“If Moonrise Kingdom had a sandwich shop”; People People rebrands Seattle eatery

For sandwich shop Layers, the branding studio emulates the look of a lakeside summer camp without falling into the trap of themed visuals.

23 November 2023

A fun branding concept has come out of a union between two Seattle companies. Layers, a sandwich truck, has opened a permanent space to sell its wares, calling on local brand strategy and interactive studio, People People, for its visual identity. Amidst a slew of Seattle restaurants emulating a serious “farm-to-table” aesthetic, People People delivers a brand that looks lifted from a film.

“We joked with the client, ‘If Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom featured a lakeside sandwich shop, what would it look like?’” We’ve seen through channels like TikTok how compelling the allure of actually living in a Wes Anderson film is. And just like the fake brand Mendl’s developed for The Grand Budapest Hotel featured traditional elements to draw audiences into its specific world, so too does Layers.

The project comprised all the typical deliverables – menus, merch and signage, but also custom wallpaper. “We tried to invoke that free feeling of summer. Think lakeside summer camp, picnics, row boats, diving boards and classic striped beach towels,” says creative director Shannon Palmer.

GalleryPeople People: Layers (Copyright © People People, 2023)

According to Shannon, it is a growing trend for products and brands to have a suite of logos that shift depending on application and audience, rather than just one (variable and multiple wordmarks is a tactic we’re seeing more of too). So while the illustrations and striping patterns remain consistent, two logos have been developed. The first is a highly legible sans-serif, Highway Gothic, used for signage and the menu. And the script, as People People puts it, has a “pool-side” feel and is for totes, T-shirts and the website.

The illustrations are in-house (senior designer, Maddy Porter). These required some chewing over as People People wanted to link back to summer camp shirts from childhood, without them feeling too themed or denoting a specific era. “To achieve this, we designed each illustration to feature both monoline elements as well as pattern and shadowing to give them that warm, mid-century hand-drawn feel.”

GalleryPeople People: Layers (Copyright © People People, 2023)

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People People: Layers (Copyright © People People, 2023)

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About the Author

Liz Gorny

Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. In January 2023, they became associate editor, predominantly working on partnership projects and contributing long-form pieces to It’s Nice That. Contact them about potential partnerships or story leads.

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