Behind the Brand: Maker + Merchant

The most effective branding processes are often the most collaborative, and our work with Maker + Merchant is the ultimate example. When Founder Lauren Ernst reached out to us in September 2019 with several items on her wishlist, we quickly scheduled a series of discovery calls and jumped feet first into the creative deep end together.  

Our initial chat was all about getting to know each other—Lauren, her brand, her needs, and how JaneMade could help. After that, we discussed general branding, and Lauren’s desire to explore a new direction that complemented Maker + Merchant’s emphasis on raw ingredients and sustainability. The team also discussed vessels and outer packaging; Lauren needed resources, and we had the necessary relationships. Additionally, our developer Tipling explained the ins and outs of website redesign and development so Lauren could grasp the full scale of work and budget. 

After a few weeks of work in the studio, we hopped on a screen share with Lauren and walked her through a full deck, complete with two very different creative directions. We began by recapping the competitive analysis, current brand issues we were attempting to solve, and future creative growth opportunities. We then demonstrated how the various branding components in each direction could work together. To conclude, we explained the stark variations between the two directions, including photography style, brand marks, and so on.

Each client differs in their feedback process (and we welcome that), but in Lauren’s case, she listened intently during the live presentation and followed up a few days later with a call outlining her thoughts. Lauren very quickly chose direction one. She liked its accessibility, and the colors and typography truly resonated with her personal style. In the end, we had built a brand system that could cycle elements in and out for years to come, all while keeping the core direction intact.  

Maker + Merchant’s new site and packaging will launch in just a few short months. Keep an eye out—we can’t wait for you to see it!

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