Pentagon Design & Karl Fazer Celebrate Finland's Independence With This Modern Keepsake Box


By: Casha Doemland

With the 100-year anniversary of Finland’s independence from Russia, Karl Fazer, one of the country's most beloved chocolates, decided to redesign their classic blue box in a way that celebrated Finland in a modern way.

"The objective was to create a box, which is more than a gift package—a keepsake—which has a life of its own after the original use,” says Virva Haltsonen, Senior Strategist at Pentagon Design. “The result is a combination of the iconic blue color and a timeless and playful illustration with themes inspired by Finland."


Since the tins were launching during the Christmas holiday, Karl Fazer hoped to create a commemorative tin that could have a life beyond its original use.

“The design was inspired by Finnish Folklore, especially Kalevala, the epic tales and mythology that were compiled by Elias Lönnrot in the early 19th Century when Finland was still a part of the Russian empire,” says Haltsonen. “The heroic tales were originally sung by Karelian storytellers. Additionally, the Finnish nature influenced the illustration.”

Elements include a swan, the national bird of Finland, a bear, the mythic creature from Kalevala, and a lily (Convallaria majalis), the national flower of Finland. These are all interpreted in a contemporary and playful manner in the illustrations.”  


While Pentagon Design discovered a brilliant way to redesign the Centennial tin, the journey to get there was extremely challenging, as it often is with designing iconic brands.

"In 2001, the Fazer Blue color, Pantone C280, became Finland's first color trademark," shares Haltsonen. "In the tin box project, we had the freedom to create unique assets for the package, still utilizing strong visual assets of the brand."

The Karl Fazer tin box was first started in 2012, and was a celebration of the chocolatier’s 90-year old recipe.


Throughout the entirety of the project,  Pentagon worked closely with Fazer to develop a design strategy, and that cooperation served as a strong jumping point and a source of inspiration. “The theme and realization of the illustrations turned out especially great, and we have had very good feedback from the client and consumers on these,” adds Haltsonen.

Once again, the Finnish favorite is reborn with a centennial design that's set to stand the test of the time and any occasion.  



Casha Doemland

LA-based and Georgia-bred, Casha Doemland spends her days crafting poetry and freelance writing. Over the last two years, she’s been published in a variety of publications and zines around the world. When she’s not nerding out with words, you can catch her watching a classic film, trekking around the globe or hanging out with a four-pound Pomeranian.

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