The Brief: Indigenous Before
When we first began our work with fair trade and organic fashion line Indigenous, they already had distribution through small specialty boutiques across the US. To get to the next level, they knew they had to up the sophistication level of their brand while still staying true to their socially conscious roots.
When initially surveying their brand, we determined that the look was inconsistent with various photography styles, color palettes, and font usage throughout the marketing materials. Although they had a great story behind their line, the organic/fair trade message was getting lost and overall lacked visual and verbal personality.
Strategy: Brand Platform
Our first step to rebranding Indigenous was to analyze competitive messaging, industry trends, and brand look and feel in order to find areas of opportunity within the marketplace and a unique ownable niche. We also looked at branding best practices in parallel industries in order to provide a benchmark for future branding efforts, and studied female market segment behaviors in order to make target market recommendations. With our findings, we were able to create unique positioning directions that would help Indigenous stand out in the crowded marketplace.
Strategy: Brand Positioning Boards
We presented two unique positioning approaches, with the first focusing on the idea of self-expression and sophistication, and the second emphasizing the worldly appeal of their artisan-made clothing. Each direction was supported by a unique brand story, personality words, and overall look and feel.
Identity: Logo Exploration
Indigenous knew they needed to update their logo, but were unsure about how far they were comfortable pushing the envelope. To address this concern, our exploration ranged from evolutionary solutions that utilized concepts developed in the existing mark, to revolutionary marks with new expressive approaches to the Indigenous logo. Themes of travel, textiles, and global references were also explored to communicate the story behind the line.
Identity: Final Logo
Our final solution for the new Indigenous identity was a proprietary word mark that balanced sophistication and tradition. The signature mark was modernized and refined, and centered over the “I” for a more ownable look. Earthy yet modern colors were used to balance the concepts of fashion and artisan equally.
Identity : Stationery System
To communicate the idea of premium fashion made by artisans, a clean, modern, and tactile approach was taken. Crisp white uncoated paper stock was embossed with a custom weave pattern; the typography was executed artfully to feel simple and organized and to mimic the quadrants in the logo mark.
Identity: Supplemental Marks
To help tell the rich story of the Indigenous brand, a series of supplemental graphic icons were developed for use as supporting brand elements. A seal was created to communicate the authenticity of the brand and product; easy-to-understand icons allowed us to call out certain features of the clothing production. Handwriting was introduced to bring a hand-made touch and reference the artisans behind each product.
Identity: Clothing Tag Exploration
In our research, we found that socially conscious women would connect to an authentic brand that they could trust and respect. For Indigenous, the clothing and hang tags were critical as they would be the first interaction with the brand for most of their customers. A range of unique solutions was explored that included keepsakes, layered messaging, and unique materials to tell the Indigenous story.
Identity: Hang Tag Exploration
For the hang tags, our biggest consideration was to tell a big story in a small space. To get around this challenge, we explored clever layering combinations that also created unique shapes to catch the customer’s eye at retail. Bold messaging, artisan photography, stitching, and other embellishments were explored to bring depth to the Indigenous story.
Identity: Hang Tag
The final hang tag design was a clean, sophisticated, layered design that mirrored the quality of the line and tactility of the clothing. Bold brand messaging, a garment numbering system, and a qr code linking to a bio of the artisans that created the piece brought the Indigenous story to life at retail.
For our first shoot for Indigenous, an earthy yet modern look was chosen to transition the brand to the new sophisticated direction. Clean beauty lighting and natural model poses created a fresh and modern aesthetic; a unique textured backdrop added a slightly rustic feel.
For the hero photography, outdoor locations were used to tie into Indigenous’ earthy roots and communicate comfortable weather for the spring and summer line. A thorough targeted casting session allowed us to select the best talent to embody the Indigenous woman.We selected the soon-to-be Miss USA Alyssa Campanella to represent the line. Authentic, natural poses and clean lighting made the Indigenous photography feel more approachable than the posed high fashion shots typically used by competitors.
Once the initial brand work was implemented, we were able to move Indigenous towards an even more sophisticated direction. For the fall and winter line, a gradated grey background was chosen for a cleaner look. Expressions and poses were still friendly and approachable, but an additional element of movement was added to bring more energy to the shots.
For the fall and winter hero shots, we took the idea of expressive movement even further with more exaggerated poses and painterly lighting. The effect was an energetic, fun campaign that featured the versatility of the clothes and connected to the hectic lifestyle of the everyday female consumer.
The expressive movement theme was continued for the Spring/Summer 2013 campaign. Casual yet exaggerated movements featured the texture and mobility of the clothes.
Printed Collateral: Fashion Catalog
In the catalog, all the new brand elements were brought together to tell the Indigenous brand story and feature key products. A graphic film strip format allowed us to organize artisan photography; bold clothing detail shots and casual catalog photos rounded out the content. A blind embossed vellum cover with stitching brought a tactile quality to the piece.
Advertising: Print Ads
The trade ads had to communicate multiple facets of the Indigenous brand to potential buyers, from technical aspects such as clothing production to the big picture of the brand. Our solution layered expressive model photography with strips of clothing details and artisan shots. Graphic insets called out key product benefits; a clever headline and informative copy organized the messaging into a digestible format.
Digital Media: Website
For Indigenous, the website and blog were one of the most important marketing platforms for relaunching the brand and one of the biggest areas of opportunity in our competitive research findings. To make an impact the new brand, the bold, energetic, yet accessible fashion photography was king. The Indigenous social message and nuance in the brand was supported with clothing details, artisan photography, and textures and patterns for depth.
Space: Retail Environments
Indigenous needed a retail space design to accommodate the various merchandising scenarios for the full range of their retail partners. Our solution was a modular system with branded wall vinyls, mounted photo graphics, and unique clothing separators that told the brand story. All elements were designed with sustainability in mind, a key requirement for this eco-chic line.