Huckleberry Roasters by Mast, United States21 April,2016
Opinion by Richard Baird.
Huckleberry is a Colorado based coffee roaster established in 2011 by Koan Goedman and Mark Mann. Huckleberry recently worked with local graphic design studio Mast to rework their packaging in a way that would make the most of some well-established assets (which included Mackey Saturday’s distinctive wordmark) and would add more of the personality of its founder’s. This was achieved through the introduction of bright spot colour, geometric pattern alongside hand drawn wordmark, playful copywriting, and a naming convention based on Goedman and Mann’s personal musical inspirations.
The primary intention for Huckleberry’s redesign was to address a confusing labelling system, and convey a little of the company’s personality, one that is both serious in its responsibilities to sustainability and good quality coffee, but also did not take itself too seriously. This is addressed in the move to a biodegradable material, clearer structure, and a more restrained but impactful use of colour and pattern.
Contrast is used to good effect, dividing and highlighting key information and securing visual impact. These include the detail of pattern alongside unprinted space, hand drawn wordmark alongside the more reductive qualities of a sans-serif, bright spot colours framed by white, and straightforward insight into flavour profile and origin yet a playful naming strategy. These are brought together with a good sense of proportion and structure, an appreciation for aesthetic flourish and the need for character in image and words, as well a communicative clarity.
Mast draw a little more proprietary character from a hexagonal motif from previous brand communications in the form of a pattern. Although this does add texture, contrast and a continuity, where previously there was abundance, diversity and ultimately distraction, it feels in competition with a really well-drawn wordmark. The wordmark may well have been better served by a solid colour or a dialled down background, which is where the previous packaging worked well. However, there remains a distinction and clear intention behind each choice, dividing each product, brand personality and straightforward product information, but also unifying these under a cohesive and memorable visual language. More from Mast on BP&O.
What do you think of Mast’s packaging work for Huckleberry Roasters? Share your thoughts in the comment section below or get the conversation started on Twitter.
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