How exactly do you go about rebranding an area, especially one bookended by Mayfair and Soho in central London, which has been largely forgotten about by Londoners? When The Crown Estate turned to dn&co. for assistance in giving St James’s a bit of a makeover, the agency decided to consider every element of the region’s luxury status, from its street presence, through windows, hoardings and building wraps, to a new quarterly newspaper and website. Safe to say, it was no small task.
Starting from the bottom up, London-based dn&co. worked closely with type and symbolism to craft a brand motif for the area – the pelican. “Introduced to St James’s at the exact time of its foundation 350 years ago, pelicans are also a treasured symbol of protection and guardianship,” the agency explains. This pelican can be found across printed collateral, creating a quiet but consistent injection of character and personality into the otherwise overlooked area.
dn&co. also turned its attention to The Correspondent, St James’s first and only newspaper since the Gazette, which originals under its star contributor Oscar Wilde. “Now in its ninth issue and published quarterly, the newspaper includes interviews, features, reviews, recipes, calendar entries, original writing and fashion stories,” the agency says. “Words are accompanied by bespoke illustrations and photography, entirely produced and art directed by dn&co. The paper is available from concierge desks, quality retailers, and friendly folk at Piccadilly Circus, Bond Street and Green Park stations every March, June, September and December, and editorial content is also reflected on the St James’s website.”
The paper serves to champion local independent traders, restaurants and galleries, thereby reinforcing the sense of the mercantile village that once was. All together, the result is a cohesive and considered visual identity, which is immediately recognisable and yet refrains from screaming out at passers-by.