there was plenty of joy in watson-ville the day we shook hands with stillwater brands. these good people went and developed a line of cannabis-infused products then chose us to create the master branding from the ground up — and the package design for three skus. we’re still on a high!
this brand is our cup of tea.
stillwater launched with what has become their signature line of products: low-dose cannabis-infused teas for adults seeking refuge from daily stress. because the tea is for grown ups, it was important our design separated itself from the myriad of loudly-packaged products targeting the stoner demo. so, we created a ’heritage‘ look that conveyed a sense of longevity, trustworthiness, maturity, and the notion that this product has a “higher order” benefit than getting the consumer stoned. packaged like artisanal teas, colors were desaturated to reflect the products’ calming effect, with each sku having its own color relevant to the names we created — and the flavors within.
new logo, new tagline.
we designed the logo to be neither illicit, nor corporate. rather, we gave it a warmth, conveying a sense of the human touch. the upward-bending baseline references the curvature of the earth expansive, open. and lastly, we created a drop of water in the middle of the w to represent the tea. to encapsulate the brand’s ability to manage daily stress, without the effects of smoking, alcohol, or pharmaceuticals, we created the tagline: relax into life.
the ripple effect.
stillwater’s latest product, ripple, is a zero-calorie, dissolvable beverage and baking enhancer. starting with the product and name only, we designed the logo and packaging to again tie to the stillwater master brand, while keeping its own identity distinctive. given the playful name and liberated nature of its portability, we used a brighter color palette and more spirited font treatment. to date, this has been one of the most successful products in the sector.
a modern design that turned back the clock.
stillwater brands’ next product was called ‘clockwork coffee’, a first-to-market cannabis-infused instant coffee. with a visual reference to the brand’s other products, clockwork coffee embraced a mid-century design to reflect the inherent comfort and fun of america’s favorite beverage.
while the packaging's retro-charm appeals to both the younger and older demo via a bright and sassy retro-charm, the tagline speaks to the coffee’s primary benefit: a calmer way to caffeinate: more wakey, less shakey.
in the summer of 2010, the watsons were named agency of record for the artisanal pickling brand, rick’s picks. we first got to know the brand as customers, having discovered them on the shelves of another client, whole foods market. let’s just say, it was love at first bite (had to). but things got really interesting when we met the slightly-idiosyncratic, ever-charming founder of the brand, rick field. a man with a vision who needed an agency with a plan.
a new label design for the brine.
when rick and co. asked us to refresh the brand under one well-designed roof, that’s exactly what we did. with a new label design that brought to market a restrained, retro-modern take that showcased the vibrant authenticity of the brand. by highlighting their beloved icons alongside their health benefits, we were able to give a vibrantly refreshed look to each and every pickled delight.
each label reflects the unique personality and flavor profile of of its pickled product. we also added fun factoids to the ingredients, like pairing phat beets with goat cheese and crackers, brining your brisket with smokra, or, a favorite, using the hotties brine to make one bloody good bloody mary. customers now know that what’s inside a rick’s picks jar is good to the last drop.
dressing the pickles for mass market.
rick created a brand new line of pickles for mass market distribution — and we dressed them up with a new design. the line, called the pickle essentials, is a trio of rick’s most popular cucumber pickle chips (garlic dill, sweet, and spicy). as always, we wanted these new labels to remain uniquely rick, while holding their ground against pickle heavy weights like vlasic, claussin, and mt. olive.
inverting the white-to-color ratio was the departure point. from there, the design established rick as king among pickle makers via ribbon and banner-style iconography and graphics, alongside the clean and classic typography that his brand was already known for. long live the pickler.
a refreshing website refresh.
we watsons also had the opportunity to give rick’s website a face (and voice) lift. using the same suite of iconography that we created for the labels, we designed a simple, user-lovable site that makes it easy — and fun — to purchase piquant pickles with prodigious pucker power.
an ad campaign that puts brine on the brain.
we established a brand voice as playful as the products—and the founder himself. and we developed a suite of collateral, print, and digital advertising that reminded audiences of the simple pleasures that come from fresh ingredients transformed into something unforgettable.
we also took over the brand’s social extensions, building affinities through shareable art, recipes, fun facts, and tips. we re-designed the brand’s booth for the fancy food show (among others), designed a branded skin for their delivery vehicle, helped make rick’s merch even more purchase-worthy, and designed reusable bags that served as an homage to local produce and the fine state of new york.
a cravey new snacking pickles brand.
people love pickles. people love healthy snacks. and people are positively passionate about rick’s picks snacking pickles, for which we developed the package design—and all of the ensuing branding. at the heart of it all is a happy little pickle-snacker named, kirby. illustrated in-house, kirby is a fun, mod ‘brined’ ambassador who’s loved by demos boomer to z. and kirby looks swell on swag, like t-shirts, stickers, beer koozies, and baseball hats. our branding work also included the tagline—‘crispy. savory. cravey.’—as well as collateral, a landing page, and social assets.
cabot creamery makes premium-quality, locally produced, incredibly delicious cheese. amen. when cabot asked us to raise their profile in the new york market, we cried a little (happy tears) then dug into the challenge.
smile and say, cabot.
while the cabot brand is well known in new england, where they have a number of family farms, awareness is not as high in new york state, despite their having farms there too. our job? a higher profile for greater new york marketshare.
kicking things off with research, we discovered that while most people buy one cheese for cooking, another for snacking, and yet a third for entertaining, cabot showed the greatest versatility, coming out on top in all three categories. in our minds, that made them, “the best cheese on the block”.
a thanksgiving do-over.
with thanksgiving just around the bend, we created an event sponsored by cabot that gave new yorkers the opportunity to win their version of the perfect holiday celebration. named “friendsgiving”, the winner could celebrate with ten people of their choosing — after the obligatory family gathering was over.
we drove new yorkers to cabot‘s new york facebook page, where they could enter to win a fully catered dinner for ten in their homes. with an online media campaign running across nymag.com, grubstreet.com, chowhound.com, time out new york, new york magazine, and more, full-page takeovers in time out new york and grub street highlighted both the contest and the brand’s local farms. the campaign also included wild posterings, shareable art, and facebook ads.
in just ten weeks, we added nearly 4,500 nyc/tri-state area fans to cabot creamery’s nyc facebook page.
a taste of success at hearst publishing
we also promoted the holiday event to hundreds of hearst corporation employees — in the comfort of their own cafeteria. cabot chef jimmy kennedy came down and cooked up some amazing cheese dishes, with free cheese samples to boot. cabot was a hit and all who attended, including o magazine’s gayle king, went back to work feeling like a big cheese.
hint water approached us about developing a campaign for their naturally flavored waters and new product, hint fizz. always thirsty for a challenge, we created a national digital, social, and point of purchase campaign. and let’s just say, it was a pleasure helping them blow the other drinks out of the fizzy, tasty water.
pop goes the water.
after working with hint water to help promote a healthy alternative to calorically laden sodas and juices, the watsons designed display cases for stores across the country. what followed was an in-your-face point of purchase campaign that was hung on bodega doors around the city.
the brand voice was bold and youthful, having fun with some favorite colloquialisms of the day. visually, the bottle was the hero, popped in a field of bright colors and adorned with a halo effect. the look was poppy, youthful, and bold with colors that reflected the natural fruits inside them.