When Beth Fitzgerald of Blush Imagery approached us to design the brand identity for her new venture, The Maine Wedding Company, a wedding vendor directory and planning resource, it was clear that for her venture to succeed, it needed a brand with the sophistication, class, and broad appeal to compete on a national level.
The MWC brand needed to connect with wedding industry vendors who would pay for membership in the online directory, but to make that membership worthwhile for vendors, it needed to first attract real couples from both Maine and away. The look needed to be decidedly upscale, but to also feel approachable and genuine.
Before beginning design, we presented Beth with custom moodboards showing a broad collection of colors, type styles, patterns and textures so that we could hone in on the ones that would be most appropriate for her target audience. It was easy for her to see that the slightly more casual, but still elegant, look (right) would fit best. Our brand needed to be timeless—not trendy—and able to grow with the company, and it needed to embody the authenticity and casual charm that prompts so many couples to plan their weddings here.
The logomark was designed by Neil Patel of Greyletter. He based the type on the font Spira, with a custom MWCo. monogram. The result feels classic: traditional but not old-fashioned. The navy (PMS 546) and silver gray (5507) colors were chosen to convey elegance and sophistication, while teal (5483) and leaf green (7495) accents bring a touch of youth, prettiness and fun. We chose to use the Avenir font family for headlines and copy as a more contemporary complement to the Spira-based logotype.
When it came time to design the site, the challenge was to carry forth the brand's sophistication within the confines of a modular, flexible and cost-effective site. What would initially be a small amount of content needed to be repurposed in a variety of creative ways in order to maximize search placement and advertising exposure. On a limited timeline and budget, site production time needed to be minimized, but we didn't want the design to feel formulaic or templated.
The result is a system of interrelated styles for navigation, headers, sidebars, and features. With internal ads, Google ads, images, stories, flex boxes, blog feeds and vendor profiles, there's a lot of "stuff" on every page, but it feels organized and digestible. Pattern and color themes and custom headers differentiate blog content, articles, gallery content and vendor listings. A design-heavy header and subtle shading and texture on global elements imply luxury, customization and attention to detail, while content areas remain flexible and easy to update as they are styled through CSS alone. At all times during the design, attention was paid to ease of styling and creative reuse of elements, as well as to consistency and the end-user experience.
Because the site is the first embodiment of the MWC brand, we were free to experiment with and shape the brand standards as we worked. Throughout it all, Beth gave us lots of leeway to make decisions. One day after I'd sent mock ups of the gallery pages, she rushed into my office and asked "When did we get purple?!" I was stammering through a reply about information hierarchies and visually separating content types, when she stopped me with, "I love it! I was just wondering." We do love a trusting client!
It was a lot of fun to work on a project that balanced time and budget constraints with creative and technical challenges, an energetic and open-minded client and a great creative team, to construct a solid brand and a technically advanced product that will now sustain itself and grow organically. We're looking forward to seeing MWC succeed!