Here at Topeca we are very excited to share with you our updated brand design. I feel like it’s been a long time in the making. For the past 2 years or so I’ve been feeling a little distant from our current branding. While it did a great job at establishing us in Tulsa as a small, family-owned coffee company, with roots in El Salvador, I felt like it didn’t really reflect the company that we have become. So, after much deliberation and heads banging against walls, and eyes staring into computer screens, we finally arrived to where we are now…with an elegant sleek new logo and brand design.
We partnered with Ghost design team out of OKC, who did a bang up job with the scattered ideas and short time frame we gave them. It was really important to us that the new design didn’t stray too far away from our old one. We wanted to keep it familiar, yet simplified and more modern. Ghost really captured that look well. The new main logo is a slimmer younger version of the old logo, yet portrays a real sense of sophistication. The main icon is clean and simple, and ties together several elements of our company: coffee seeds, coffee blossom, cup of coffee – the whole “Seed-to-Cup” thing abstractly represented.
Speaking of “Seed-to-Cup” we wanted to stray away from that as being a main focus of our brand imagery. While our “Seed-to-Cup” program remains a major part of our company and mission, we all agreed we have grown beyond it, and felt we didn’t really need to be wholly defined by it. We are working the “Seed-to-Cup” branding into more of an in-house certification program for the coffee we grow on our family farms. We also replaced the “Cafe de el Salvador” monicker to with “Coffee Roasters.” Again so we could allow our image to grow beyond just the Seed-to-Cup brand.
Ghost also created a couple of secondary logos that can used in many ways. Both of these work great as stamps and on print material. Working in “Tul USA” was also a great detail, as it reinforces our local roots, and distances us from Topeka, Kansas (a common misconception).
Moving the crest from the front of the bag was a difficult decision, as many people have come to identify us with the family crest with the conquistador. But the key flaw of the crest on the bag was that it didn’t scale well, and sort of distorted the aspect ratio of the rest of the logo. The task of fitting the crest into the new design was difficult, as it didn’t really mesh well stylistically, so we imposed upon Ghost to rethink the crest for us. Again, we wanted to keep it familiar feeling, but also new, clean and simple. I think they did a great job with turning a very detailed classic style icon into a sophisticated and understated badge. What works well about this new crest is that it is very scale-able, and can be easily registered at most any size. This image will be used on the side panel of our new bag. We will likely keep the old crest around as a throwback image on certain products and apparel, so don’t say goodbye to it just yet.
Much of the effort was spent on the new bag design, which should be hitting the shelves late August. We are all very anxious around the roastery to get them in. And for now we are keeping it a secret, so I’m sorry but you will just have to wait.
We are going to implementing the brand in stages over the rest of the year. First step was getting the new website launched. And we’ll be adding some more functions to that as time goes on. Then we’ll be slowly working the new logos onto production and marketing materials. Then the bags. Then finally finish by updating our cafes. A big part of the redesign was to create a solid consistency across the brand, from roastery to cafe to the website.
We hope you enjoy the new look, and we would love to hear you comments. We thank you for supporting Topeca over the years and helping us grow to where we are today.
FROM OUR FAMILY TO YOURS. UNA VIDA DE CAFE
-Written by Ian Picco