The Etched Images Story
As the popularity of wine grew, so did the number of wineries. This resulted in a proliferation of wine labels on the retail shelves and it became more difficult for wine brands to make an impact on consumers. Wineries started to be on a constant lookout for fresh, eye-catching packaging. They began using outside marketing agencies, high-caliber graphic design artists, unique label materials, new bottle styles and other techniques to make their wines stand out in a crowd. At this point, Etched Images™ became a “glass decorating” service for the wine industry.
Another Etched Images™ innovation is NoChip Dip™ dipping wax used to create a capsule or medallion. This alternative to the metal foil comes in twenty glossy colors, including five metallics. Now the most popular dipping wax in North America, NoChip Dip™ offers extremely accurate color consistency and a high-end look.
Another popular technique developed by David Lincoln is the interior darkening (blackening) of a bottle to create the appearance of a full bottle of red wine. Blackened bottles offer a cost-effective solution for enhancing and displaying label artwork.
As wine enthusiasts, many of whom are top management/owners of large companies, discovered the uniqueness and beauty of etched and painted bottles, Etched Images™ began to get orders for wine bottles etched with corporate and personal logos and messages. The etched wine bottle became more than a Christmas gift; it became a year-round promotional gift used to celebrate special events and milestones.
Event meeting planners now promote Napa Valley as an ideal destination for their corporate clients and etched and painted bottles of wine have become a perfect gift and memento. These planners, and those based from other areas, now comprise an important segment of Etched Images’ customer base.
Although there certainly is competition, Etched Images™ has earned a reputation for high-quality design, workmanship, and service, thus putting the Company in a position to compete for business in a strong, growing market. Unlike a majority of its competitors, Etched Images™ is staffed by skilled artisans, and offers painting and waxing techniques seldom found in standard etching organizations.
Housed since late 1993 at 1758 Industrial Way in Napa, Etched Images relocated to larger, more efficient quarters in the same complex in July of 2001. The Company is truly proud of its relatively small but handpicked staff of 15, some of whom have been with Etched Images™ since its “humble beginning.”
Remembering Stu McFarland
Stu McFarland was proud of his company, Etched Images. He enjoyed spending time every morning with his strong cup of coffee perusing the internet researching everything related to the wine industry. He was always looking for innovative ideas to improve the quality and customer service as well as increase the customer base and reward his employees for their excellent work.
In 1992, Stu watched his brother-in-law, David Lincoln, etch and paint wine bottles for wineries and corporations as a one-man operation. David was a wonderful artist and Stu could see the value in his skills. They decided to team up with Stu’s management skills and David’s artistic skills to form Etched Images. Believe it or not, they started in a chicken coop, graduated to the barn and then a corporate order came in for 30,000 bottles. Time to move to a warehouse!
Etched Images has continued to grow in both size and reputation. It is now housed in seven bays of a warehouse in Napa. We ship hand-etched, hand-painted bottles as well as our trademarked NoChip Dip wax all over the world. It’s always fun to get a phone call from Australia or Japan or the Island of Crete!
While we have all been saddened by Stu’s passing in June, we are even more committed to keeping Etched Images as a premier wine bottle decorating company known for it high-quality design, skilled artisans, and excellent service. It was Stu’s dream and we will keep it alive!