I wanted to do a fun, personal project that allowed me to play with typefaces while telling a story about my family history.
Since packaging design is one of my favourite things to create, I decided to showcase part of my lineage with alcohol bottle labels.
Grandpa on my Mum’s side was born in a small mountain town in the region of Umbria in Italy. Montefalco Sagrantino is a style of Italian wine made in the Province of Perugia, Umbria, where the medieval town of Gubbio resides.
The town’s most famous story, from around the year 1220, is that of “The Wolf of Gubbio”; a man eating wolf that was tamed by St. Francis of Assisi and who then became a docile resident of the city.
My Italian Grandpa went on to marry my Grandma, who was Irish. My middle name traces back to her maiden family name. That family was from a town called Portarlington.
The town, historically called Cooletoodera (from Irish: Cúil an tSúdaire, meaning “nook of the tanner”), has been pleasantly situated on the River Barrow since 1667. And since we’re talking about Ireland, the fighting Irish comes to mind. A ‘Donnybrook’ is what you’d call a big brawl, public quarrel or dispute.
Both my Italian Grandpa and Irish Grandma eventually moved to where my Mum was born in West Sussex; a historic county in South East England.
Situated near a range of chalk hills called the South Downs, this area has a deep history of flint mining starting around 4000 BCE. During the iron age, Cissbury Ring, one of Britain’s largest hill forts, was built around 250 BCE.