Faced with rebranding Poppy’s – a modern funeral company that prioritises transparency and choice – Lovers recalls being “daunted and fascinated” in equal measure. Specifically, the creative supergroup had some initial and understandable concerns. “Death and branding don’t often meet,” the studio explains in a case study; Alex Ostrowski, founder and creative director at Lovers, adds: “This is such a sacred topic to help portray.” It was only through a process of shadowing the team at Poppy’s that Lovers arrived at a way to approach the brief. Its response is built on the thoughtful communication and openness central to the way Poppy’s works.
So how do you translate this supportive tone visually? Steering away from the hushed and often un-instructive nature of many funeral brands, Lovers has chosen to incorporate illustrations. Simple graphics are placed alongside guides such as “Demystify the mortuary”. Meanwhile, Lovers describes the identity as typographically “gentle”; colours take their cue from the way “light passes through poppy petals, revealing subtle variances in light and tone”, the case study explains.
Poppy Mardall, founder and director of Poppy’s, explains: “As funeral directors we’re trying to figure out how to gently and thoughtfully represent our work in a way that rings true with grieving people, who are often exhausted […] they often haven’t arranged a funeral before.”
Poppy’s drive for uncomplicated guidance at an informational level is also represented in the work. “Funeral companies have been criticised for a lack of clarity in their pricing structures,” Lovers explains, “so Poppy’s wanted to offer a refreshing level of clarity.” This transparency is carried into guides and FAQ sections, but also in the repeated presence of copy to begin with, subverting the fear that often surrounds funeral organising.
“Poppy and her team choose words very carefully when they’re talking with grieving people. We helped them turn this instinctive way of speaking into a tone for the brand, going on to write some key repeatable lines such as ‘Let’s create a funeral that works for you’,” says Lovers.
With the launch of a new Lovers website, the work with Poppy’s – which stretches back to 2020 – is now available to explore fully in its case study for the first time.
GalleryLovers: Poppy’s (Copyright © Poppy’s, 2022)
Lovers: Poppy’s (Copyright © Poppy’s, 2022)
About the Author
Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. After graduating in Film from The University of Bristol, they worked freelance, writing for independent publications such as Little White Lies, INDIE magazine and design studio Evermade.