Mr. Bubble Bank with embossed information & hangtag (photos from Roadsidepictures’ Flickr Photostream)
Mr. Bubble Bank with printed information (photos from Collectors Online Mall)
I’ve been given permission to occasionally publish some posts from Packaging | UQAM—the excellent bilingual packaging blog by Sylvain Allard, director of the Graphic Design Program at L’Université du Québec à Montréal.
The words and reminiscences below are not mine, but his:
It was the late 60s. I was sitting, legs dangling on the shelf of a metallic cart, pushed almost aggressively by my busy mother. We strolled along the aisles zigzagging and following the same weekly routine in this “new type” of grocery called the Supermarket.
We were at that time still lulled into the illusion of postwar that thinking everything was still possible and especially convinced of the infinite resources the planet had. The extraordinary production effort that had nourished World War II had quickly been replaced by a new concept called consumption.
This place had something magical and reassuring as it gathered in one place all the goods now essential to modern life. Each package there was all more useful and functional than the last. It was a new era opened to infinite idealism opportunities.
It is among all these wonders that I saw it for the first time in the distance. It was there: a tiny pink spot in a pile of mundane forms. Despite the distance, I could recognize the shape of its head and the smoothness of its pink body. I pointed it out to my accelerating mom, but she seemed insensitive to the charm of such splendor. Incidentally I seized it on the go with such conviction, that my mother couldn’t refuse it to me and bought it.
I was my first purchase and therefore, this Mr. Bubble bottle became an icon of my childhood. I do not remember what sensation or odor this bubble soap had, but the bottle accompanied my baths for years.
I found out later that my mother was in fact refilling the same bottle with another brand of soap, probably cheaper elsewhere. It didn’t matter much to me. It was the packaging that attracted me first anyway and I was thrilled to find it has a second life as a piggy bank.
The packaging was the product.
–Sylvain Allard, Packaging | UQAM
(Another vintage Mr. Bubbles commercial and Mr. Bubbles boxes follow, after the fold…)
(See also: Package as Body)