A beloved co-op gets a fresh start

Weaver Street Market and New Kind share the journey of creating a new identity for a thriving marketplace

Background

Weaver Street Market is a community-owned grocery store headquartered just around the corner from New Kind in friendly Carrboro, North Carolina. Weaver Street serves as both a trusted source of fresh, high-quality food and a welcoming place where neighbors can come together.

Weaver Street approached New Kind on the eve of their 30th birthday with an opportunity to help celebrate the occasion with a refreshed brand story and redesigned visual identity.

Industries: Retail + Consumer

Services: Identity System, Positioning, Research, Storytelling, Web Design

Research

Representing past, present, and possibility

 

In addition to being its 30th birthday, 2018 also marked the year Weaver Street would open its first store outside of Orange County. We knew the story and identity had to resonate with both long-time Weaver devotees and Raleigh newcomers alike. A foot in the past. A foot in the future.

We began the research phase with a deep dive into the current Weaver Street brand—reviewing existing marketing materials, conducting competitive analyses, and collecting insights from internal and community surveys.  

We then shared the results of our research in an in-person workshop with the Weaver Street team. We worked together to start to build out the brand framework based on the research. Building brands from the inside out through an open, collaborative approach is a fundamental part of how we do what we do.

Storytelling

Gathering around the market

 

Markets have always served as not only a source of food, but also as a source of community building—where people come together to share food, ideas, art, stories, and more. You knew where your food came from. You trusted the person who sold it to you. You knew them by name. 

This, we realized, is what separates Weaver Street from traditional grocery stores. You can buy your asparagus and seltzer water anywhere. Only at Weaver Street—with its co-operative business model, its open community spaces, its fresh, prepared-in-house foods, its commitment to supporting local producers—will you always get something more. It’s about the goods they sell and the good they do.

When you shop at Weaver, you’ll always walk away with more than the contents of your grocery bag.

This insight inspired the notion of “we sustain healthy communities together.” This was the cornerstone idea around which we told the updated Weaver Street Market brand story: representing both the organization they’ve become and celebrating the best of who they’ve been since day one.

The complete story and supporting messaging was collected in the final brand guidelines for the Weaver Street team to reference and create with going forward.

Design

Nourishing a sustaining identity

 

When the storytelling phase gives way to the visual identity phase, it’s not just a quick baton hand-off. Instead, our story and design teams run one last lap together before design takes the baton.

This step is crucial. Time and again we see the best brands align story and design, and Weaver was no exception.

The design team created a visual organizing principle—an internal dynamic concept based on the story that informs all design decisions—of “nourish.” The spirit of nourishment brings to mind ideas and imagery centered around healthy, sustainable growth—for food, for ourselves—which is core to the Weaver Street story and identity.

Making a mark

 

We designed the Weaver Street mark to be flexible across many mediums, at a range of sizes, and for many use cases.

The logo family needed to boldly communicate their story online, in print, and in person.

The full logo and the shorthand “thumbprint” are visual representations of key themes from the Weaver Street Market story: community, inclusivity, and nourishment.

A seed, a system

 

Further exploring the ideas and emotions nestled within “nourish,” our collective imagination found its way to the seed.

A symbol of life, energy, possibility, and growth, the seed represents not only the trusted, locally-sourced food Weaver Street sells, but also the way Weaver Street nurtures community.

The seed allows the new identity to exist as a flexible system, inspiring branded materials across a range of touch points. It serves as the source material for in-store wall graphics, t-shirt designs, promotional materials, product packaging—or anything else the Weaver Street team might need.

Outcomes

Bringing the brand to life

 

With their new Raleigh store opening in Fall 2018, Weaver Street looked to New Kind to help implement the refreshed story and visual identity.

A redesigned website, packaging materials, t-shirt designs on the visual side—ownership brochure messaging and blog posts on the content side.

We created brand and messaging guidelines to help the Weaver Street team continue to implement their new identity as they grow. The new look and updated story will of course feature prominently in the new Raleigh location, but expect every store to get a facelift soon.

Why New Kind?

In New Kind we found the perfect partner for our brand redesign project. From start to finish the entire process was open and collaborative, strategic and creative. The end result was an updated story and visual identity that truly captures the spirit of Weaver Street. This new brand positions us for future growth while remaining true to what we’ve always been. We can’t wait to share it with the world.

Ruffin Slater

Co-founder, General Manager

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