Taking A Wingate Apothecary Candle Home Is An Entire Experience

by Alianne Valladares-Prieto on 03/05/2021 | 4 Minute Read

Top Hat worked with Wingate Apothecary to ensure that their brand identity would be as inspiring and significant as the woman behind the name. Their mission was to intricately and masterfully craft a packaging and labeling design that would not only stand out for its beauty, but for its distinctive personal touch. Working around the amber glass and the holes within the labels that would make the firelight palpable from every side, Top Hat went above and beyond to make the candles and home products special to all who purchase.


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Ryan Cowles’ mother was a natural homemaker, an expert in hospitality, and (as Ryan puts it) “whiskey in a teacup.” After losing her to a hard-fought battle with cancer, Ryan decided to honor her memory by channeling the vast amount of knowledge she bestowed on him to create an artisanal brand of his own, adorned with her maiden name. Her story lit the fire within us to create a brand that could proudly carry the torch. Elegant and decorative, yet full of contemporary visual cues, we equipped Wingate Apothecary with a statement brand designed to stand the test of time.

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The responsibility of creating a meaningful brand was more salient than ever. Of course, we set out to create an ownable mark for a budding company, but this identity also needed to give proper recognition to its precious namesake. We created a custom logotype that is welcoming, yet strong; timeless, yet unique—qualities that shone through as we listened to Ryan speak of his mother.

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Wingate’s custom logomark embodies three foundational concepts: the large chalice to represent their respect for and devotion to the history of apothecary care, the outer leaves to indicate a commitment to all-natural ingredients, and the central, hidden flame to symbolize the homemade candles at the core of their business.

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Distinctive labels for Wingate’s flagship product, their custom candles, were our first order of business following the establishment of the primary brand. We created an unmistakable look in a budget-friendly system by marrying intricate linework, tightly-structured text lockups, and a bit of attitude, with three brand colors that can be used to distinguish scents or to allow customers to further personalize their creations. Hand-written fields for flavors, ingredients, and burn time helped to keep the printing costs down while emphasizing the personal quality of the product.

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We took full advantage of the amber glass, the candle’s flickering light, and the burning wax by keeping key brand elements and fine linework clear. On a brand new candle, these elements show through as dark, rich amber, but as the candle burns, they take on a whole new life, as the artwork becomes illuminated from within. The labels appear alive as a subtle, beautiful flickering light fills in the intricate details until the flame’s last breath.

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Just as Ryan’s mother loved to share her expertise with the world, Wingate is intent upon removing the smoke and mirrors around their home products by giving customers the tools they need to enjoy their products to the fullest. Accompanying each purchase, the informative Candle Care Card couldn’t be an afterthought. Instead, we designed it to be a beautiful reference that customers would be proud to have in their homes alongside their fragrant flame.

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  • Designed By: Top Hat
  • Instagram: @builtbytophat
  • Creative Director: Aaron Easler
  • Senior Designer: Nico Guidicessi
  • Senior Designer: Johnny Quaranto
  • Photographer: Brian Kaldorf

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