Building blocks for imaginative minds

Published 25 September 2016
​Corrugated boxes and packaging make excellent toys and building blocks. So why not make the boxes the product?

GIGI Bloks designs and markets toys made of blocks. The company came to Stora Enso with a wonderful product concept and design, but it needed another perspective on how refine and optimise the ultimate solution for production and logistics.

“Stora Enso executed our engineer’s design within millimetres,” says Ilona Viluma who is the ‘Chief Builder’ at GIGI Bloks. She and her husband formed GIGI Bloks, dreaming about building blocks for big made-up play worlds – houses, desks, animals, ships, wherever the imagination might take you. Big, but also natural.

“I grew up surrounded by nature and still live with it in my heart,” adds Ilona. “I lived in a country house which was located next to woods and beautiful plains. These values present themselves in the choice of our material – only natural, borrowed from nature.”

She continues, “We choose not to complicate our natural toys with predesigned colors, shapes or one way instructions. The neutrality of the board is the perfect choice to spark the imagination, allowing the children to further express themselves by drawing on the blocks. I think most grownups have experienced that moment when they bring home something important like a TV or refrigerator and then the kids take over the cardboard box and packaging to play with. This was the starting point for our concept.”

From design to production to consumer, Stora Enso has provided a solution that is easy to produce and easy to use, as well as friendly on the environment, minimising waste and the use of glue. The building blocks are made of microflute corrugated board and produced by the Stora Enso packaging mill in Riga, Latvia.

Stora Enso’s design and material performance solutions are supported by our DesignStudios, located in Europe and China. The DesignStudios have more than 60 designers to address packaging design needs using 3D simulations, virtual stores, eye-tracking and heat-mapping technologies.

Overall, Stora Enso takes a holistic approach in meeting customer strategies and challenges, with design, renewable fibres, rightweighting, technical customer service, automation services, eFlow supply chain service and recycling services.

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