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Ruinart

Piet Hein Eek’s rough and ready aesthetic has been united with Ruinart, the world’s oldest champagne house for which the designer created new wooden packaging. 

By Editor Design.nl / 09-05-2013

The world’s oldest champagne house, Ruinart (1729), was the first to use the stone quarries deep under the ground in Reims to age its wines, the first to re-establish the old bulbous bottle shape, and the first at the end of the eighteenth century to package bottles in wooden boxes. 

Against this historical background and in keeping with Ruinart’s tradition of working with artists, Piet Hein Eek was commissioned to design new wooden boxes. The design did not end with that one wooden box, but developed into a complete campaign peppered with history.

The shape of the box was based on the shape of the bottle. In order to save room, the packaging was designed to tightly fit around the bottle. This resulted in a pyramid shape that is easily stackable. 

As the boxes were similar to the shape of a stone used to build arches above doors, or bridges. Arches began forming from the boxes – which formed the building blocks – and soon an entire campaign was born. 

Ruinart proceeded to order copious amounts of boxes in different shapes and sizes, resulting in various arches, including a life-size one much like the ‘Arc de Triomphe’ as envisioned by Eek. Used for a publicity campaign in Paris, France, the boxes (and accompanying champagne) are now on sale via Ruinart, alongside designs by Maarten Baas and Patricia Urquiola among others. 

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