Complex Curvature in Packaging

I’ve seen software that can do bend in solid geometry like ArtiosCAD and SolidWorks…functionality like sheet metal bends and stuff like that…but I haven’t seen any 3D CAD package that can complex curvature like you would see in many packaging design…the most familiar would be a McDonald’s Fries Container the part that actually folds up at the bottom to create sort of an arch (at the bottom of the container).

Has anyone seen a 3D package than can model up this sort of thing?

Let me know if I need to clarify what I mean here.

I know nothing, but I’d guess there is softgoods pattern-making software suited for this.

As a fallback, you could always create folded designs by hand and then scan and trace the flattened pattern in CAD for production.

Yeah this is what structural designers are doing now…Old-school is still the most current technology for this…make it by hand and then draw a 2D version in a light CAD program…I guess being from the Newschool I just want to be able to build this simple geometry in a 3D CAD program and then flatten and unflatten the patterns.

Well I guess I might just have to write my own program…I’ll see you guys again in 10 years.


I used to work at a packaging company, working primarily in corrugated. In order to make designs like the one you’re referring to, I would draw it out in 2D using score! (it’s pretty much the same thing as graphite). After the design was drawn out, I would send it to a sample table which then cuts and scores the design. If it came together perfectly… excellent! if not, I’d make adjustments and try again. My guess is that you don’t have access to a sample table. I know that the newer version of “score!” had a feature that would fold the 2d drawing together. I think this is what you’re looking for.

good luck