Article | 02/22/2016 12:14:00

Glarus: Craft beers with class labels

A successful label design is always a collaborative process between people. That’s why the owners of the Glarus brand Deyan Ivanov and Ivelin Dorovski teamed up with designer Jordan Jelev, label printer Rotoprint OOD and UPM Raflatac – labelling a craft beer brand that really took flight.

Glarus’ seagull takes flight on PP Silver TC 50​

Jordan Jelev – the Labelmaker - art director, graphic designer and calligrapher – was a name already known to Deyan Ivanov: “His name is famous among wine producers. It pays to work with the best. The beer obviously needs to taste exceptionally good, but the label design and printing need to give the impression of a luxury product.”

Jelev himself says design is always a collaborative process – the name and trademark, for example, were devised by the owners of the Glarus brand.

“From there, the visualisation of the new label design was mine. I drew the seagulls and logos, and created the typography. There was a natural chemistry among us, which developed into a friendly relationship that created a good environment for the design work.

“The goal of the designer is to create an appearance that is easy to remember, that can be explained, and that is closely related to the subject on which he works. ‘Glarus’ brings to mind thoughts of the sea, so it was logical to include the image of a nice Varna seagull. I wanted to create a label that could be instantly recognised and remembered, where the customer says, ‘I’m looking for the bottle with the seagull.’”


Resistant for demanding conditions

To bring a label design to life, Jelev’s creative role takes into account materials, printing technology and the capabilities of the printing house. “All the conditions under which the bottles might be used and stored should be taken into consideration when designing the label – for example, you don’t want labels peeling off during transportation.

“To avoid risks, for the Glarus labels I chose to work with UPM Raflatac’s PP Silver TC 50 metalized film. This label product is waterproof, with good resistance to both low and high temperatures, and it’s scratch resistant and attractive. It has a great adhesive in RP 37 too. Plus this silver metalized film eliminated the need to hot stamp.”

He adds that the metalized effect is preserved when printing. To leverage the beauty of the media even more, he used white overlays. In the upper part of the label he played with silver lines to create the feeling of perspective, horizon and flight – “an area in which our seagull would feel comfortable”.


Metallized radiance without hot-stamping

Knowing the capabilities of their label converter Rotoprint OOD, Jordan worked out the details for producing the labels with Deyan Ivanov – everything was specified so there wouldn’t be any problems printing them while taking into account the conditions of product distribution and storage.

“We’ve had cases in the past where hot stamping was erased while the product was stored in boxes, and cases where the labels would fall off while the product was cooled. Working together, we were able to avoid these problems by taking them into consideration at the conceptual stage,” says Violeta Nikiforova, a director at Rotoprint OOD.

“The PP Silver TC 50 film is very good to work with, and it’s ideal for certain designs because of its brightness and the specific product storage conditions the label needs to withstand. Jordan was delighted with the material because there’s no need for hot stamping.” She says the print process is very straightforward, using three or four colour flexo. The interesting highlighting and engraving effect in the Glarus label is achieved by using matt and gloss finishes, and the partial white overlay varies the appearance of the colour.

Winning strategy: sales now nearing capacity

The Glarus label is so far the only self-adhesive label for a Bulgarian beer, with the face material and adhesive selected to create a great looking product at the point of sale. Deyan Ivanov says that as a testament to product quality, sales of their craft beer have increased to near full production capacity. 

“We’ll continue to differentiate our beers by the flavour of the product and the colour of the label, yet maintain a consistent brand image so that when customers look at the bottle, they know exactly what’s in it and can quickly pick us out on the shelf. We’ll continue using these winning strategies.”