Mischievous Dancing Duppy Adorns Spiced Rum Label

Rum brand extension builds on original bottle label graphics, with a playful, shapeshifting creature from Caribbean folklore, putting the focus on the exuberant nature of drinking rum.

The Duppy Share Spiced label depicts a duppy dancing as it enjoys the rum.
The Duppy Share Spiced label depicts a duppy dancing as it enjoys the rum.

U.K premium rum brand The Duppy Share has launched a new variant, The Duppy Share Spiced, in the U.K., with a package design that takes the artwork from the original brand design to a new level. In 2015, creative agency B&B Studio created The Duppy Share brand, which enabled the product to find market share as well as reshape the long established rum category. According to B&B, rum is a thriving sector: Rum sales in the U.K. hit the £1 billion mark in 2018, with the Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) citing consumers’ interest in craft rum as a cause for the rise.

The Duppy Share Spiced is presented in a thinner bottle with a longer neck, making it easier for bartenders to work with behind a busy bar.The Duppy Share Spiced is presented in a thinner bottle with a longer neck, making it easier for bartenders to work with behind a busy bar.The Duppy Share Spiced was developed with award-winning drinks consultant Robin Honhold and introduces pineapple, kola nut, and Caribbean spices, to create a spicier partner to The Duppy Share Aged. The result is a versatile craft rum for cocktails and to pair with mixers.

Packaging graphics for the new spiced variant build on B&B’s original identity for The Duppy Share Aged and, according to the agency, are an example of how effective design for a brand extension can retain and empower the story behind the original identity, while standing strong as a product in its own right.

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Says founder of The Duppy Share, George Frost, “We wanted to diversify our appeal to reach a younger consumer, and asked B&B to create a new brand strategy and design to make our new Spiced variant feel accessible and relevant to partygoers and social drinkers.”

A UV element to the packaging enables the bottle to come alive at night.A UV element to the packaging enables the bottle to come alive at night.To achieve this, B&B focused on the element of mischief—the core of The Duppy Share brand. Inspired by Caribbean folklore, the design for the original variety tells the story of duppies—or malevolent ghosts or spirits—emerging at night to steal the best of the rum from each barrel as it ages. The Duppy Share Spiced goes a step further, depicting a duppy dancing as it enjoys the rum. Placed front-of-pack, the illustrative design brings instant shelf stand-out and tells the brand story, building its heritage in a clear and immediate way. 

The eye is drawn to this shape-shifting creature with its crocodile head and feathered legs, dancing playfully across the bottle. In the background, visual elements from the original Duppy Share Aged design are subtly woven in: the Caribbean landscape, the sun, and the gold and orange color palette. Specifically designed with the on-trade in mind, The Duppy Share Spiced is presented in a thinner bottle with a longer neck, making it easier for bartenders to work with behind a busy bar. However, The Duppy Share brand’s shouldered-bottle shape remains as another visual parallel between The Duppy Share Spiced and the original Duppy Share Aged design.

Says B&B Creative Partner Shaun Bowen, “With the introduction of Spiced we wanted to establish a clear point of difference through a shift in how the brand tells its story through design. We also introduced a UV element to the packaging, enabling the bottle to come alive at night—just as the mischievous Duppy comes out and dances in the moonlight.”

Adds Frost, “Following the success of our initial launch, it was a no-brainer to work with the team at B&B again. Putting the focus on the exuberant nature of drinking rum, the team has created a design that stays true to the overarching brand identity, whilst introducing a immediately impactful bottle through a visual representation of Duppy. We think people are going to love this new bottle almost as much as they’re going to love our new rum.”

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