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Design for the circle economy

Design for the circle economy

The Circular Bottle

For laundry brand Seepje we designed a sustainable iconic bottle that helps to scale up in major retail channels.

We love Seepje

It was love at first sight between Seepje and us. Seepje has a wonderful story and we were determined to tell that story with a great packaging concept. Jasper and Melvin, the two entrepreneurs, saw in Nepal how women used the empty shells of the Apindus fruit to do their laundry. If they can do it in Nepal, we can do it in The Netherlands. They shipped a big bag full of the shells to Holland and Seepje began its journey. The tone of voice and the orginal packaging created by Helder Groen was the basis for the new bottle.

 

It was Generous Minds that brought us together. The organization that boosts good business recognized what kind of support was needed. It supplied marketing expertise to help Seepje define its brand values better and advised to discuss structural packaging with FLEX/design. Seepje selected us from various design agencies to develop their new bottle. First of all to solve various issues in the supply chain, but mostly because Seepje needed a bottle that would help to create a success in new retail channels.

We love Seepje

It was love at first sight between Seepje and us. Seepje has a wonderful story and we were determined to tell that story with a great packaging concept. Jasper and Melvin, the two entrepreneurs, saw in Nepal how women used the empty shells of the Apindus fruit to do their laundry. If they can do it in Nepal, we can do it in The Netherlands. They shipped a big bag full of the shells to Holland and Seepje began its journey. The tone of voice and the orginal packaging created by Helder Groen was the basis for the new bottle.

 

It was Generous Minds that brought us together. The organization that boosts good business recognized what kind of support was needed. It supplied marketing expertise to help Seepje define its brand values better and advised to discuss structural packaging with FLEX/design. Seepje selected us from various design agencies to develop their new bottle. First of all to solve various issues in the supply chain, but mostly because Seepje needed a bottle that would help to create a success in new retail channels.

Process

Of course a brand like Seepje does not have the same resources that big corporates in fmcg have. Therefore we used a very lean process that forced us to take a bit of risk and trust our intuition. That journey took us along all kinds of interesting ideas and we explored various scenarios with a high degree of sustainability. Off course design is important. The idea of the iconic shape of a bloc of soap offered the functionality that was needed but also gave the brand a visual imprint that could be very powerful. Design, engineering, sourcing, tooling,… everything in less than 4 months.

 

 

Circular Economy

Waste=Food! The words that came from Bill Mc Donough and Michael Braungart in their book Cradle 2 Cradle were taken to heart by Seepje. They used waste in the form of the Apindus shells as the main ingredient for their detergents. We took it to heart by finding a waste source as the main ingredient for our bottles. We found this source when we saw a supplier recycling post-consumer waste from HDPE milk bottles. We designed around the limitations of the material to make sure that the bottles could be made with the proper quality and close the circle.

 

 

Scale Up

As of the beginning of March 2017 Seepje can now be found in many retail channels in The Netherlands including Albert Heijn. Distribution to Belgian and German retailers is in the pipeline. The growth in retail outlets selling Seepje brings growth in sales but also brand recognition. We believe that the future is for social enterprises that share their value creation with the rest of society. Seepje does this as it pays a fair price to the workers in Nepal and by closing the circle in their supply chain. We wish Seepje the very best.

Managing & Creative Director

If you’d like to feel better about your laundry you can get your bottle of Seepje here