Mackie’s | A heritage of snack branding


Mackie’s | A heritage of snack branding

At time of writing Mackie’s crisps are being rebranded as Taylors following a recent buyout, this news got some in the studio reminiscing about the work we have done with Mackie’s over the years, work that we would like to share with you here…

Our trip down memory lane starts in February 2011 with our current Creative Director – Dan Heaford, then a mere Junior Designer working at 10D Creative Ltd in his first role since graduating Hull School of Art and Design (HSAD) earlier that year.

Taylors Welsh crisps branding

Under the careful watch of the studio manager Dan was tasked with creating concepts for a Welsh variant of Mackie’s crisps to be named Taylors Welsh crisps. This new brand was required to have synergy with the look and the feel of Mackie’s, to evoke heritage and most of all be unmistakably Welsh 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿.

Mackie’s crisps brand refresh

Impressed by our work on Taylors Welsh crisps, Mackie’s soon got back in touch and ask if Dan could have a look at refreshing the Mackie’s crisp hero range. They were looking to add new flavours and improve upon existing recipes so saw this the perfect opportunity to refresh their existing packaging.

Dan has a particularly fond memory of working on this project, “I vividly remember walking down the snack aisle at the (big) Tesco in town and seeing the range of Mackie’s crisps that I had designed there on the shelf, this was the first time that I’d seen something I’d created for sale in a retail environment, you always remember your first… it was a very proud moment”.

Next up, Ridge Cut

The next range in development for Mackie’s was to be their deep Ridge Cut, which similarly to Taylors Welsh crisps needed branding and packaging designing from scratch. This time with a full range of flavours Dan wanted to be more colourful, dedicating time to getting the perfect palette to make each pack stand out on shelf, Dan recalls, “From a distance I wanted consumers to be able to know it was Ridge cut by the shaped aperture and be able to tell the flavour from it’s unique identifying colour”.

A couple of years later, a phone rang unanswered at 10D Creative Ltd

…and was answered in by Sharp Iris Ltd, 10D Creative had been bought out, relocated to Grimsby, rebranded as Sharp Iris and joined up with printers Ultimate Packaging and digital printers Shere Print. This would form what would eventually become Ultimate Group (UG).

Now back to the phone call, Mackie’s were investing into Popcorn in a big way and wanted to offer Sharp Iris the opportunity to pitch branding and packaging concepts to the board at their Aberdeen site.

Dan, now a middle-weight designer jumped at the chance and along with a fellow designer hopped on the train to Aberdeenshire for a loooooong day comprising of 🚂pitch🚂😴. After a successful pitch we landed the popcorn project and handled all things Mackie’s before eventually handing branding assets over to their in-house team for them to shepherd.

To conclude

The design work that was done for Mackie’s over the years showcases the skill and creativity of the designers involved, designers that are key to everything we do at proper! The branding work done for Mackie’s has always aimed to evoke heritage and identity, with the Welsh crisps being unmistakably Welsh and the Ridge Cut crisps having a unique identifying colour for each flavour. The success of these branding projects led to further work with Mackie’s, including the development of their popcorn range. Overall, the story of Mackie’s branding is a testament to the importance of creating a strong brand identity that resonates with consumers and reflects the values of the company.