Malaysia | 2021
Magical. Mystical. Moonlit. Mid-autumn — a season within a season. Wrapped in lore and time-honoured tradition, the Mid-Autumn Festival is a celebration that few other cultural fetes can contest. As we poured over our research into the history that surrounds the mid-autumn festival, we realised that it was never a singular thread that encapsulates the festival. Instead, it has always been the coalescence of different layers that shaped the narrative. Within every facet, there were layers to be found. Collections of myths and legends, diverse interpretations of customs, a fusion of cultures. Even the ubiquitous pastries are moulded with overlapping colours, textures and flavours. It was therefore this vein that directed the flow of our project when designing the Mid-Autumn Festival mooncake gift set that features teaware from Noritake’s whimsical pastel-hued Carnivale collection. The experience of the person interacting with the project was paramount. Our intention: to inspire awe with every layer peeled back. As an ode to the idea of “a season within a season”, we created “a surprise within a surprise”. A patterned sleeve honouring classical Chinese motifs slides off to reveal a pristine, solid case that would impeccably adorn any mantle. Unlock it and you’ll find the breathtaking multilayered pop-up vignette of the Noritake Carnivale collection transformed into a fantasy fairground — dressed in ornate, fluid trimmings and a soft, cotton candy palette — a curtain-raiser to exquisite porcelain teaware residing within. A separating panel conceals the prize, lending an extra element of suspense while adding dimension to the tableau. Beneath, sheets of illustrated decals spark interactive personalisation, creation of memories and shared moments. Finally, discover the fine china and sweet delicacies, each carefully cushioned like a precious gem. As a final sprinkle of wonder, we looked at the one element that ties the tale together: moonlight. And so, our curtain call is but a tiny switch, nestled in a corner. Flip it and watch the fairground come alight with a glow so surreal, it leaves a sparkle in the eye that will ensure that these traditions stay alive till the next generation comes by.