Marx Design’s no-fuss identity for Tipple Topper finds inspiration in vintage army ration packaging
During the height of the COVID-19 lockdowns around the world, many of us longed for the experience of drinking and socialising together in a bar. With that in mind, and sensing an opportunity to elevate the home-bar experience, Australian drinks company Strangelove have created Tipple Topper; an all-natural dehydrated garnish for beverages. Designed to elevate the experience of drinking at home, the garnishes promise bold taste, and feature lively combinations such as chilli and lime, spiced pineapple wedges and smoked pear slices.
To bring the brand to life, Strangelove invited long term collaborator and Auckland-based creative agency Marx Design to create an eye-catching visual identity reflective of the garnishes’ impactful flavour. With a striking combination of type and colour, alongside no-nonsense imagery, the resulting visual language is designed to stand out on the shelf while providing clear communication to those unfamiliar with the product category.
Introducing an overarching strategy of ‘borrow from the past, modernise for the future,’ Marx Design looked to utilitarian emergency army food rations for inspiration. Describing their type choices, Creative Director Ryan Marx explains that the SAA Series was perfect for the brand, with its functional qualities aligning with the concept. “We were inspired by vintage army ration packaging which commonly used robust ‘fit for purpose’ condensed typography,” he tells us. Marx Design’s research also revealed that SAA Series is used on road signage throughout Australia. “We loved this because without knowing, the audience has a subliminal relationship with the typeface,” Marx adds.
The brand’s photography takes the utilitarian feeling a step further, displaying the garnishes simply on a solid-colour background, leaving little room for misinterpretation. This no-fuss industrial approach to art direction, Marx explains, is intentionally direct. “As Tipple Topper is a unique and new product to the market, the photographic approach was to tell the consumer exactly what the product is,” he concludes.
SAA Series by URW Type Foundry