S’well bottle is the wildly successful fashion brand that has taken the world by storm with its hydration magic. Founded in 2010 by Sarah Kauss with a mission to rid the world of plastic bottles, the original S’well bottle has already reached icon status. With its sleek and distinct shape, countless numbers of styles featuring irresistible colors and patterns, and the built-in functionality to keep your beverages cold for 24 hours and hot for 12 hours, S’well has reimagined the bottle industry. It is currently featured in the MOMA Design Store and is the darling of high-end boutiques and department stores around the world. Its popularity has brought about copycats and knock-offs, and also growing demand from mass retailers who want to get a piece of the S’well magic.
While S’well is a fashionable, premium, and sophisticated brand, its diffusion line was created as a bubbly, playful, and approachable alternative to be sold in Target for the first 6 months and ultimately in mass retailers worldwide. In thinking of S’well’s diffusion line like a little sibling to S’well, we set out to create a punchy and memorable name (endorsed by S’well), a distinct and feminine shape, as well as a friendly logo and packaging that showed off the structure and colors and patterns.
Part of the hydration magic is the S’well name. Its unique spelling, with the apostrophe breaking up the word, makes the brand name both ownable and clever. We explored hundreds of names, and focused on options that were short, memorable, and uplifting – the same formula used for S’well. Because this was a diffusion line, it was critical that the name not compete with the S’well name. S’ip was ultimately selected, a name that directly speaks to hydration and follows suit with an apostrophe breaking up the word. In order to effectively leverage the power of the S’well brand name and clearly communicate the new brand is a diffusion line, it was best to endorse S’ip with S’well: S’ip by S’well.
Because S’ip was to be endorsed by S’well, it meant that both logos would have to sync together and complement one another. It was also important for the S’ip logo to help convey its position as a younger, more playful and approachable diffusion brand. We utilized a modern and friendly script, with more rounded letterforms to feel more youthful. We also repurposed the same apostrophe used in the S’well name, but swapped the color relationship within the “droplet” to add another point of differentiation.
When designing the new S’ip bottle shape, it was imperative that we create something recognizably different from the S’well shape but equally distinctive. Like S’well, stainless steel was the desired material of choice, as it’s both eco-friendly and helps keep drinks hot or cold – though not for the 24 hours for cold and 12 hours for hot as is the case for S’well. The selected bottle design is sleek, with clean lines, no curves or indents, allowing the playful prints and bright colors that S’ip offers to stand out on shelf.
Like S’well, there’s something about S’ip that makes you want to reach out and grab it. With that in mind, when designing the packaging, it was important that shoppers would be able to do so. The fashionable black packaging features more than half of the bottle, so it’s easy for shoppers to see and select the color or pattern they desire. The custom die also features a bubble outline around the S’ip branding at the bottom of the structure, which reinforces its friendly and approachable positioning.
“So proud to bring S'ip to the world, and couldn't have picked a better partner!”
CEO & Founder of S'well