15–17 Backfields Lane
Stokes Croft,
Bristol, BS2 8QW

Building Our Brand

Posted by Cat How, December 6, 2017

At the same time as Pollen Place was preparing for launch, another business was forming within its coworking walls. A collaboration between Rog and Cat How (the founders of Pollen Place) and design director Neil Quinn, the Polleni digital branding agency came about through a meeting of minds and a shared yet diverse skill set. Neil had taken a desk at the coworking spaces, and so it was natural our first project was the brand identity and website design of Pollen Place…

The coworking space in Bristol, was undergoing a transformation. Morphing from a smaller coworking venture (called Work Differently), into a series of workspaces plus an event space – Rog and Cat needed a new name and brand which reflected their new direction.

After various brainstorming sessions, pollen emerged as a main concept. We loved the idea of the cross-pollination of ideas, information and work that happen between members of coworking spaces; as well as the transient ‘drifting’ of people in and out. It was also apt that Rog and Cat keep bees – so pollen was already close to their hearts.

We developed a moodboard on Pinterest and took inspiration from mid-century modern art, Wes Anderson, Studio McGill, Charles and Ray Eames, typography, tiles, terrazzo, Anna Kovecses and Richard Caldicott amongst many others. A classic yet chunky typeface, packed with character (in this case Dala Moa) was re-worked to form the logoytpe. We paired it with Europa to pull back on the playfulness of the logo and bring in some solidity. Warmth and playfulness were brought in through a retro-inspired colour palette of grey, teal, mustard and dusty pinks.

Pollen Place moodboard

Copper was brought into the logo through a combination of peach and pink tones in the shape of three accent spots – and was used as a reference to pollen. We wanted this to tie into the interiors of the workspaces themselves – which have copper vinyl wall murals, metallic copper walls in the loos, copper piping and feature lighting in the kitchen as well as a copper-clad bar.

We commissioned Bristol-based illustrator, Naomi Wilkinson, to design a modular illustration which we could break down into separate illustrations to use across the site – images such as cups of coffee, stacked books, a laptop, plant pots and succulents. We also designed three murals that interconnected, and drifted across three outer toilet wall panels in each of the three units. We made sure that each mural had every single brand colour in it, and every single brand graphic ‘pollen’ element too.

We developed a Brand Asset Pack which incorporated the logo, colour palette, typefaces, line thicknesses, social icons, patterns and textures and the website then became an exercise in applying these rules to a certain format.

Pollen Place logo

Pollen Place logo lockups

Pollen Place / Polleni business cards

Pollen Place website

Pollen Place website – mobile view

Pollen Place brand guidelines

Original Pollen Place artwork commissioned from Naomi Wilkinson

Pollen Place website pages

Pollen Place mural designs

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Branding and graphic design, helping businesses grow and evolve

Polleni is a Bristol-based creative agency specialising in branding, graphic design, web design and apps.

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