Tag Archives: Illustration

JKR redesigns Magnolia Bakery

First set up on Bleeker Street in New York’s West Village in 1996, Magnolia Bakery played a significant role in the boom in popularity for cupcakes in the 90s, which has endured pretty much ever since.

After experiencing a pop culture moment when Carrie and Miranda were shown chatting about their love lives over cupcakes from the store in season three of Sex in the City, the brand has expanded to other sites across the city, and the world, and now plans further growth as well as giving greater focus to its direct-to-consumer business.

To mark these developments, JKR has created a new brand identity, which draws on Magnolia Bakery’s original, somewhat whimsical styling though refines it for more coherence, especially in digital.

“The new logo is inspired by the bakeshop’s trademarked cupcake swirl – which takes up to 40 hours to perfect! – and the live theatre of the bakery; mixers spinning vanilla cake batter, cupcakes being iced and banana pudding being scooped.” says JB Hartford, group creative director at JKR.

The updated core brand colour is inspired by the iconic green of the bakery’s walls, while other colours are drawn from its desserts and colourful sprinkles. 

The brand’s West Village roots are still firmly evident in illustrations, though the wider system allows the brand to grow across different channels, particularly digital. Magnolia Bakery will roll out the new design elements over the coming months, beginning with its digital platforms, followed up by packaging and store refreshes. The brand will also continue to add new products to the D2C channel in the coming months.

Custom-drawn wordmark

Ryan Bugden, a co-founder of R&M, led the type and graphic design for the project, creating the Strawberry Western wordmark in Latin and Katakana. There’s three optical sizes, ensuring it works when used in display environments, as well as in small details – for example, leather debossing.

Strawberry Western is a new fashion label that describes itself as “anti-waste”. It was set up by New Yorker Kisa Sky Shiga, and focuses on handmade and one-of-a-kind pieces created using unwanted clothes and post-consumer waste and scraps. The brand appears to be in the early stages, with garments for sale in some stores in New York, but the Strawberry Western website is yet to launch.

“Japanese identity design has a formidable history in rationalised geometry,” explains the designer. “I took inspiration from many classic Japanese wordmarks and twisted the logic to fit the Strawberry Western vibe.”

r-and-m.co

Sproutl’s new branding is bursting with life

Sproutl sells plants and gardening accessories, as well as offering jargon-busting advice to anyone that’s less than an expert in the field of plant care. The marketplace was set up in 2020 by former Farfetch execs Anni Noel-Johnson and Andy Done, and has already received millions in seed funding (insert gardening joke here).

Omse’s branding revolves around the idea of “growth as the glue behind the identity”, says studio founder James Kape. They’ve designed a very charming seedling symbol – which works particularly well when animated – as well as a set of ‘overgrown’ versions of the Sproutl sans serif logo.



“With the illustrations, we wanted to get a bit of a spectrum to show the different styles and ways that [gardening] can get a bit messy,” says Kape. “It can grow in all sorts of ways.

“We came up with a very graphic system for how Sproutl could communicate in different ways … it was important to have a strong idea in the core elements – how do our growth animations work? How can the idea of growth start to manifest itself through page loads? How can it happen through something as simple as the loading symbol so your sprout grows into something you’re about to look at?”

Omse has plenty more ways for how the ‘sprout’ symbol could come to life, with images of it used in packaging, in digital environments, and even as the cut-out for a seed card showing how versatile it could potentially become.

omse.co

Coca Cola real magic

Described as the ‘hug’ logo, the new wraparound appearance of the identity was inspired by its positioning on packaging including cans and bottles. The new campaign was created by Wieden + Kennedy London with KnownUnknown, a global network of independent talent, brought in by Coke to craft the visual look, including all photography, animations and illustrations.

It is part of a wider launch by Coca-Cola of a new tagline, Real Magic, the first change for the brand in five years since the arrival of its Taste the Feeling tag in 2016. While it links to the brand’s most famous line, It’s the Real Thing, the new copy also aims to highlight the need to connect in troubled times.


This is perhaps a lot to ask from a soft drink, but the simple but striking new posters, combined with the bold use of upbeat illustration and photography makes the work stand out.

Alongside the print campaign there is also a TV spot, created by BETC London and directed by Daniel Wolfe, which stars three well-known gamers: DJ Alan Walker, Team Liquid’s Aerial Powers and Average Jonas.

Cult’s palate cleansing new identity

Designed by London-based studio Output, Cult’s new identity system nods to the wine sector with clever details, like the letterforms in the new wordmark. The curve of the C reflects the bowl of a wine glass, while the base and stem are contained within the negative space of the letter. The way that curves and cutaways have been applied in the wordmark is carried through subtly to the primary typeface, which has noticeable angular ink traps.

Illustration is central to the new visual language developed for Cult, putting a fresh and fun spin on wine investment, and wine more generally, where traditional luxury tropes might ordinarily be expected.

The team at Output acknowledge that the category is “marred by misconceptions” and that “it can feel complicated and intimidating – even a bit old school”, so they set out to help Cult “revolutionise the category and excite audiences through a new brand proposition, and an inspiring visual and verbal identity”.

Lego and Yinka Ilori reimagine the humble launderette

Known for using vibrant colours and bold patterns, Ilori’s work injects joy into everyday spaces and tells stories that nod to his British-Nigerian heritage. The installation draws on the artist’s childhood memories of visiting the local launderette on Essex Road, north London, with his family, with help from a group of current students from his former school, St Jude & St Paul’s C of E Primary School.

On a visit to a local launderette, Yinka asked the young students how they would rebuild the space for the better and bring people in the community together. Their playful ideas shaped the transformation of elements typically found in a launderette from the banal to the fantastical.

The installation features a number of interactive experiences, including a giant mural wall that can be built, unbuilt and rebuilt by visitors, kaleidoscope laundry drums and vending machines that dispense Lego toys instead of soap. All of these experiences aim to demonstrate how children use play and creative problem-solving skills to turn everyday experiences into adventures.

The Art of Coffee

Coffee brand Maquina Coffee Roasters celebrates daring and whimsical coffee. The branding people created the brand’s visual identity and encapsulated the brand’s vision through design, dazzling shades, and wonderful textures. The packaging honors the product and what it took to develop it in a way that’s less of a cliche and more of a statement. 

Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph

Macy’s

Macy’s is synonymous with the Holidays as an average of 50 million people tune in to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. In addition to the parade, Macy’s delivers a series of Holiday programs across the country to celebrate the season. We worked with Macy’s to develop a promotional campaign with strong illustrations and custom typography that conveys the magic of the season.

“We believe that illustration can be a powerful tool for communicating strong ideas, connectingemotionally with users, and creating an experience that feels truly unique. Our collaboration with Carpenter Collective has proven to do just that.”— Gregory Dibisceglie, Macy’s Senior Creative Manager

From me to you Merry Christmas

Find out more https://carpentercollective.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/CarpenterCollective_MacysHoliday2016_09-877×1024.jpg

Starbucks Christmas cups

“For the start of our campaign, we typically come up with a mood board that centers every piece of the creative for the full season, and so this year, we came up with the centering point around gifting and the elements that surround it, as well as elements that are really celebratory,” said Suzie Reecer, associate creative director at Starbucks.

Throughout each of the four holiday cup designs, these factors of wrapping and celebration can be seen visually throughout the entire campaign. From commercial to coffee bags to—obviously—the holiday cups, every aspect gets centered around celebration and the celebration of gifting. 

Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph

For example, the first design found inspiration in a perfectly wrapped gift, featuring a circular pattern in holiday hues. The next cup features delicate ribbons encircling the cup, creating a joyful dancing movement, and it’s a design near and dear to Suzie. “It really makes me think of when I wrapped presents with my mom, and you finish all the wrapping, and you look down, and there are ribbons all over the place in the most beautiful way,” Suzie added. 

The other designs are more typographically based yet still tie into the gift-giving motifs through ribbons, stripes, sparkles, and, of course, the classical holiday hues. 

And while each of these cups is innovative and refreshing from the past cups, there’s a new design element that, quite literally, wraps up the entire design. “We do have a major change and shift in our design system this year, in the best way, which is bringing forward a gift tag on each of our cups,” Suzie said. Baristas will now have a dedicated spot to write customers’ names or even a note so that each drink sincerely feels like a specially gifted treat. 

Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph

Elegantly Playful Wine Label

Jocelyn Tsaih is a Taiwan-born, Shanghai-raised artist currently based in Oakland, California, and, recently, the artist collaborated with Dom Maria, the Brazilian Sparkling wine brand. Tsaih’s designs are essentially blank canvases, allowing consumers to create a custom wine label that suits all the occasions they could need. Plus, even if you choose not to decorate the bottles further, the illustrations are lively, playful, and innocent enough to leave plain.