Casual Business’ branding for Bowl Grabber upholds its vision of a relaxed wine culture
Don’t care about wine etiquette or if you’re holding your glass incorrectly? Neither does Bowl Grabber. In fact, its new branding champions doing it the wrong way.
- Daniel Milroy Maher
- 11 October 2021
The term “bowl grabber” refers to the act of holding your wine from the bowl and not the stem – a classic faux-pas in “polite wine society” as it changes the temperature of the wine. But how many of us really know what the correct temperature is for serving wine? Most of us just want to enjoy the experience of drinking it, not spend hours discussing the correct etiquette.
This idea has become the ethos for new London-based wine brand Bowl Grabber, which, as the name would suggest, is tapping into the large market of carefree wine drinkers who aren’t bothered by how they hold a glass. The brand’s unique offerings – wine in boxes and cans, as well as in traditional bottles – speaks to this mindset, championing the idea that wine can and should be enjoyed in as many different settings as possible, from the dinner table to the park.
For the team at Bowl Grabber, their vision of a relaxed wine culture needed some visuals that were suitably breezy. So they sought out a design studio with an equally laidback approach that could give the brand the look it needed. They found a perfect match in Casual Business, a studio whose down-to-earth method of working with clients is captured in its name. The feeling was mutual for Jon Calleja and Katerina Karamallaki, the founders of Casual Business, who knew from the start that this was an ideal brief. “After speaking with Nick Palmer and Master of Wine Barry Dick [of Bowl Grabber] we understood their passion for appealing to a different, more casual type of customer, one who doesn't care about proper wine etiquette but can also appreciate good wine,” says Jon. “We knew this project was right up our street and we jumped in straight away.”
To give Bowl Grabber a unique edge in “a category that is so defined by rules”, Jon and Kat realised that they needed to “add a little attitude”. One of their main ideas for the branding was a custom logo inspired by classic wine packaging and its extensive use of serif fonts. They hand-drew the wordmark logo in order to add a quirky and imperfect look that suited Bowl Grabber’s deviation from the norm. “It was important for us to create a stand-out product that challenged the market and the notion of what premium wine packaging should look like,” explains Jon. “Bowl Grabber Bold matches the intensity of the brand’s personality and is the perfect medium to amplify the rest of the brand elements. It gave us an extremely versatile typographic voice that we can use to communicate the brand’s message, whether online, outdoors or in print.”
In terms of the colour scheme for the different types of packaging, this was dictated by its perceived use case. For example, the bright yellow of the box and cans corresponds with the idea that these formats would be most likely used at a park picnic or in some other public setting where a strong aesthetic is important, whilst the white label of the bottle, slightly more subtle in appearance, is more suited to a low-key dinner party. “Having all three formats to play with meant we could be bolder and more expressive in some cases and a little more reserved in others,” says Jon. “We were conscious about keeping a balance between the bottle, can and box and making them appear as part of the same range, whilst also having their own character.”
And each format does literally have its own character. The design of the bottle and can is foregrounded by a dancing anthropomorphic figure, whilst the extra space of the box is utilised with both the dancing figure and another seated one alongside, playing a guitar and providing music for the scene. To create these bold and fun characters, Jon and Kat enlisted the help of Lithuanian illustrator Egle Zvirblyte, whose attention-grabbing style was a perfect fit for their needs. “Bowl Grabber had shortlisted illustrators they liked and Egle was their favourite,” says Jon. “For their first wine, a Portuguese Alvarinho, she created a main character, inspired by the symbolism of the rooster in Portugal, dancing and of course bowl-grabbing his wine glass. A cat is playing Fado music on a cobbled street nearby.” He goes on: “She really brought a sense of light-hearted humour to the illustrations and the feeling of enjoying good wine in good company, without taking yourself too seriously.”
Moving forward, Casual Business will also be branding Bowl Grabber’s forthcoming red and rosé range, which will feature a cast of new characters by Egle. The rosé can currently be viewed on the Bowl Grabber website, boasting a fresh pink design that both stands out and ties in well with the Alvarinho.
Casual Business: Bowl Grabber (Copyright © Casual Business, 2021, Photography, Sean Mallia)
About the Author
Daniel joined It’s Nice That as an editorial assistant in February 2019 and continues to work with us on a freelance basis. He graduated from Kingston University with a degree in Journalism in 2015. He is also co-founder and editor of SWIM, an annual art and photography publication.