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Old Spike Coffee by Commission Studio, United Kingdom

Opinion by Richard Baird

Coffee Branding and Packaging Design – Old Spike Coffee by Commission Studio, United Kingdom

Old Spike is a coffee roastery, subscription service and wholesaler, cafe and social enterprise working with the homeless, located in South East London. It is situated on the site of a former workhouse, a place where the poor would break rocks over metal spikes for food and lodgings, and where the roaster gets its name. With a desire to separate the roastery’s commercial and social activities Commission Studio worked to develop a retail and subscription packaging design that avoided the conventions of the market, and worked together a sense of the artisanal and wholesome and the eye-catching and luxury.

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Omakase Room by Tatsu by Savvy, United States

Opinion by Richard Baird

Visual identity and scented ceramic gift by Savvy for New York restaurant Omakase Room by Tatsu

Omakase Room by Tatsu is a unique sushi dining experience located on New York’s Christopher Street. The concept is rooted in the centuries-old family traditions of Japanese Executive Chef and host Tatsu Sekiguchi and the celebration of the individual and personal. This can be experienced in the restaurant’s unique and intimate setting, one that seats only eight, and a menu carefully crafted by Tatsu for one evening and for that specific group of eight, based on their mood, curiosities and preferences.

The restaurant features a light interior design of soft bamboo and fabric centred around Japanese minimalist traditions. Materials a few but high quality, the ceiling is low, and the design of the table and layout of chairs lend the restaurant a quiet and earthy material quality with little distraction, and establish an intimacy with the chef, and focuses the mind on the food.

Building on this, design studio Savvy developed a multi-sensory brand identity, with a similar restraint, materiality and discretion. This offers something of its own subtle character but does not detract from the food, while also working in small thoughtful details such as scent and semi-transparent paper that links type with interior. The project included menus, stationery, business cards and a ceramic gift.

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Chaos by Socio Design, United Kingdom

Opinion by Richard Baird.

Packaging design featuring Colorplan papers and boards by Socio Design for Luxury lifestyle accessory brand Chaos

Inspired by fashion’s current fascination with customisation, technology and a “sense of light-hearted fun”, creative duo and stylists Charlotte Stockdale and Katie Lyall created Chaos, a new UK luxury lifestyle brand producing limited edition and personalised tech and travel accessories.

Through form and finish, materiality and graphic design, Chaos products, which include phone cases and charms, zips and luggage tags, express the brand’s take on practicality and stylistic desirability, the meeting of technology and fashion, utility and individuality. These are high quality, with a price tag to match (between £76-214), and a favourite with actors Cara Delevingne and Margot Robbie.

London-based studio Socio Design were commissioned by the team at Chaos to develop a packaging design for their collection of deerskin phone cases and luggage tags, gold-plated charms and zips. Using contrasting colour and high quality production detailing, and playing with a tension between the modern and traditional, the digital world and the analogue, these reflect the brand’s playful and “anarchic” approach, and commitment to challenging contemporary luxury standards.

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