most labels have the front and the back the same size, but they don’t need to be, as you can see here.

Topo Reserve, Carolina Straight Wheat Whiskey – This label is printed on eggshell material with copper foil. Love the regional map  that serves as the background. The foil really pops and adds depth to the label. Another writable label so small batch info can be hand entered. Note that the “TOPO” font includes wheat, a nice touch.

Story Telling

Another 2019 label design trend is using your label to tell a story. With front and back labels, you have space to talk about the wine or beverage, or about yourselves, while still having room for the required notices.

Wandering Wines, Lost Find (on white felt paper) – from the photo to the travel stamps to the label text, heck even the name Wandering Wines, this label tells its own story. You can even follow their journey online.

LeDoux, Double Cask Blended Bourbon Whiskey – This is a cowboy beverage, without a doubt. The image, the texture, the shape, the signature all blend to tell the story. Just LeDoux it.

Viandel Vineyards, Norton Platinum – Love that cat in the silver foil accented smoking jacket on the front label. Love his story on the back, signed with a paw print, even more.

Want to feel the materials? Request a free sample by going to our Wine Label page and clicking the blue sample request button. If there’s a label or design style above that particularly appeals, be sure to mention that in the comments section of your sample request.

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