Leith Porter beer cans.

Beer packaging raising the bar

By Ben Walker on 03 June 2021

With summer so close we can almost taste it; we couldn’t resist giving you the lowdown on our current favourite beer packaging.

Getting noticed in the fast-evolving drinks industry is a monumental challenge, so it’s refreshing to see so many beer brands prioritising design. We know it’s what’s on the inside that counts, but we just can’t help being influenced by great packaging.

After much deliberation we have chosen our top UK based brands and there’s something for everyone (if you’re a fan of beer that is)…


Partizan Brewing

Many brands use illustration to distil their unique personalities, but few do it as well as South Bermondsey based micro-brewery, Partizan. Their labels depict playful, expressive, and often abstract illustrations, beautifully designed by artist Alec Doherty. Full of character, each bottle truly is a work of art in its own right.

Partizan Brewing beer can.
Photo credit: Matt Leeves

And Union

Modern Bavarian beer, And Union, has gone back to basics with a minimalist approach to packaging and it’s definitely working for them. They use eye-catching colours and refined typography to clearly distinguish a beer for every day of the week. If you take a closer look, their cans are embossed with geometric shapes, adding a tactile dimension to the understated and effortlessly cool design.

And Union beer cans, against a blue background.
Photo credit: And Union

Vocation Brewery

Alluding to the quality of the product, Vocation’s packaging pairs dark backgrounds and bold typography with linear, tattoo style illustrations that seamlessly align with their logo. The craft brewery company has extended their strong visual identity to their special edition beers, using playful illustrations and creative names to highlight their characteristics.

Vocation Brewery beer can design.


Campervan Brewery

We couldn’t write an article about beer packaging and not shout out one of our incredible locals in Leith, Edinburgh. Adorned with retro patterns and bright colour combinations, their signature beers just scream summer and perfectly embody the ethos of the brand.

Three Campervan Brewery can designs.
Photo credit: Nicci Peet for Campervan Brewery

Beavertown Brewery

Featuring everything from robots to skeletons, Beavertown’s vivid colours and intricate, cartoon inspired illustrations by Nick Dwyer evoke a sense of nostalgia. Each can of beer weaves a narrative, creating a memorable experience and that captures customers’ imagination.

Beacertown Brewery beer can design.
Photo credit: Beavertown Brewery

Williams Bros. Brewing Co.

This independent Scottish brewing company effortlessly combine traditional and contemporary design across their eclectic packaging. Alluding to the heritage of the brand, the logo depicts a crest, whilst visual influences range from tribal design to popular culture.

William Bros. Brewing Co. beer can designs.
Photo credit: Williams Bros. Brewing Co.

Camden Town Brewery

The signature red and white colour palette and sign writing style typography that adorns Camden Town Brewery’s classic lager is instantly recognisable. However, the London based craft beer brand hasn’t stopped there. Playful variations of their simple yet effective aesthetic have been rolled out across the range, so whether you’re in the mood for a ‘Show off’ juicy lager, or ‘Week nite’ any day lager, they have you covered.

Camden Town brewery beer bottle designs.


Stewart Brewing

Edinburgh’s original craft beer brewery, Stewart Brewing, use bright colours and striking geometric designs to differentiate their beers. A modern twist on tartan weave patterns, the beautifully crafted designs incorporate a vertical black strip, drawing the eye to their refined, linear logo.

A close-up of Stewart Brewing beer bottle design.


North Brewing Co

Reminiscent of album cover artwork, James Ockelford’s distinctive designs for Leeds based North Brewing Co are the perfect fusion of music, art, and beer. Adorned with geometric shapes, optical illusions and contrasting colours, each unique design encompasses the personality of the brand and compliments their irresistible flavours.

A close-up of North Brewing Co beer cans.
Photo credit: North Brewing Co

Big Drop Brewing Co.

This alcohol-free craft beer stands out from the crowd in more ways than one. Their drop graphic is superimposed on stylised illustrations, depicting everything from exotic tropical leaves to faraway galaxies to reflect the qualities of each beer. Creating a unique sensory experience, the brand has even created playlists to enjoy with their core range!

Big Drop Brewing Co beer can designs.


Brew Toon

Vintage inspired packaging conveys the authenticity of this brand. Their logo, which takes pride of place on their classic brown bottles, is housed by an anchor, celebrating the brewery’s Peterhead roots. Seasonal flavours are distinguished by vivid colours, which take the form of gradients on selected labels, to create a fresh design that looks good enough to drink.

Brew Toon beer bottle designs.
Photo credit: Brew Toon

We hope this article has provided you with plenty of inspiration to stock your fridge in time for the longer, sunnier days ahead.

We understand the impact design can have on consumer purchasing decisions. If you’re thinking about commissioning irresistible packaging that makes your brand stand out on shelf and online, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’d love to hear all about your project.

Header image photo credit: Nicci Peet for Campervan Brewery

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“Ben and the team at Firefly have been great – creative, friendly, fun and professional from start to finish of our label design project.

Despite us providing a rather vague brief, they completely got what we were looking to achieve and delivered an excellent creative proposal which we are now moving ahead with. They worked with pace and their communication was good throughout. I wouldn’t hesitate to work with them again and would strongly recommend them for any creative requirements.”

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Sales Director
Redcastle

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