A Bay Area institution since 1966, Peet’s Coffee is a seminal force. The brand influenced an entire generation of coffee entrepreneurs, including Starbucks, and launched the artisanal coffee movement, serving as one of the first gathering places for coffee devotees.
Today, Peet’s empire extends far beyond the Bay with locations around the world. However, coffee is a competitive and crowded industry and after recently celebrating their 50th anniversary, Peet’s wanted their branding to reflect the future, while reinforcing their renowned position in the industry.
For the rebrand, Peet’s gave Character a lot of room to explore. We wanted to look after their devoted consumer base (“Peetniks” as they are lovingly called) and thread that communal warmth throughout the identity—while also looking towards the future. Since we collaborated closely with Peet’s throughout our explorations, we discovered a truth.
They wanted to build upon what was already great. Keeping with the quirkiness of their logo, we refined it to uncover new conceptual qualities that were uniquely Peet’s. We showcased and streamlined the purposeful imperfections of the logo, such as the undulation, so Peet’s could re-stake their unique claim in a coffee market now dominated by minimalist aesthetics.
Peet’s has long featured patterns on their cups to create a connection to the individual coffee’s place of origin, but we wanted to strengthen their meaning as Peet’s continues to source new single origin coffee from around the world.
To do this, we sourced local textiles and traditional fabrics from coffee origin points to design patterns from. To unify these singular patterns, we developed each of them from a custom design grid which, over time, became like a digital patchwork quilt, threading unity through the designs.
“The Peet’s rebrand forced us to look beyond the logo and identify the time, place, and narrative in which this brand originated. It proved to be a very rich story—and the perfect place for us to start.”
Claudia Di Martino / Senior Designer
When people see that dark, rich bag, they know it’s Peet’s. We leaned into that, but the packaging proved so dark that it made overlay patterns a challenge. To solve this, we created a tonal system with a tone subscribed to each roast.
It served two strong purposes, honoring what made Peet’s memorable while implicitly communicating to consumers when viewing the system that the darkest toned bag would contain the darkest roast, while the lightest toned bag would contain the lightest roast.
An ice cold extension that needed to work in a multitude of retail channels, Peet’s Cold Brew had to communicate the identity plus look and feel in a over-saturated market. To do this, we distilled the identity, making it bolder in its aesthetic with a condensed typeface to make an impact and stand out in a crowd.
For the range of flavors, we expanded the color palette to differentiate the individual flavors, making it easy for consumers to quickly recognize and grab their favorites at the store.
“We wanted to create something as bold and memorable as Peet’s, that still had high contrast amongst competitors in the space so when a consumer spotted one, it would easily convert into a purchase.”
Andrew Glendinning / Design Director