Flatware Packaging Questions

For my current model making class we were assigned to design flatware. We now have to design proper packaging of the flatware with use of thermaform. The thermaform will be used to hold the flatware in place, but we also have to design a box. My question is what would be the best material to make the box out (Chipboard??) of and what type of plastic do they use for packaging when displaying a “window” (acetone?)



If you are looking for optically clear thermoform material then PET (polyethylene terephthatate), PVC (Polyvinyl chloride) or PS (Polystyrene) could be options. If you are environmentally conscious, you could look at PLA (nanoengineered polylactic acid). Also a clear material that is thermoformable, but is made from 100% renewable resources (corn) and is bio-compostable. It has similar characteristics to PET.

The following link may help provide the information you need:http://www.formtightinc.com/

Also, if you do go the environmental sustainability route this link may stimulate some thoughts:http://www.globalpackagegallery.com/main.php/key/sustainable+packaging

Great post thank you. Sustainable would be a good way to go…so I will look more into that

As far as the thermaform is concerned the school already has that. What I am looking for is the type of “cardboard” used to make a box similar to

. (Small software boxes with Flap) as well as what type of plastics are used for small display windows such as

any further information would be great…

thanks again

My suggestion…

You’re a student, right?

Mix it up. Have the craziest and coolest thing in your class. Everyone is going to follow this standard route. Take action, beg for forgiveness later.

I once made a process cake instead of a process book. The design project itself was good, and the process book was worth at least 30% of the grade. Each slice of the cake had a candle on it, on each candle there was a little printout with process images and text. I received an A, and the class had a party.

Off the top of my head,
You could design a piece of PLA plastic or wood in the shape of an apple, with multiple angular slots in it, then the flatware can slide into the apple. So you get a display holder with the flatware to go on display, rather than hidden away in a drawer. I’m assuming your flatware is beautiful. Plus, then the packaging doesn’t get ditched immediately. Two points for cool, rest of the class 0.

The windows in cartons are typically mad from PET. This provides the best clarity and is pretty cheap. The boxes are made from Paperboard. This varies is weight and there are different types of paperboard for different uses same as plastic.

My suggestion is to look at food pkg in your house. take apart your cereal box and see how it is put together or same with product pkg. this will show you what really goes into a box and how it is actually made.

Also go to goole and type in paper board. you will get tons of info.

awesome thanks for the info guys…

Taylor you’re right I did some thinking today at the art store and at lowes and I think im going to go for a wooden cigar box kinda feel… The flatware is titled streamline so I wanted to maintain that look but I think a wooden cigarbox with the right thermaform and some fabric over the plastic can make it spot on…

also had thoughts of incorporating an battery operated LED that cuts on once you open the box… any suggestions on that would be awesome as well

keep em coming and thanks again…


Talked to the Teach today… not allowed to do a wooden box because its just no “realistic” so guess its back to chipboard

there are many options to chipboard. corrugagted one side cardboard, pulp paper (like an egg carton), zip loc/mylar bags, vac form shells, heat shrink plastics (like meat at the deli), injection molded boxes (like new apple nano boxes), etc.

what would be interesting to pursue is some sort of packaging that had a post packaging use. there are lots of opportunities for something like flatware- cutlery table holder, trivet (cork?), table name cards, napkin holder, etc.

being a student project, id also encourage you to think “outside the box” (pun intended).



You have not provided much information as to the design brief or your design solution for flatware, but you seem to have jumped from ‘design a box’, to ‘make the box’ rather quickly. Instead of seeking solutions in the Art Store or Lowe’s, perhaps a visit to the retail environment to see how flatware and analogous products (dishware, cookware, place mats etc) are displayed.
Clarify what the purpose of the ‘box’: transportation, protection, display, retail, convert to purchase, storage…! The ‘box’ should reflect the what influenced the flatware design solution. If mass produced stamped/formed out of one piece SS, does your package solution need to address sets of 6, 8 or 12?
As rkuchinsky indicated, a ‘box’ does not necessarily mean a ‘box’. If the brief, or your solution, is a singular set for use or retail, perhaps your solution is a simple as wrapping a set of flatware in a place mat. I remember one student ‘box’ solution (years ago) being a hand stitched velvet bag with drawstrings and monogram. This reflected the hand-crafted, jewelry-like design solution, and also the positioning for those eccentric gastronomes who could never find a knife and fork clean enough in any restaurant, so always brought their own. Not something you would expect to find at your local Wal-Mart.

sorry for the lack of clarity.

For our first assignment we had to make a set of flatware (just a knife for and spoon) out of Paper, Blue Foam and Balsa Foam, and have a nice paint finish. I chose to do a “streamline” theme and it came out alright. I don’t think painting blue foam was the smartest idea as over half the classes foam dissolved after primer and paint.

Here is a link to what the flatware pieces look like. It is a metallic blue (sorry for the lighting just did it on my desk ) and although kind of bulky they maintain good ergonomics…

Our assignment is to create packaging for this flatware by building a box and using thermaform for the flatware molds. As far as building the “box” is concerned the professor already shot down my idea of a wooden box saying it just was not realistic.
The box needs to fit the thermaform inside and have a full professional printing with logo and information supporting your flatware piece…

So for right now I suppose I’m going to have to resort to chipboard like everyone else :cry: The professor appreciates people doing things different, but only to an extent…

This is due Next Tuesday March 4th.