01. case study
Rebranding and growth development for San Francisco retailer Cary Lane. Lead the openings of 3 brick & mortar locations, distribution center, and office. Full design project with logos, signage, packaging, web, marketing materials, etc.
Role: Creative Director, Head of Design
Owner Cary LaScala
Operations Manager Hayley Silva
Marketing Manager Hayley Tubener
Designer Kathryn Cardenas
Intern Alex Ledezma
Intern Akouto Vongabe
Cary Lane is a unique clothing business in San Francisco that offers deals on designer apparel at up to 80% off the regular retail price for men and women. They specialize in brand new unworn samples, overstock, and past season apparel from brands from all over the world. There are currently 3 brick and mortar locations, separate corporate offices, and a distribution warehouse. There were over 28 employees working for the company since I left the end of 2017.
Through methods such as observation, data analysis of department related sku sell through, and post purchase surveys/ questionnaires we came to find our customer base to be extremely varied in general with some commonalities based on store location. Hayes for instance had an older customer who typically spent more per transaction, whereas at our Valencia location, sale items and jewelry were top sellers. We utilized this data for branding, buying, floor design, item distribution and many aspects of running the business.
One of my first projects was to redesign the existing Cary Lane logo. The owner wanted to go for a classic look that appealed to men and women of all ages- nothing too contemporary or trendy that could still be associated with the original logo. There were two slogans the owner wanted to go by, so did a few iterations with the different copy.
Created a style guide and employee handbook as tools for the staff to reference in regards to the Cary Lane brand. It had examples not only of visual guidelines such as colors, fonts, and ways to use the logo, but also strategies on marketing, sales, customer service, etc. and details on our products and target market.
Chose to go off the monochromatic palette with Cary Lane’s packaging. Translated the logo to both small and large shopping bags with black decorative paper. Went with a linen cardstock for the business cards for a more tactile appeal. Was also responsible for the sourcing and reordering of all branded materials.
Planned and contracted the making of all awnings, a-frame signage, in-store framed signage, hanging signs, and portable canvas signs. Based on the individual store’s needs and layouts, had to design the signage to fit the spaces and wall hangings. Made templates for designers to create interchangeable sale signs for both indoor and outdoors.
Built the website for Cary Lane utilizing the site Squarespace, photographed all the pictures used on the site, and outlined the copy all on my own. Optimized it for viewing on mobile devices as well. In 2013, the site included an e-commerce section dedicated to select items which has since been taken down.
Lead the design and template creation for all email marketing materials. Our email newsletters were sent to over 10k customers bi-monthly. Used the website YMLP to code via html, design, and send out all the newsletters. If there were special sales or events, on occasion we would hold photoshoots to use as imagery for the backgrounds of the materials.
SOCIAL MEDIA GUIDES.
Wrote up multiple social media guides for the employees to reference in understanding how to maintain and create content for Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, and Pinterest. In the guides were visual rules, photo editing, brand guidelines, instructions on when to post, how to hashtag, use of feed planners, and schedulers such as Later.
When I started at the company in 2012, there was only one location, so for every new location we opened up I had to create a floor plan for the offices, racks, displays, cash wrap, dressing rooms, backstock rooms, break rooms, different departments (shoes, jewelry, accessories, bags ), and section for our private label line. I used the website Roomsketcher to create mockups.
There would be merchandising guides needed for every season for the merchandising team to use for creating displays, dressing mannequins, and doing store windows. This would have photo references of trends for the season for all of the departments. I would work on this with the Merchandising Manager. Planograms were also seasonly drawn for the staff to know how to stock the shelved items- mostly the home goods and accessory sections.