"Instructions for setting those goals are provided, as the user is led to discover personal growth throught the use of the affirmation system found under each attribute label of the simulated Chinese takeout menu," says Neumann. The main carrier label is folded into four panels and contains nearly 300 diecut 21⁄8" x 3⁄16" dry-release labels, which let the user select various personal interests and attributes. When the top label is removed there is a reinforcing word or phrase underneath which stays on the carrier.
A registered nurse and minister by education and training, Neumann says, "My private practice and Heartlites Inc. are a natural progression of my 30-plus years in the integration of traditional and metaphysical worlds. I constantly visualize everything in detail, from the products I want to bring to market to where I want to go and how to get there. And this had a direct effect on how quickly we were able to produce our products and get them to the public.". The company accomplished this through trade shows as well as its web site, www.heartlitesinc.com.
"A lot of thought went into the overall product design, to make it not only interesting and fun to use, but also to incorporate the principles of the law of attraction," Neumann says. "For example, the swirls on the takeout container as well as the header card are the universal symbol for gratitude. This is essential to the the user's state of mind for the manifestation process to begin," she adds, "and there's another symbol printed on the top of the takeout container as well as the inside bottom of the container, called a Chokurei, a powerful Reiki symbol used to bring the focus of the universe into the here and now." There are also symbols repeated on the label as well as the header card and even on the takeout container.
Beneath each of the diecut labels is an affirmation to help the user get into alignment with the person they are seeking. According to Neumann, there are no hard and fast rules. "Add or subtract at any time, just have lots of fun doing it," she tells her audience. The user is guided to peel off the labels which suit their tastes and add them to the takeout container. (The absence of adhesive makes it simple to remove labels from the container if desired.) The user is then instructed to create a list of the various affirmations which are most relevant to the personal changes which have to be made in order to support the total process. The chopsticks, which are part of the overall package, can be used to mix in gratitude and and stir in energy. And there is even a metallic sparkle handle on the takeout container which is intended to symbolize the attraction of energy.
When she had the concept of what she wanted in the label, Neumann began contacting various converters, only to be told that what she wanted "couldn't be done". Not one to take no for an answer, Neumann began contacting companies who use a similar, albeit much simpler, concept involving coupon material. One of these companies suggested that she contact Hub Labels, of Hagerstown, MD, USA, and thus a partnership was born. Hub Labels is based in a 110,000 square foot facility and is well known in the industry. (See L&NW's September 2006 issue for the Narrow Web Profile of Hub Labels.)
Manufacturing the label was no simple feat, according to Jon Freed, director Southeast for Hub Labels, even though Hub has upgraded all its presses to 175 line screen and has printed as high as 200 line screen projects. With more than 30 narrow web flexo presses, Hub has carved a niche for being capable of producing nearly anything a customer desires. "I really wasn't sure how we were going to actually pull this off," says Freed, "but with the help of our in-house wizard, Material Manager Arnold Crouse, along with Purchasing Manager Nink Myers, we delivered the Heartlites product to the customer's satisfaction."
"We manufactured the label on a 16" Aquaflex press by first printing the base text on 60# C1S stock," says Crouse, "and then laminated a coupon stock over that. Then we laminated a semigloss stock to that so we could print the top colors." He adds that "other than the extremely large size and the hundreds of diecuts, which we were able to do with a magnetic die from RotoMetrics, the job was pretty much like any four-color process plus 2 PM/1PMS back, run on unsupported film and finished as an 11" x 17" sheet which included fold perfs," Crouse adds.
Final proof of a job well done was in Neumann's comments: "I want to emphasize what a wonderful experience it is to work with Hub Labels. I had no previous experience in any of this, so everything rested on Hub's ability to create what we had visualized." Since the menu label was integral to the success of the entire product, Neumann said that "Hub's taking on the challenge and producing a wonderful, creative and fun offering made everything come together just as we had hoped. We were absolutely astounded at not only how well it all came together but also the exciting reception and recognition of the product at trade shows."
One can only marvel that from May to October 2007 the Create UR Mate was just one of six major products that Heartlites Inc. introduced. "And another version will be coming out shortly," according to Neumann.
Larry Arway worked in sales, marketing and product management at Standard Register for 35 years. He was involved in product design and development, and has worked with major consumer and industrial products companies in North America. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.