Unlike their main competitor, Pepsi, Coca-Cola have kept the same classic logo ever since their inception in 1885! They have however changed a few things along the way. Particularly the design of their bottles and cans. The bottle design that most of us recognise was praised by none other than Andy Warhol, as “a design icon”. We take a look at the morphology of the fizzy stuff over the years.
When Coca-Cola started out, it was sold it in a standard glass bottle called a ‘Hutchinson’, which would have been corked or plugged with porcelain until the invention of the bottle cap nearly a decade later.
By 1915 the Cola-Cola directors had become concerned that the brand was vulnerable to copy-cat competitors, and set out to make…
“A bottle which a person could recognize even if they felt it in the dark, and so shaped that, even if broken, a person could tell at a glance what it was”.
Earl R. Dean of the Root Glass Company, was the man for the job. His innovative Contour design was inspired by the curves and grooves of a cocoa bean.
The mid-section of the prototype was wider than it’s base, making it unstable, particularly on conveyor belts. As such it never made it to full scale production.
[Via Creative Quarterly]
Several iterations of the Contour would make their appearances, but the basic shape remained the same.
One of the early can designs.
This can inherits the Contour’s curves.
1993 – The ‘Polyethylene Terephthalate’
Hardly a thing of beauty, but the plastic bottle was a hit. It didn’t break; was re-sealable, lightweight and recyclable to boot.
“While the aluminium hid the fizz, the bottle became a canvas for limited edition artwork,” says Daniel Canetti, Planner at Top 100 London branding agency, and self proclaimed ‘Coca-Cola Head’.
2008 - Christmas Special
Babule shaped bombs of fizz. Coke’s commercial love affair with Christmas has inspired some innovative designs over the years.
And here’s some bonus material for all of you bottle geeks out there: a video of some of the very early items.