L6- Students need Lemons

Project outline

Recently I have discovered the benefits of the lemon from a simple conversation with a friend. She told me that lemons are amazing in the fact they have benefits both inside and outside our bodies. The examples she gave me were

  • Aids in digestion
  • freshens breath
  • removes bad smells from clothes

At this stage I did not have a direct focus for the project, so like the ‘everything about one thing’ project, I decided to research everything about the about the lemon. As a designer, I do like to research into a topic area that I am not so fully aware of, so then I can utilise my creative ideas to process the information design to inform or provoke a new feeling towards what I have discovered. Designing like this, gets me excited, keeps me engaged, makes my design topics unique and makes me feel like my outcomes do make a change to the world.

however I imagined that I wanted to design a tool that would get more people to use the lemon.

Research: Everything about the lemon

  • What is a lemon?
  • Uses of a lemon?
  • How is a lemon produced?
  • History of the lemon?
  • Types of lemon?
  • The best lemon?
  • The biggest lemon?
  • How much does a lemon cost?
  • What countries use lemons?
  • Health benefits of lemons?


  • Berries- lemons are technically berries (as are oranges, watermelons and tomatoes).
  • Name-The word lemon is believed to have been derived from Asian language words for “sour” or “sour fruit.


  • 500 bc- the exact origin of the lemon has remained a mystery, though it is widely presumed that lemons first grew in India, northern Burma, and China.  
  • 0 AD- Lemons entered Europe (near southern Italy) during the time of Ancient Rome. However, they were not widely cultivated.
  • 700 AD- It was later introduced to Persia and the Iraq and Egypt
  • 900 AD century- First recorded literature of lemon. Used in Arabic treatise on farming and use as an ornamental plan in early islamic gardens
  • 1400 AD- During the fifteenth century, sailors consumed lemons to fight off scurvy. The English mandated that all warships and trade vessels provide the fruit, leading to the sailors’ nickname: “limeys”.
  • 1150 AD- it was distributed widely throughout the Arab world and Mediterranean region
  • 1500 AD century- The first substantial lemon cultivation in Europe began in Genoa
  • 1500 AD- was later introduced to the Americas when Christopher Columbus brought lemon seeds to Hispaniola along his voyages.
  • 1700 AD- lemons were increasingly planted in Florida and California, when lemons began to be used in cooking and flavoring.
  • 1900 AD- Lemon was a common first name in America. There were thousands of American boys and girls named Lemon in the 1900 census.

Types of lemon

  • The Avon, first grown in Florida and used primarily for frozen concentrate.
  • The Baboon, a bright yellow Brazilian variety with a flavour similar to lime.
  • The Bearss, which is large and rich in oil, is also known as the “Sicily”, and similar to the “Lisbon”.
  • The Berna, Spain’s leading lemon, is a medium-sized fruit.
  • The Cameron Highlands, a small, round lemon with pale green flesh and many sees was discovered in the Cameron Highlands of Malaysia where it grew wild.
  • The Eureka, America’s top commercial and home-planted lemon, is known for its high juice content and high acid level.
  • The Escondido, a small lemon with little juice and a deep yellow colour, grows near the Escondido River in Nicaragua.
  • The Femminello, one of the oldest Italian lemons, makes up nearly three-quarters of Italy’s lemon production, and is tart and acidy.
  • The Genoa, like the Eureka, thrives in California and was introduced to the state directly from Genoa, Italy.
  • The Interdonato, from Italy and Turkey, is often the earliest lemon of the season. It has low juice content and is mildly bitter.
  • The Lamas, another Turkish lemon, is stored in caves.
  • The Lapithkiotiki, the primary lemon of Cyprus, resembles the Eureka and the Genoa.
  • The Lemonade has a pale yellow skin and tastes like grapefruit.
  • The Lisbon, originally from Portugal, was introduced in California around 1849.
  • The Meyer, a popular domestic plant in California, is a hybrid of a lemon and an orange, which it resembles.
  • The Nepali Oblong, a very juicy crop grown commercially in India, resembles a citron and has medium acidity.
  • The Otaheite, used as a decorative indoor plant, is sometimes ranked as a separate species and bears small, deep yellow fruits.
  • The Perrine, a combination of the Mexican lime and the “Genoa” lemon, is juicy and pale and tastes slightly of lime.
  • The Pink Lemonade, a medium-size lemon, has a striped rind before it matures, and tart pink-tinged flesh.
  • The Ponderosa, a large sized lemon that is often considered a novelty, is used for lemon pies and juice.
  • The Primofiori, a smooth, thin rind lemon, matures first (its name means “first flowers”) during the season in Spain.
  • The Sweet Lemon is a general name for low-acid lemons, also called “limettas”, mostly from the Mediterranean and India.
  • The Villafranca was Florida’s leading lemon for years.
  • The Volkamer, a small, round lemon that originated in Italy, is low in acid and is thought to be a hybrid of a lemon and sour orange.

Uses of lemon

  • Polish-Lemon oil is often used on the unsealed rosewood fingerboards of guitars and other stringed instruments.
  • Beauty-Sephora.com lists 115 lemon-containing beauty products on its website – toothpaste, eye shadow and men’s moisturizer among them.
  • Beauty- For natural highlights, apply lemon juice to your hair daily for a week
  • Preservative-Sprinkling lemon juice on sliced apples, avocados and bananas will help keep them from oxidizing and turning brown.
  • Cleaning agent- Dip a halved lemon in salt for a bit of gentle abrasive power, then scour brass, copper, or stainless-steel pots, pans, and sinks. Rub a cut lemon (sans salt) on aluminum to brighten it. Used lemons tossed in the disposal will deodorise it.
  • Drink- is a southern Italian lemon liqueur traditionally served cold as a digestif. It’s ridiculously easy to make: Combine ½ cup lemon rind strips with 4 cups vodka, cover, and let stand for two weeks; strain and combine with simple syrup made from 3 cups water and 1½ cups sugar. The higher the proof of the vodka, the more lemon flavor your finished product will have.
  • Zester- Round holes yield long, thin strips of lemon rind, perfect for ­garnishing soups or desserts such as cheesecake or ice cream
  • Microplanes- Razor-sharp tiny blades yield finely grated bits that distribute lemon flavor throughout; good for baking or salad dressings.
  • Appearance- U-shaped blade yields long, curling strips, used as the twist in cocktails. Squeezing releases lemon oils into the drink.
  • Candying- Long blade yields wide strips of rind that are perfect for candying or making limoncello.

Contents of Lemon 

  • Acid-Lemon juice contains about five percent citric acid (It is said that the citric acid in lemon juice will dissolve a pearl)
  • Amount-The average lemon holds about three tablespoons of juice.
  • Calories- One lemon contains about 15 calories and 0 grams of fat.
  • The average lemon has about eight seeds.
  • Vitamin C-Lemons are high in vitamin C, which is known to boost the immune system, protect against heart disease, combat cancer, and fight infection. One lemon contains a full day’s supply of ascorbic acid

The best lemon 

  • Selection- To choose a good lemon, look for thin-skinned fruit that is heavy for its size and uniformly yellow.


  • Celebration- In February and March, the people of the French Riviera town Menton celebrated the 75th annual Lemon Festival. Events included parades of lemon floats and acrobats, and an Indian-themed lemon carnival.


  • Fashion-For fashionistas, lemon yellow is the new black: this season check out Tory Burch’s lemon yellow flats, Marc Jacobs’ lemon-yellow floral print dress, The Gap’s yellow Converse sneakers, Steve Madden’s glam yellow pumps, Moschino’s bright yellow car coat, and MAC cosmetics’ Golden Yellow pigment powder.
  • Name of animal- The Lemon Shark is so named for its yellowish skin, and swims in waters from New Jersey to Senegal in Africa.

How long they last 

  • Lemons stay fresh at room temperature, away from sunlight, for about one week. In the refrigerator crisper, they can keep for about a month.
  • Bottled lemon juice We think not. Those cute little plastic lemons do contain lemon juice, but after the juice is reconstituted and mixed with preservatives the taste is notably off, not fresh, a bit harsh and thin. It lasts for months but doesn’t really add that divine fresh-lemon essence.

Production of lemons

  • Tropical and Subtropical regions- Leading producers are the United States, Italy, Spain, Argentina, Turkey, and Greece.
  • Grown on trees- Lemon trees grown from seed produce rough-skinned fruits, often of great size. These rough lemons contain a bitter, unpalatable juice. Year-old rough-lemon seedlings, however, are sometimes used in producing cultivated lemons. Seedlings of other citrus species are more generally used. A bud of a selected lemon variety is grafted on a seedling. After the bud has sprouted, the part of the stem above the bud is removed. The bud thus becomes the trunk of the tree. The trees are spaced 25 to 30 feet (7.5 to 9 m) apart in the orchard. Flowers, fruits, and trees are injured by subfreezing temperatures. In freezing weather, therefore, orchards are warmed by oil heaters, or by wind machines that draw down warm air. They also are protected from frost by warm smoke produced by orchard heaters or commercial smoke machines.
  • Picked- Lemons are picked while still green, because fruits that ripen on the trees do not keep well. The pickers wear gloves and handle the fruits as carefully as eggs, for the slightest scratch or bruise will cause the fruit to decay. Each picker carries a ring 2 ¼ inches (5.7 cm) in diameter and cuts off every fruit that is too large to pass through the ring.
  • Stored- The lemons are stored in dark, well-ventilated curing houses. The cured fruits develop tough, silky, yellow skins, and can be stored for several months.

Preparation for lemons

  • Juicing- Before juicing, roll a room-temperature lemon under your palm to break down the cells inside the fruit that hold liquid. If a fruit is especially hard (and sometimes it’s hard to find a good one in an entire supermarket bin), microwave the fruit for 20 seconds. You should get 2 to 3 tablespoons of juice per fruit.

Inspires names

Lemongrass-  some of this tough Southeast Asian herb’s exotic citrus character comes from citral, an essential oil also found in lemon rind. Very thin strips can be sliced in salads and added to Thai curries and stir-fries; a whole bulb, bruised, adds perfume to soups or stews.

Argument for making product campaign

  • One of the least favourite fruits
  • we don’t consume enough of it
  • we rant using it to its fullest

After collecting the secondary research I produced this info graphic. The image size is A1x 4 and features general facts about the lemon.




After researching and producing the infographic,  I realised that the lemon is very beneficial yet I don’t use it at all in my life. I then began to question from my research and the inforgraphic of how I might be able to improve my life. University has been a struggle for me personally this year and many of my colleagues. I then began to question how the lemon might be able to aid in my struggles with university life. I produced a mind map of how I can use the lemon to benefit my uni struggles.


mind map univrsity

This mind map has critically opened up the opportunity to question wether  other students would be able to benefit from the many uses of the lemon. As well as this, question why students are not using the lemon. Is it due to taste, price or convenience?? To answer these questions I produced a questioner to hand out to students around the library. To formulate the questions I produced another mind map, so that I was then able to gain and condense it into the most profitable and rich source of primary research.


questionarre map

The questions I carefully considered so that they wouldn’t mislead or provoke particular answers that would benefit me personally.  The questions are as follows:

  • Age
  • Male or Female
  • Do you live in student residence or commute?
  • Whist at university do you regularly purchase lemons?
  • If yes, main reason why?
  • If no, main reason why?
  • What are the main ways you may consume lemon?
  • How many uses can you think of for lemons?
  • How many health benefits can you think of for lemons?
  • How beneficial do you think a lemon could be to you university life?
  • What would encourage you to consume lemons?

Below are the questionnaires I handed out to random students in the library.


To make sure I revived all my questioners back , I numbered each one so I was able to stay organised and to lose research data. Overall I handed out 20 questionnaires to gain an insight of students and their value and knowledge of the lemon. I used excel to tally up the numeric data from the questionnaires, as this would make the critical analysis of the data easier.

Screen Shot 2015-04-05 at 19.22.55

I will discuss each question and analyse the results.

Question 1 Age?

1. AGE

The questionnaires being handed out at random, I think I have fairly managed to represent the age ranges of university students. Most student being on the younger scale, less students being over the age of 25.

Question 2 Male or Female?


Again the questionnaires were handed out at random, and receiving a fairly even ratio of males to females make the data reliable.

Question 3 Year of University Study?


At the time this questionnaire was taken, it was Easter Sunday and deadlines were looming. This could explain the reason why there was so many 3rd year students. However, this statistic does come in my favour, as I’m wanting to find wether lemons could benefits student university life. Who better to ask than students with deadlines approaching, who typically want to enjoy the remaining days of their student social lives.

Question 4. Do you commute or live in student residence? 


It is beneficial  hat most of the people that have filled out the survey live in some sort of student residency, as they have more of a responsibility of choosing what pod they consume. Students that work from home will might be influenced from parents or loved ones.

Question 5 Whilst at university do you regularly purchase lemons? 


Question 7 How many different uses of lemons can you think of? 

70% of students said that they don’t purchase lemons, which reflects my initial infographic of the lemon not being one of the most popular fruits. However, I have now discovered that university students are one of the main culprits of lack of consumption of lemons. This already gives me a rational for the project, to promote the use and consumption of such a versatile fruit.


Question 8 How many different uses of lemons can you think of? 

80% of students could only think of 1-5 different uses of lemons. It seems that students only condor the fruit to be something edible, and don’t realise that it could help them with University struggles. Examples could include removes fridge odours, cleans cloth stains and freshens breath.


A staggering 100% of students could only think of 1-5 health benefits of lemons, which from the research we had distinguished 15 broad health benefits. Within those subjects there were more precise health benefits. This suggests that a lack of knowledge of the lemon could be a reason of cause for the lack of purchases by students. Critically my final design will promote a knowledge of the health benefits that may aid a students life at university. Such examples could be purges blood, increases mood and cures hangover symptoms.

Question 9 Lemons can benefit your university life? 


Unreflective of the data already given, no students strongly disagreed and only 30% of students disagree that lemons could benefit their uni life. A reason for this could be the thought process of question 7 and 8, as seeing the tick box options make them feel that there maybe a number of benefits if the highest option is ’30+’. 35% felt that they would strongly agree or agree that lemons would befit their uni life. This made me question why then lemons are not purchased or used by students. At this point, I was hoping my qualitative questions would answer this.

Qualitative questions  

5. Whilst at University do you regularly purchase lemons?

If yes why? 

  • “Lemon drink and flavour food”
  • “I use lemon juice to cook with. There are other fruits that are higher in the same Vitamins and minerals e.g. Kiwi and Berries.”
  • “For lemon water as it supposed to be goof for you”
  • “Cook food and drink traditionally’
  • “For marinade”
  • “Health purposes”
  • “Cleanses you and make you feel refreshed”

If no why? 

  • “Doesn’t typically go on the food I like” 
  • “They make me sneeze”
  • “…”
  • “Dont need them very often for cooking” 
  • “Only fruit+ veg I really buy are apples, bananas or grapes”
  • “I don’t like the taste that much, plus they are more expensive than other fruits”
  • “…”
  • “Dont like them”
  • “Im more of a lime man”
  • “…”
  • “Prefer bananas and apples”
  • “Can’t be bothered to use them”
  • “No reason to”

6. How would you mainly consume lemons? 

  • “Pancakes, fish, salad”
  • “Though the eye/ pancakes”
  • “Lemon drink and flavour food”
  • “In the form of lemon juice”
  • “Sliced in my water”
  • “Squeeze the juice on fish, sliced lemon in water”
  • “Pancakes or baking”
  • “lemonade?, in gifts?”
  • “Lemon juice”
  • “A lemon twice a week” 
  • “Squeeze on prawns salmon or lemon tea”
  • “Prawn cocktails”
  • “Through a straw”
  • “In tea, marinade on meat, fish, in salad”
  • “warm drink”
  • “In prodige ir lemonade”
  • “only really suck them when having shots”
  • “Cut them up, put them in water”
  • “Lemonade”
  • “In baking”

10. What would encourage you to buy lemons?

  • “If fish wasn’t so expensive!”
  • “Alcohol purposes” 
  • “If I could think of more uses for them”
  • “If they were higher in key vitamins and minerals”
  • “Health fads that state lemon water is good for you”
  • “If they were marketed in a more attractive manner and then potential benefits were highlighted”
  • “Knowing the benefits and uses”
  • “Free lemons” 
  • “If they were cheaper”
  • “1) i love traditional food. Some taste is a main taste of mawg dishes 2) for health”
  • “Nothing”
  • “Unsure of answer”
  • “If there was an annual national lemons day”
  • “Yes- for marinade, salads etc”
  • “Health and colds”
  • health related reasons”
  • “If I knew the health benefits”
  • “Health benefits”
  • “If they tasted nicer”
  • “If I knew how to use them”

The main purpose people chose to purchase lemons is for consumption reasons. The uses are very narrow as they mostly include baking, marinade or extra flavour additive. A few people at this point mentioned that they would consume the lemons for health benefits. However, it seems from the quantitative data that these people don’t know why the lemons were good for them, as one person stated “its supposed to be goof for you”. Critically, my final design will inform the reader of the specific health benefits that will help their university lives. One person stated that the “other fruits that are higher in the same Vitamins and minerals e.g. Kiwi and Berries.” This could possibly be true, however this opinion of the lemon could be quite uneducated,  as lemons have a vast number of other benefits of our exterior lives.

One occurrence that recurred during the reasons for not purchases lemons was none answers (…). I initially thought this was a mistake, however this happened multiple times, which made me question wether the respondents couldn’t actually figure out why they don’t buy lemons. As well as this, taste was an apparent reason for not purchasing lemons. Having drunk lemon water before, I know it can be quite refreshing as other respondents in the survey have mentioned. Critically, in my design I will make the lemon appear more appealing to the taste buds. Considering deadlines are near may this when students are most stressed, also leading to the change into the summer months. to make the lemon appear more appealing with taste, I will try and relate it back to the warmer and brighter weather. In addition, bold stamens were made of ‘I can’t be bothered’. Critically, I will try and make the process of using the lemon more convenient, as maybe preparing the lemon might be to time consuming on a students lifestyle.

After asking people what would make the lemon appeal more to them personally, the topic of health benefits cropped up again. Furthermore, appeal of taste and a new addition of appearance was added. Appearance and taste will be key consideration to this project. One person sated that they would purchase the a lemon if it was marketed to be more appealing. This made me question how I could take the lemon from the cardboard box, and move it within a more appealing environment. another key consideration, will where my final peace will be placed as well as hold the lemon. The questions of cost was made apparent. As I have no interest in trying to market the lemon rather promote it, my final design won’t cost the students anything.


Final outcome of box


FullSizeRender (1)

FullSizeRender (4)

FullSizeRender (10)

FullSizeRender (11)

The images above identify the what the product is for, the materials selected, the target audience, where it will be placed, the price and what it will contain.

FullSizeRender (4)

FullSizeRender (5)

After determining the product would be designed similar to a takeaway packaging this lead me to draw out rough templates of nets.

FullSizeRender (4)

Doodling out rough ideas of what I want the packaging to say I decided to choose the words ‘Pick me’ on the packaging as this is related to the idea that the box is based on lemons and hung in a tree, ready for a consumer to ‘pick’.

FullSizeRender (1)


FullSizeRender (1)


Aftre designing out the net and images on the packaging I then began to expieriment with patterns surrounding the images on the package. I created different types of design ideas which focused on the idea of branches and leaves which are associated to design idea of lemons and lemon tree. The branches draw on the net were done in black felt tip in order for the lazer cutter to etch the designs.



 Following this I printed out a prototype of the lemon box using standard A3 printing paper. I believe the design I chose was appealing, however I decided to revert back to a design that I scanned in and simply image traced on illustrator, rather than drawing neat lines with leaves. I felt the hand drawn one felt more natural and looked more attractive. Considering the design outcome, I wanted the lemon to stand out format the packaging, so I wanted to cut out this area so I would be able to put another material backing onto it.

After deciding on the print, I turned the file into an EPS file ready to be cut and etched on the laser cutter.



Material and hand drawn backing testing

IMG_3608 (1)



After getting numerous nets lazer cut and etched I then experimented with the inside of the packaging. I  created different backing ideas including different colours such as incorporating the colour green into the design and experimented with different materials including yellow felt. Overall I decided that I preferred the inside to be plain yellow, however decided that using leather material would enhance the quality, sustainability and attractiveness of the design. On ebay purchased bright yellow faux leather, which would resemble the texture of lemon.

Leather testing



After deciding to use leather for the inside of the packaging I drew around the net in order to make a yellow leather net to fit inside the lemon box.


Here I glued the leather to the box and left excess room around the edges in order to fold the leather neatly inside the packaging. I decided that I needed to make two nets of leather as I desired to have the yellow leather both on the outside and inside of the packaging. Overall, the leather look appealing and looks vibrant. As well as this, the size of lemon is similar to an actual size of the lemon, so when placed in the tree it should stand out.

Lemon Hand bag testing



After making the lemon box net I then decided to experiment with the yellow leather and design lemon style handbags. I cut out a net and then pinned and stitched the bag together. This will not be included within the lemon project as it was only experimental.

Screen Printing 

To apply the white logo onto the design, I had to screen print it using white Ink. It was explained to me that white is a tricky colour to print onto dark materials, however my design being thin hand drawn lines to make up the space made the design appear whiter.



After getting the nets for the lemon box cut and etched the project undertook screen printing to include the phrases ‘Pick me’ and ‘Will Need’.


IMG_3692 (1)

Finished box net/ Folded together


To put the net together I used a screw punch, which is a tool that punch holes through thick materials or large wedges of paper. This is so I could attach a green cord handle to turn it into a bag/ hang the box from the tree.

This was the net of the lemon box and final folded which underwent laser cutting, etching, screen printing and additionally obtains a leather lining.

Lemon book development

Here I then had to design a mini booklet that would info student of how lemons would improve their University life. Using a combination of my initial research and the questionnaire I handed out to students, I was able to devise a narrative and structure for the booklet. I managed this by producing list, mind map and script. (Refer to A2 folder)

FullSizeRender (5)


FullSizeRender (1)

Mind Map


Narrative structure

After compiling the research data, I decided that I would write the book from the Lemons point of view. The questionnaires and responses seem to scrutinise the the lemon, yet people had no knowledge of the beneficial fruit. Using this point of view makes for a more interesting read. I broke down the many benefits into chapters that feature an introduction and different University life situation where the Lemon could help.

  • Who am I
  • Freshers Flu
  • The Kitchen
  • Student Digs
  • Fashion show
  • Night Out
  • Overdraft
  • All nighter

Once I had distinguished the script I was then able to drop the information within an indesign File. The page size is only 100 x 100mm, so I had to keep the information condense and to the point. Throughout dropping the information into the booklet, I had to make changes so that the instruction could fit in within the small document size.

The book

I wanted my book to appear hand drawn and hand written, as elements of the packaging i.e. pattern, borders and titles are all hand drawn. Using a selection of hand drawn typefaces, I created an indesign and layer out the basic template of how I wanted my book to appear. 

Front Cover


Student Quote

How lemons can help


Amongst these categories, lemon benefits were divided 26 benefits were divided into the separate contents labels, that are specifically beneficial for students. Using the script I then drew small illustrations for the book, so that I could visually communicate how the lemon could benefit the readers life.

FullSizeRender (1)


FullSizeRender (1)

As well as this I decided to draw different variations of lemons and also crate some hand drawn borders

FullSizeRender (4)

FullSizeRender (5)


Drawing illustrations I would not consider my forte, however I was very able to draw during my college years. After practicing numerous quick drawings, I began to become much quicker and confident at drawing, to the point where I drew several illustrations in a few minutes. This was due to refreshing my eye and hand co-ordination, as well as naturally work out proportions of objects.

Yellow textures

Using different mark making techniques, I experimented with paints, lemons and different utensils to create interesting marks for the book. I experimented with texture and painted some using soft strokes and others using the wooden end of the paintbrush and pressing lighting into the painted image.



IMG_3397 (1)






FullSizeRender (1)

After compiling all the experimental work I then added this to the booklet pages, and produced my final outcome book.








 I wanted the book to be saddle stitch printed, so I could then sew up the middle of the bind using yellow thread. I sent my work to be printed by a local printers located close to the university.

When I recovered the pages back front the printers, I did not realises that I would have to take into account the creep of the print myself. When reprinting the booklet, I will disguise the creep setting to reprint the book. As, of the purposes of hand in, I will simply score the excess pages of to act as a visual.

Stitching the booklet


Clipped together using bull dog clip and hand sew using a thread and needle.

Final Stitched Booklet



Lemon sachets

My questionnaire suggested that student are too lazy to prepare lemons. This lead to the idea of cutting up lemons into small individual slices and putting them inside small yellow sachets. This creates for and interesting way to present the lemon, as well as reduced the inconvenience of preparation.


I cut up slices of lemon and placed them in small yellow sachets.


Lemons placed within the yellow sachets.

Final products



Product within the placed environment

The product is placed within the tree around university campus. These would be spread around on multiple trees and students can take them as they please.