Merchants is a long-established fish and chip shop born in Bewdley, along side the River Severn. The local community hold the restaurant in high regard. For those from further afield, eating Merchants’ chips in Bewdley by the river has often become a tradition.
Merchants were planning to open a third shop in Halesowen after the success of their second shop in Stourbridge. Consequently, we were tasked with updating their entire restaurant branding to coincide with the opening of their new shop.
After our initial discovery meeting, the goals were clear. Firstly, We needed to develop a cohesive brand that pays homage to Merchants’ Bewdley roots. Secondly, customers needed to be able to make the connection between the flagship restaurant in Bewdley and the shops in nearby towns. The new branding had to show that Merchants was bringing the same, high quality, widely acclaimed fish and chips to other localities.
Approaching Merchants’ restaurant branding
Once we had conducted research and presented stylescapes, we turned our attention to the logo. We took inspiration from two key points of research: fish and chips were popularised in the Victorian era; Bewdley bridge is one of the towns most memorable landmarks.
Victorian hand-painted signage inspired the typography. In addition, we incorporated the silhouette of Bewdley bridge to create a memorable logo with a traditional aesthetic. Furthermore, we produced alternative variations of the logo with varying levels of embellishment. As a result, the restaurant now has a logo system that is both flexible and cohesive.
Developing the brand identity
To celebrate Bewdley and everything that encompasses Merchants, we developed a host of brand elements to reinforce the memorability of the restaurant’s identity.
First, we established an illustration style and utilised it in the brand pattern. Moreover, we used the illustrations in conjunction with the typographic style we developed for the restaurant branding.
We even produced an illustrated map of Bewdley. The map’s style suited the traditional aesthetic that emerged throughout the branding process. And of course, the Merchants building sat at the heart of the entire illustration.
Branded social media templates
Merchants use social media as part of their marketing strategy and to communicate with customers online. Therefore, we created an array of social media templates to reflect the new brand across their social media channels. As a result, the restaurant’s social media output has been visually unified.