Stuart Werle

In 1974 I formed Werle Design Associates, which specializes in Consumer Packaged–Goods, Structural Package Design, Branding - Retail & Corporate and Brand'strategy. I am the President–and

Creative Director.

OCAD University designers take home top packaging prize

Photo of competition winners
Image of front and back of cleaner packaging
Monday, June 29, 2015 - 4:00am

Dora Poon (BDes, Industrial Design, 2015) and Zhi Gao (fourth-year Graphic Design student) emerged victorious at the 2015 student design competition organized by the Packaging Consortium (PAC), beating out rivals from Durham, Seneca, Humber, Mohawk and George Brown colleges. This is the second year in a row that an OCAD University team has scored first place.

Professor Stuart Werle offered the contest as a project option for his Packaging Design 2 students in winter 2015. The competition rules stipulated that each team design packaging for a 710 mL bottle of Walmart’s Great Value Eco toilet bowl cleaner. Werle encouraged participating students to demonstrate how their branding and packaging for that product could translate to other items in the Great Value Eco line.

With only one entry permitted for each institution, Werle formed a committee — including Mhairi Robertson, who won the 2014 competition — to select OCAD U’s entry. Members chose Poon’s effort as the top design; however, seeing great strength in Gao’s design, Werle encouraged the two to collaborate.

On June 17, Poon and Gao pitched their work in a seven-minute presentation to more than 200 packaging-industry leaders at the PACEX Toronto packaging show. After all the teams had spoken, the audience voted in real time, with Poon and Gao coming out on top. For Werle, “the key to their design was the blending of very strong branding, packaging graphics and bottle form with truly unique and innovative sustainable elements, including a 5X concentrate EcoPak® that would enable consumers to reuse each bottle without having to recycle them.”

Mhairi Robertson wins Packaging Consortium design competition

Mhairi Robertson’s jive+ winning design.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 - 4:00am

Earlier this month, fourth-year Graphic Design student Mhairi Robertson was selected as the top designer in the Packaging Consortium, formerly the Packaging Association of Canada, (PAC) student design competition.

The PAC competition challenged design students from Seneca/York, Durham College, Humber College, Mohawk College, George Brown College and OCAD University to create packaging for a hypothetical Berry Blend real fruit smoothie with added protein line of products. Each institution was assigned a different form of packaging, with one leading student submission to be selected to go forward into the competition. OCAD U was assigned to create a foil pouch package form.

With guidance from Associate Professor Stuart Werle, six OCAD U students participated in the project with three presenting final designs earlier in September. A small committee of faculty and students convened to pick the best design to move forward in the challenge, with Robertson’s jive+ design winning out.

“Mhairi understood from the very beginning that her design needed to sit between two different categories, the energy drink category based on the need to be sporty and energetic while appealing to a younger demographic, and the second, the health beverage category that needed to look nutritious, tasty and promoting a healthy lifestyle,” said Werle.

Robertson presented her design at the PAC’s “A Day in the Life” Symposium at the Steam Whistle Brewery on October 1 to an audience of more than 200 conference delegates who voted to make her the top designer via mobile devices.