North Sea Clothing

BRAND DEVELOPMENT

Identity recognized by the 2015 Flux Student Design Competition sponsored by AIGA.

Project Brief

North Sea Clothing began selling original Submariner sweaters issued to the Royal Navy in World War I and II. Once the sweaters became hard to find, they started re-making the sweaters to specification using 100% British Wool. They also sell other products including wind breakers, wallets and shoes.

This rebrand finds inspiration from nautical themes, black and white photography, military insignias, and boat typography. Clean and simple layouts create a sophisticated and contemporary look for North Sea and speak to the history of the products they sell.

Project Brief

North Sea Clothing began selling original Submariner sweaters issued to the Royal Navy in World War I and II. Once the sweaters became hard to find, they started re-making the sweaters to specification using 100% British Wool. They also sell other products including wind breakers, wallets and shoes.
This rebrand finds inspiration from nautical themes, black and white photography, military insignias, and boat typography. Clean and simple layouts create a sophisticated and contemporary look for North Sea and speak to the history of the products they sell.

1. Identity

The logo I chose is inspired by the ranking insignias of the British Navy. It is easily recognizable and honors the history that North Sea shares with its customers. I have chosen two type faces that play off each other with contrast. Averia is a rounded serif font that gives the reader a sense of age and use. Novecento is a wide, modern sans serif font that enforces ideas strength, legitimacy and current trend.

Minion Pro mimics nearly every characteristic of Averia, making it a perfect choice for web use or small text.
North Sea’s color palette is primarily charcoal gray and ivory-white, however other colors have been chosen for use in special cases. A muted color palette speaks to the maturity and history of the products sold.

1. Identity

The logo I chose is inspired by the ranking insignias of the British Navy. It is easily recognizable and honors the history that North Sea shares with its customers. I have chosen two type faces that play off each other with contrast. Averia is a rounded serif font that gives the reader a sense of age and use. Novecento is a wide, modern sans serif font that enforces ideas strength, legitimacy and current trend. Minion Pro mimics nearly every characteristic of Averia, making it a perfect choice for web use or small text.
North Sea’s color palette is primarily charcoal gray and ivory-white, however other colors have been chosen for use in special cases. A muted color palette speaks to the maturity and history of the products sold.

2. Brand Materials

The business cards focus on the imagery that is associated with the brand. Because North Sea is a particularly small operation, each employee could theoretically have their own personalized business card. The logo creates dimension due to objects in the photograph blocking out portions of the logo, making each card unique.

This system utilizes a unique wave pattern as a simple graphic element that remains consistent with the brand voice. In addition to personal business cards, I put together a letterhead and envelope paper system for the company.

2. Brand Materials

The business cards focus on the imagery that is associated with the brand. Because North Sea is a particularly small operation, each employee could theoretically have their own personalized business card. The logo creates dimension due to objects in the photograph blocking out portions of the logo, making each card unique.
In addition to personal business cards, I introduced a letterhead and envelope system to the company.This system utilizes a unique wave pattern as a simple graphic element that remains consistent with the brand voice.

3. Packaging & Extensions

The shipping boxes are designed to be effective and economical. The North Sea logo is placed on imagery of old sea maps, historical maps of London, and blueprints of British World War II ships; the ships that would have been manned by men wearing the wool jackets they emulate.
Clothing tags are important to the experience of purchasing cloths. These tags are intended to give the buyer a deeper understanding of the core values of North Sea, highlighting the main reasons the company chooses to make wool products.

The receipt is reminiscent of 1930’s receipt books, brought into a modern day format. Each receipt would be rolled up and tied with twine, then placed inside a small glass vial with a cork. This “message in a bottle” adds a personal touch to all of their orders, and ensures the buyer that North Sea values all of their customers.

3. Packaging & Extensions

The shipping boxes are designed to be effective and economical. The North Sea logo is placed on imagery of old sea maps, historical maps of London, and blueprints of British World War II ships; the ships that would have been manned by men wearing the wool jackets the company emulate.
Clothing tags are important to the experience of purchasing cloths. These tags are intended to give the buyer a deeper understanding of the core values of North Sea, highlighting the main reasons the company chooses to make wool products.
The receipt is reminiscent of 1930’s receipt books, brought into a modern day format. Each receipt would be rolled up and tied with twine, then placed inside a small glass vial with a cork. This “message in a bottle” adds a personal touch to all of their orders, and ensures the buyer that North Sea values all of their customers.

4. Media

The website is the most crucial element of the branding system, because the majority of North Sea’s sales come from their online store front. The re-branded website is a non-scrolling website, featuring large scale imagery and simple navigation. The website consists mostly of North Sea’s faded black and ivory white color scheme, allowing the clothing to become the colors that stand out most on the page.

The print ad re-enforces the imagery associated with the brand, while it introduces new viewers to the concept and brand language that North Sea would use.
Print ad copy written by Matthew Shoewalter.

4. Media

The website is arguably the most crucial element of the branding system, because the majority of North Sea’s sales come from their online store front. The re-branded website is a non-scrolling website, featuring large scale imagery and simple navigation. The website consists mostly of North Sea’s faded black and ivory white color scheme, allowing the clothing to become the colors that stand out most on the page.
The print ad re-enforces the imagery associated with the brand, while it introduces new viewers to the concept and brand language that North Sea would use.
Print ad copy written by Matthew Shoewalter.

"My father served in the Royal Navy during WWII. His job as a submarine operator was vital to winning the war, taking out enemy U-boats and weapons shipments. He was issued a 100% British wool sweater to wear underneath his uniform. That sweater saved his life on several occasions by keeping him insulated against the harsh conditions of the North Sea. He felt that his sweater was more than just a piece of clothing. To him, it represented his loyalty to the sea.
Years after he returned home from war, my father became very ill. Before he died, he passed his war issue sweater on to me. He told me that this sweater was made for sea-farers and to wear it with the same pride that he felt when defending Great Britain.

At North Sea Clothing, we strive to make our apparel worthy of passing on. Our materials have been proven against the test of time. We use the same 100% hand-woven British wool and natural dying processes to recreate the original World War Era sweaters for modern use. Our mission is to capture the pride of a sailor in every fiber to make our sweaters more than just a piece of clothing. To wear a North Sea sweater is to hold the ocean in the highest regard."
Stay loyal to the sea.

"My father served in the Royal Navy during WWII. His job as a submarine operator was vital to winning the war, taking out enemy U-boats and weapons shipments. He was issued a 100% British wool sweater to wear underneath his uniform. That sweater saved his life on several occasions by keeping him insulated against the harsh conditions of the North Sea. He felt that his sweater was more than just a piece of clothing. To him, it represented his loyalty to the sea.
Years after he returned home from war, my father became very ill. Before he died, he passed his war issue sweater on to me. He told me that this sweater was made for sea-farers and to wear it with the same pride that he felt when defending Great Britain.
At North Sea Clothing, we strive to make our apparel worthy of passing on. Our materials have been proven against the test of time. We use the same 100% hand-woven British wool and natural dying processes to recreate the original World War Era sweaters for modern use. Our mission is to capture the pride of a sailor in every fiber to make our sweaters more than just a piece of clothing. To wear a North Sea sweater is to hold the ocean in the highest regard."
Stay loyal to the sea.