017 branding on neon signage in gastown vancouver
Client
017 Shop
Services
Brand Strategy, Visual Identity,
e-Commerce Website
Industry
Retail
Year
2016 - 2019
Standing apart in the crowded contemporary landscape of fashion is not a simple feat. In defining the branding and identity, new entrants must be deft, precise, and confident. 

017—an emerging high-end clothing boutique—approached us to craft an identity that was equal parts futuristic, accessible, and eminently sophisticated. 

We were tasked with building a brand differentiated enough to reflect their vision as singular in the crowded luxury retail climate. 
017 store design by Gair Williamson Architects

1.1 Interior of 017's Downtown, Vancouver location designed by Gair Williamson Architects

From the outset, 017 planned for their online storefront to act as an integral component of their revenue, in addition to playing a leading role in developing their reputation internationally. They sought to create a highly considered e-commerce experience that mimicked how they conceived the ideal in-store experience: modern, minimal, and streamlined. 

Reaching 017’s core demographic—younger luxury consumers who primarily interact with information on their cell phones—we understood that creating an identity that translated to mobile and online mediums was critical. 

017 Campaign Imagery Helmut Lang

1.2 Campaign photography by 017 for seasonal collection

When we began working with 017 in 2015, we were working with a blank slate. All that existed when Practice Practice was brought on board was a set core principles and a guiding philosophy, well-defined commercial objectives, a lease to a high-traffic area in Vancouver’s historic Gastown, and myriad contacts with established and emerging high-fashion designers.

Practice Practice was responsible for branding, e-commerce website design and development, and digital and social media marketing strategy. 

017’s dedication to an innovative, progressive aesthetic and emphasis on diversity in representation dictated our approach to constructing the branding and identity.

017 branding of letterhead and business card

1.3 Letterhead and business card design

The boutique celebrated the avant-garde, emerging, and experimental in fashion, but sought to remain nimble and versatile enough to appeal to a broad audience. 

We collaborated with 017’s art director, writer, and founders for the duration of this project. 

Before embarking on this project, we had a two-day discovery workshop to unearth what principles would animate 017’s branding approach to a highly competitive retail environment. The information unearthed in this synergistic process and countless ensuing conversations informed each major deliverable and the foundation of 017’s identity.  

017 store photo helmut lang clothing

1.4 In-store display of Helmut Lang clothing & Arena Homme+, Dust Magazine, 032c, & System Magazine

017 branding on hanger
1.5 White matte printed logo on wooden hanger
1.6 In-store photo of glass enclosure and neon signage
017 inside store

If 017 was to have substantial and immediate impact culturally and commercially, the first step would be creating a logo that could effectively communicate their distinct vision. 

This logo would have to timeless, modern, and memorable—across a variety of mediums. As such, we deliberately avoided using an overly intricate design, electing to locate and accentuate the elegance that lies in unvarnished simplicity. 

017 branding logo

1.7 Black background with white logo

Our final design for the logo utilized a redesigned Helvetica typography. We went for a pared down and straightforward aesthetic, which we determined would not need to be modernized five or ten years in the future. 

017 packaging with branding

1.8 Shopping bag design. The Instagram handle is displayed on one side and website on the other.

017’s logo was simple enough to act as both a primary logo and monogram. It retained its cache equally online, on mobile, and in print, signage, campaigns, and store collateral.

Regardless of logo size, format, or presentation, no details were lost. 

In designing 017’s online platform, we sought to create a simple, intuitive and responsive site that took cues from 017’s branding and planned interiors and seamless shopping experience. 

However, after 017’s initial launch, we discovered that over 60% of visitors were visiting the site on mobile. Consequently, we chose to reiterate 017’s home page, designing a mobile first website and then transferring this design over to desktop. 

We continued to monitor and respond to 017’s stated KPIs for their website, routinely optimizing and revising the design and user experience. Additionally, we created a simplified backend and CMS to ensure that website was highly usable internally without the assistance of a developer. 

The final iteration of the web design was decidedly minimal. 

Web design of 017 e-commerce site using shopify platform
Web design of 017 e-commerce site using shopify platform
Web design of 017 e-commerce site using shopify platform
Web design of 017 e-commerce site using shopify platform
Web design of 017 e-commerce site using shopify platform
Web design of 017 e-commerce site using shopify platform

We elected to let focus on the quality of the designers and their garments, emphasizing large, clean product photographs accompanied by brief descriptive text. 

An uncluttered, clean web design naturally loaded faster and was rapidly responsive across all browsers and screen sizes. 

017 e-commerce photography017 e-commerce photography
2.1 E-commerce images
017 e-commerce photography
017 e-commerce photography

By adding a blog section to 017, we created a means for the store’s staff, creative director, and other contributors to organically contribute to the boutique’s emerging brand story. 

We imbued the website with a modular function whereby blog posts or new arrivals—or some combination of both—could be featured on the website’s landing page.

2.2 Campaign images featured on blog

Integral to 017’s initial growth was a successful social media strategy. Due to the fact that 017 did not possess any customer data, we created several tests using interest targeting and email list targeting to obtain pertinent data that could inform 017’s web strategy. 

This research altered us to centralizing our digital marketing efforts to Instagram, dictating that this highly visual platform would generate more consistent profitability and drive an outsized number of engagements. 

017 branding of neon signage in gastown vancouver

2.4 Neon signage in Gastown, Vancouver

Our final deliverable to 017 was a cohesive identity and branding package that allowed them to create systematized marketing materials and provide a cohesive branding experience for consumers across all touch points. 

017 garnered an overwhelming positive reaction to their website and quickly acquired a loyal customer base. 

017 site featured on hypebeast

2.5 HYPEBEAST article post about 017's campaign

digital ads of 017 by practice practice
digital ads of 017 by practice practice
digital ads of 017 by practice practice
2.6 Instagram sponsored posts

As customers started sharing 017 content and products with each other organically, the store solidified a unique position within contemporary cultural conversation, simultaneously achieving its commercial objectives. 

Our Instagram-centric social media strategy achieved a 5.1 return on ad spend over years, and 92% of new users discovered 017 through Instagram’s platform.  

The store is now regularly featured on Hypebeast and Highsnobiety, and retains a devoted following locally and internationally. 

Project Photography:
Eric Tsui

Editorial Photography:
Kai De Torres, Nico De Torres, Connor Cunningham, Taby Cheng, Eric Tsui

Styling:
Yeiji Choi, Eli Goirn

Copy:
Aaron Gray

Published:
02.10.20

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