Garrett Elizabeth Office aims to magnify the things it loves through creative work
Comprised of married couple Elizabeth Dilk and Garret Morin, the New York-based studio produces playful and sophisticated brand identities.
- Ruby Boddington
- 18 March 2020
- Reading Time
- 3 minute read
Based in New York, on the edge of Chinatown are husband and wife and creative duo Elizabeth Dilk and Garret Morin. Midway through 2019, the pair came together (outside of their marriage) officially to form Garrett Elizabeth Office, a studio with an aim to “magnify the things we love and believe in personally through creative work.” The duo’s approach is hands-on and highly collaborative, no matter what kind of project its working on, but the output is often an identity for a brand.
The pair first collaborated creatively while working at separate companies – Garret at Harry’s and Elizabeth at Partners and Spade (now Mythology) – when Harry’s enlisted the agency to help out on the branding of a new launch. “The kick off was literally each of our first meetings back at work after our wedding,’ Garret recalls. “It was pretty wild but that process was a joy.” Roughly a year later, the pair decided to leave their respective jobs as they found “the work we enjoyed the most was coming to us directly, as opposed to going through agencies etc. and so we decided to share the work between us,” Garrett adds. And from there, it just continued to snowball.
When it comes to the projects that they enjoy the most, Elizabeth tells us: “We want to love the founders, the product or service, and the meaning behind it,” with Garrett adding “we identify projects first by the people involved, then look at the organisation or business.” This means that the studio’s output is always genuinely enthused, producing results which are thoroughly realised with a matching enthusiasm from consumers.
Visually, however, there’s variation in the projects that Garrett Elizabeth Office has produced. Both Garrett and Elizabeth’s previous experiences and influences combine with what they are currently looking at and thinking about. For example, Garrett really enjoys working with colour and so that comes through in several projects. “We always want our projects to be of, and influenced by, the moment but to age well,” he adds. This has seen the pair brand a new studio space in New York, a new kitchen ware company and a clothing brand.
In terms of a project that they’re particularly excited about, Elizabeth tells us its the release of their very own orange wine. “We have a side project with friends: our own wine brand, Vichingo,” she explains. “It’s so fun because it’s really outside of our world, but we get to step into a totally different industry and do our thing.” Essentially, they play the roles of both creative and client. For the latest release, an orange wine made in coastal Tuscany, Garrett and Elizabeth have created the brand, packing and content around it.
“We’re trying to create a wine brand with our friends who are wine experts, and we will shift the branding a bit visually based on what we’re making,” she explains. “A sparkling will look totally different, a rose might be a different take, but they’ll all still feel like Vichingo.” This “feel” is approachable and playful while not undermining the expertise that has gone into making the wine.
Another recent project saw the pair branding Outer Reach, a new brand and studio space in New York City. It’s a project which embodies the studio’s ethos of people-first, products later and started with a great relationship with the founders. The branding, like with Vinchingo feels playful but sophisticated, nodding to some very contemporary elements of design but with a solid foundation.
While it’s early days for Garrett Elizabeth Office, the duo’s portfolio is already chockablock with proficient brand identities, already teasing for more to come. Though quitting their jobs was a daunting decision, going at it alone has proved to be a good decision. “The reason the studio started was because Garrett and I love working together and really trust each other’s instincts,” Elizabeth concludes on why she thinks the partnership works so well. “It’s great to have a design partner who has some overlap stylistically but not too much. We’re both good at a lot of the same things, but we also each have creative and strategic strengths the other doesn’t have, which makes for a much more well rounded design practice.”
GalleryGarrett Elizabeth Office
Garrett Elizabeth Office: Caraway
About the Author
Ruby joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in September 2017 after graduating from the Graphic Communication Design course at Central Saint Martins. In April 2018, she became a staff writer and in August 2019, she was made associate editor. Get in contact with Ruby about ideas you may have for long-form stories on the site.