Danny Harms, partner at Studio DNVR
Karna and Ross Murphy, owners of Downtown Bakery & Creamery
Downtown Bakery & Creamery opened its doors in Healdsburg, California on the village square in 1987 and built a following with locals—and beyond with visitors to the region's wine industry—that generated great brand equity in their over thirty-year run.
In 2021, married partners Karna and Ross Murphy—who both grew up in Healdsburg—bought the bakery from its original owners after they retired, to carry on the bakery's tradition of supplying the local families and workers with fresh, affordable, and delicious food.
An early testament to this commitment to the people of their town was when they kept the original staff employed through this change in ownership during the COVID-19 pandemic. Karna and Ross hired Studio DNVR to help them design a new brand identity for their newly purchased business.
The bakery's first owner hand painted the original logo, which imbued an artisan quality that carried through in their food. The bakery sources local ingredients (from within a 15 mile radius when possible), rotates a seasonal menu, and makes everything from scratch.
The new owners recognized the need for a new brand identity design to work in the modern digital landscape and beyone, but wanted to also retain the brand equity built by the previous logos' over thirty years of community presence and excellent service.
To begin, the clients completed my brand questionnaire and I met to discuss their answers. This helped me discover their target market, what makes their company unique, and where they want to take the company in the future.
I researched other brands in their market and created a competitive analysis. From these insights, I determined a strategy and creative direction.
After determining a strategy and conducting a competitive brand analysis, I assembled curated visual moodboards from inspirational examples in use by other brands in a wide spectrum of different styles.
I met with the client and discussed their thoughts about the moodboards, which helped me quickly determine their preferences, surface insights, and identify the essence of their ideal brand.
The history of Downtown Bakery & Creamery and its location right on the town square provided lots of inspiration to explore for the new brand design.
I start my design process by quickly brainstorming, sketching, and exploring lots of ideas.
Then I refine the strongest sketch concepts into vector artwork. refined our concepts and reviewed our strongest options with the client.
At first we explored themes that could move the brand away from the original logo direction into something new, such as playing off the downtown square itself (middle row).
However, because of its strong brand equity built over 30 years in the community, we all agreed that keeping some of the original's visual themes was ultimately the best path forward and provide great continuity.
My logo design and collaborative creative process undertaken alongside my client helped guide me to the final approved primary logo design.
I expanded the primary logo design to include alternate logo variations that are optimized for a variety of placement constrictions (such as embossing or embroidery).
This flexible logo system offers a robust toolkit to help those who work with the Downtown Bakery & Creamery brand.
To complete our logo and brand identity package, I designed the brand’s visual elements, such as the color palette, brand typefaces, usage guides (safe margins, sizing guide, incorrect usage), and image file explanations.
I created a set of brand guidelines to help Downtown Bakery & Creamery communicate a professional and consistent brand identity.