Bumper year for metal in Starpack Student awards

Clever shaping and intricate graphics produced standout entries 

Tasked to create a metal speciality gift pack for a fictitious Champagne or sparkling wine, a showstopping entry which brilliantly combined elegance with innovation, landed Loughborough University design student, Matthew Noon, the £600 top prize from category sponsor, the Metal Packaging Manufacturers Association in this year’s Starpack Students competition organised by IoM3. 

Matthew created an unusually shaped pack under the brand name ‘The Crewman Wine Company’, and described as “based on a cylinder, but angled outwards at the centre to create a more bold and luxury appearance”. A dramatic matt purple finish with a perforated peacock logo gives instant shelf appeal, while a gold finish inside designed to reflect light through the perforations creates additional impact. 

Samuel Palmer from Nottingham Trent University was one of two runners-up with ‘Mirage’, a dramatic black and white pack with an encased cylinder beautifully designed for maximum impact.  

Alison Smith-Paul from Teesside University was the second runner-up with ‘Chevalier’, which incorporates a clever hinged opening in the shape of a knight to emphasis the brand name. 

Smauel Palmer and Alison Smith-Paul also received Gold Awards from IoM3 along with Toby Maurice and Zachary Davidson from Nottingham University, and Ewa Jablonska from Loughborough University. 

MPMA judges, Robert Fell and Debbie Clements from MPMA; Nicola Jones from Tata Steel; Corrina Korrubel, Eviosys; and Graham Smith, Twelve PR; examined thirty entries in what they considered a very good year with a very high standard of entries and a wealth of clever and well thought through ideas. 

Robert Fell commented: 

“Speciality packaging should stop people in their tracks, and Matthew’s ‘The Crewman Wine Company’ pack was the absolute standout entry in this respect, wowing the judges with its clever shaping, and a tactile, upmarket finish which was a key component of the brief.  

“Similarly, ‘Mirage’ by Samuel Parker incorporated dramatic and striking graphics and had a clever ‘second cylinder’ which gave added shelf appeal, while Alison’s ‘Chevalier’ design was quirky and unusual and really did turn heads. All in all, an impressive year.” 

Robert Fell presented the winners with their prizes at the IoM3 Starpack Students Award ceremony held in London last night (Thursday 22 June). 

MPMA is sponsoring the same category in 2024 with a brief to design a luxury gift pack for perfume, aftershave or cologne. Full details will be presented shortly on the IoM3 website. 

MPMA also offers universities and colleges a bespoke, personal lecture/session on designing and manufacturing in metal. Any institution wishing to take up this offer should contact debbie@mpma.org.uk   

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