News / Graphic Design

Marina Willer pours out new identity for London’s Brew by Numbers

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Marina Willer: Brew by Numbers (images via Pentagram)

Beer, it must be said, is one of the finer things in life. Whether you’re tucking into a thick, rich, filling pint of stout in a log-heated Irish pub or supping on an ice-cold glass of cerveza in an Andalusian square on a cloudless afternoon, the feeling is the same.

From a creative perspective – and honestly, we buy beer from swanky offies for the label just as much as the alcoholic content contained within – the humble can or bottle is a pretty perfect canvas to work on, and we think that Pentagram partner Maria Willer might well agree.

Marina’s latest work has seen her develop a new brand identity for Brew by Numbers, a microbrewery based in Bermondsey, south-east London. The thing that marks “BBno” out from the hyper-crowded craft-beer market is that its name is incredible literal: each of the beers they brew is identifiable by a four-digit number. The first set gives the potential purchaser a handle on the style of beer that sits seductively in front of them, and the second set of numbers denotes the actual recipe.

“Marina Willer and team created a concept that fully embraced BBNo’s cataloguing system, using it to define the brand, making each number the hero,” says Pentagram in a case study published today, 4 February. “The team reshaped the hierarchy and pulled focus to the beer style using large typography.”

In addition to working on the cans, Marina and her team have given Brew by Numbers a refined logo, in order to “maintain consistency across a number of applications and making it more balanced when stacked”. Which is good of them. The identity will also spread to the brewery’s online presence and merchandise.

If simply buying a can of beer designed by a Pentagram partner wasn’t enough of a designer’s dream, Brew by Numbers has also launched two limited-edition beer labels to celebrate Pentagram’s new partners Sascha Lobe and Jon Marshall joining the agency last year.

It’s Nice That asked Marina to tell us about the best beer she’s ever experienced. “My favourite beer moment was in Prague when I had a Plzner with my dad and brother. I don’t drink much beer but I love Plzner and it’s where my dad is from [before] he moved to Brazil,” she recalls. “We had taken him to the Czech Republic to visit the places where he grew up as a celebration of his 75th birthday. On that trip, I got to know my dad so much better and that was the moment I decided to make a feature film about him (Red Trees, which is out now on Netflix).”

Cheers to that!

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Marina Willer: Brew by Numbers (images via Pentagram)

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Marina Willer: Brew by Numbers (images via Pentagram)

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Marina Willer: Brew by Numbers (images via Pentagram)