How to brand an island: Studio Oker’s identity for Flor & Fjære pulls from its 50-acre gardens
“The name ‘Flor & Fjære’ roughly translates to ‘flora and low tide’,” Marcelo de Costa from Stavanger-based agency Studio Oker tells us, explaining the name that leads their engrossing identity for the Norwegian island destination and restaurant. “Locally, the island is known as the palm tree island,” de Costa continues, “since growing palm trees outside is quite uncommon in the cold fjords of Norway,” hosting the world’s northernmost palm tree garden, a feature Studio Oker built front and centre into the brand.
“With this as a starting point we aimed to capture the essence of the island’s sensuous abundance,” he details, incorporating the 600-guest destination’s iconic landscape elements, including flowers, leaves, palm trees and water drops, into the logomark. “We also wanted the mark to represent the excitement the family has for their garden,” de Costa adds, “and their love for welcoming guests,” capturing as much through the logomark’s energetic forms as well as the subtle extravagance and rigour of their typographic choices. Opting for Grilli Type’s equally sophisticated and hardworking variable sans-to-serif, GT Ultra.
This sans-to-serif variability is emblematic of the surrounding brand’s visual concept; duality – celebrating the contrasts and contradictions of visiting the island, such as the tranquillity of its appearance and the energy of its reality. Flor & Fjære’s binary theme continues into the organic colour palette, taking from the island’s 50-acres of greenery. “The colours were inspired by the gardens,” de Costa explains, creating a system whereby the primary palette’s green hues provide the core structure whilst the secondary tones embody the flower and plant varieties.
“The family loves to experiment with colour combinations and compose beautiful garden beds,” he recalls, discussing the Flor & Fjære’s founders, “and the secondary palette allows this creativity to transfer into the brand material,” integrating effortlessly into the serene typographic application and, notably, the inclusion of Robert Lönnqvist’s illustrations. “While researching illustrators we found the way he illustrates captures the emotions and organic aesthetic we were looking for,” de Costa recalls, hoping to inhabit a playful, experiential voice accessibly. “A bonus was that the noses in his characters are similar to the shape used in the Flor & Fjære logo,” he concludes, “which further reinforces the visual consistency of the identity.”