Jean-Paul Gaultier Diet Coke

While more accustomed to designing high-end collaborations like champagne packaging for Piper-Heidsieck, Jean Paul Gaultier is going for more mass market appeal by becoming the latest designer to collaborate with Diet Coke.

The French creator has been named the beverage’s European creative director and is appearing in a series of short films for the brand.

As well as signing on to design bottles and cans, Gaultier will also have input on online content and retail concepts for 2012.

Plus, he’s the star of three short films for Diet Coke’s YouTube channel, portraying a therapist, a journalist and a private detective solving a puppet’s wardrobe dilemmas.

His first limited-edition designs will be unveiled across Europe starting next month.

“The brand asked me to explore its fun personality and to style the bottle. I want to show people the codes and signatures I love. The bottles have the shape of a woman’s body, so it was great fun to ‘dress’ them,” the French creator said.

“The Diet Coke motif is so beautiful I had to design around this. The finishing touch was to apply my logo to the bottle, like applying a fragile stamp — making it something special you want to touch.”

Gaultier follows in the footsteps of leading designers including Karl Lagerfeld, Roberto Cavalli and Nathalie Rykiel by teaming up with the soft drinks brand, while over in the US Diane von Furstenberg last month unveiled a limited-edition collection of bottles adorned with her signature prints in red and black.