In November 2023, Apple began an email, web, and Apple Store campaign using the tagline “All kinds of wonderful” online and “Wonder awaits” on Apple Store windows. The visuals included a stylized white Apple logo with a gift bow and winter scene.
A simplified version of the logo was printed on Apple’s retail store bags to replace the typical solid gray Apple logo. This paper bag is one example of the 2023 holiday Apple Store bags.
The blog post includes a photo I captured of the winter logo on the window of the Apple Store Michigan Avenue in Chicago on November 5, 2023.
Beginning in 2020 Apple began offering Apple Watch band designs that were specifically sized to wrists. These bands included the Apple Watch Solo Loop and the Apple Watch Braided Solo Loop. These Apple Watch bands were available in sizes 1–12.
In order to allow individuals to determine their Apple Watch Band size, Apple provided three methods:
1. Printable Tool (online PDF)
2. Everyday items (using a “tailor’s measuring tape” or a narrow strip of paper)
3. Sizing Tool (in-store paper tool)
Options 1 and 2 were available online. After measuring your wrist, Apple provided an online converter that allowed users to enter their wrist size to a maximum of 10 15/16 inch (although the Solo Loop only fit wrists to a maximum of 8 2/16 inches).
This Sizing Tool was available to Apple Store Customers. The tools includes the directions on the outer package, instructing individuals through diagrams to open the package, peel back an adhesive dot, wrap the tool around the wrist, and determine the band size based upon the location of arrows printed on the Sizing Tool.
This example is unopened and was obtained at the Apple Store Michigan Avenue in Chicago in December 2021.
This brochure described the Apple Store’s “one to one” personal training services in 2007. The brochure reads:
“There’s no better way to learn more, or learn it faster, than with one-to-one personal training sessions at the Apple Store. Our trainers—experts in all things Apple—create a program customized to your level of experience. You can choose individual sessions covering everything from getting started on a Mac to making more out of your memories. Or explore any topic you like. Personal training sessions are designed to move at your pace and provide the support end guidance you need, whether you are new to Mac or ready to master the latest pro software.”
The lessons included: Getting Started on your Mac, Mac 101, Digital Photography, Moviemaking, Podcasting, Building Your Website, and Present and Publish.
This brochure is stapled and measures 4.25 x 6.5. All spreads are 2 pages, except the last fold-out, 3-page spread.
This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features an eMac on a white background on the front. The back has the headline “Fast. Affordable. Simply amazing.” and includes specifications of the two available configurations.
iPod “Take One” store brochures (2004)—Each of these set of three 1-page brochures measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features an iPod (“Actual Size”) on the front with a bright pink, bright green, or bright blue background. The back features a photo of the back of the iPod photo with a description of features in an ink color that matches the front. The iPod image is perforated and can be punched out.
iPod mini “Take One” store brochure (2004)—This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features a pink iPod mini on a white background on the front with various features highlighted. The back has a quirky suggestion about naming playlists and a photo of the back of the iPod mini. The iPod mini image is perforated and can be punched out.
iPod photo “Take One” store brochures (2005)—Each of these set of three 1-page brochures measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features an iPod photo (30GB and 60GB) on the front along with a closeup of the color screen. There are three versions of this design: a green-to-blue gradient background, a yellow-to-green gradient background, and a pink-to-yellow gradient background. The back features a photo of the full iPod photo with a Photo Library on the screen and descriptions of the iPod’s features.
iPod nano “Take One” store brochure (2005)—This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches. The front shows a hand holding an iPod nano between the thumb and forefinger with the headline “1,000 songs. Impossibly small. iPod nano.” on a black background. The back has a white background, pictures both a white and black iPod nano, and describes the device’s features.
iPod shuffle “Take One” store brochure (January 2005)—This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features an iPod shuffle on a bright green background on the front with a stylized “shuffle” graphic in light green in the background. The back describes the iPod shuffle, shows the back of the device (“Actual Size”), and pictures line drawings of four available Apple accessories: Sport Case, Dock, Armband, and Battery Pack.
Mac mini (original) “Take One” store brochure (January 2005)—This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches. The front features a photo of the Mac mini and the headline “The most affordable Mac ever.” on a white background. The front also includes a diagram of the Mac mini set up with “your existing keyboard, mouse, and display.” and the iLife logo. The back has the headline “Moves at the speed of life.” and includes specifications of the two available configurations. The back has the headline “Introducing Mac mini” and includes a photo of the back of the computer (presumably to show its ports) and specifications of the two available configurations.
eMac “Take One” store brochure (May 2005)—This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features an eMac on a white background on the front with various features highlighted. The back has the headline “Fast. Affordable. Simply amazing.” and includes specifications of the two available configurations.
Mac mini “Take One” store brochure (July 2005)—This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features a Mac mini on a light blue background on the front with various features highlighted. The back has the headline “Full featured, compact, Mac mini” and includes a photo of the back of the computer (presumably to show its ports) and specifications of the two available configurations.
iBook G4 “Take One” store brochure (July 2005)—This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features an iBook G4 on a light blue background on the front with various features highlighted. The back has the headline “Moves at the speed of life.” and includes specifications of the two available configurations (12-inch and 14-inch).
iMac G5 “Take One” store brochure (October 2005)—This 1-page brochure measures 4.375 x 6.5 inches and features the headline “The new iMac G5” on a gray-blue background on the front. The front photo shows a hand holding a white Apple Remote pointing at the iMac G5 screen with the Front Row (media) interface. The back includes specifications of the 17- and 20-inch configurations.
I remember picking up this catalog at an Apple Store in 2004. It is large for a catalog at 11 x 17 inches and is printed on heavy matte paper. Each spread features “lifestyle” photos of people using then-current Apple products in everyday settings. Each product is then described in detail including features, uses, and available peripherals. Full-page “case studies” from regular people using the products in real life are also included.
The first product featured is iPod. The 2004 models included iPod with scroll wheel (with a monochrome display), iPod Photo (color display), and iPod mini (monochrome display and available in four colors).
The next spread highlights the iMac G5. These were Apple’s second flat-panel iMac models that were available with 17 or 20-inch “widescreen flat panel” displays. The iLife apps are mentioned here in holiday contexts.
Apple “notebooks” are shown next, including the white 12 and 14-inch iBook models and the 12, 15, and 17-inch PowerBook G4 models. The AirPort Express is mentioned as a solution for streaming music and wireless printing in the home.
The last 2-page spread includes “A day in the life of a Genius,” and highlights in-store workshops and presentations.
The back page shows a map of the United States and the locations of all Apple Stores worldwide. Six happy Apple customers are also featured with their Apple Store purchases across the US.
Apple opened its first two retail Apple Store locations on May 19, 2001. The first opened at 10AM (EST) at Tysons Corner Center in McLean, Virginia, and the second opened three hours later (at 10AM PST) at the Glendale Galleria in Glendale, California. Here in Illinois, Woodfield, Apple’s fifth Apple Store, opened in Schaumburg about three months later.
From the very beginning, Apple used their Apple Stores not just as a store, but as a place to showcase the Apple lifestyle. According to the first Apple Store press release:
“At each Apple store, knowledgeable salespeople will be able to demonstrate Macs running innovative applications like iTunes and iMovie, as well as Mac OS X, Apple’s revolutionary new operating system. All of the Macs are connected to the Internet, and several are connected to digital lifestyle products that complement the Mac experience, such as digital cameras, digital camcorders, MP3 players, and handheld organizers.”
In 2021, there are now over 500 stores in 25 countries. I have visited at least 17 Apple Stores—15 in the United States, one in Toronto (Apple Eaton Centre), and one in Berlin (Apple Kurfürstendamm).
This part of my collection highlights Apple’s retail store bags. The designs transitioned through a few different plastic options and are now made from recycled paper.
Apple has also created a few limited edition bags over the years used during product releases, such as a black iPhone bag in 2007. While I have a few of these limited bags, this collection focuses upon the standard, day-to-day bag designs.
In my research for this post, I have found no source that mentions the history of Apple Store bags. Some of the stock photo sites, as well as my own Apple Store photos, show shoppers in Apple Stores carrying the bags of the time.
All Apple Store plastic bags were two-ply, and each layer used a slightly different material. The earliest blue version of the Apple Store bag used a bright blue interior plastic and a translucent clear exterior. This drawstring bag was printed with a white Apple logo and the web address apple.com repeated around the drawstring in the Apple Garamond font. I only have two sizes of this bag, a medium and large (compared to all other bags). I’m not certain if a small bag in this design existed.
The next plastic bag was white with a black Apple logo and the web address apple.com repeated around the drawstring in the Apple Garamond font. I have a small, medium, and large version of this drawstring bag design.
The next two plastic bag styles were white with a silver Apple logo. One style featured a silver Apple logo and the web address apple.com printed once below the logo in the Apple Myriad font. A later design featured only a silver Apple logo. These styles came in three sizes and all used drawstrings, however, the medium sizes were threaded in a manner that the bags could be used as backpacks.
Apple’s current paper bags were awarded a United States Patent (15062993) for a “bag container formed of white solid bleached sulfate paper with at least 60% post-consumer content” along with additional bag innovations outlined in the patent document. Perhaps most interesting, and printed on the bottom of the bag, is a callout for its “circular-knit handle made entirely from paper.” The versions I have are made from 80% post-consumer content.
My collection includes fourteen different bag styles (not including several limited-edition bags). I hope to update this post as I learn more details. The bag “families” are shown in this post. Separate posts in this blog highlight each bag design individually.