creating a brand


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Working with Pernod Ricard’s Breakthrough Innovation Group (BIG), Notable was commissioned to develop the brand world and launch plan for a new drink, aimed at the modern woman.

Ui (pronounced ‘oo-ee’) is made from simple, natural ingredients—rice, water and flower yeast—and is designed to offer an alternative to the sugar-filled, frivolous options predominantly available to women from the drinks sector. Our goal was to demonstrate Ui’s unique characteristics by creating a brand that also felt unlike any other in the sector.

The name Ui is derived from a very rare Japanese word ‘u’i’ which evokes the moment a flower comes into bloom. It is a state that lasts only for a few moments. With its floral inspired ingredients, Ui is also at its most exquisite in a fleeting moment: when its two component parts—the accord and essence—are blended together. This moment is called the Éclosion.


With this in mind, our aim was to create a brand idea, identity and experience that reflected the idea of ephemerality and savouring the ‘now’. This is how we landed on the Foundational Idea of “Live a Life in Full Bloom”; a concept that captures the inspiration behind the product itself but also embodies our target audience’s outlook on life.

For the brand identity, our intention was to create a logo that had an inherent sense of movement, reflecting the seasonality and fluidity of nature. Its visual starting point is a series of six graphic strands that echo’s Ui’s six seasonal variants, which then flourish into the fully resolved Ui logo.

In the same way that nature embodies a sense of both force and fragility, the rest of the Ui visual identity has been designed to have dramatically contrasting elements—bolder graphic devices that add pace and volume versus subtler ‘quiet strength’ moments.


Furthermore, certain elements of the brand have been created in collaboration with like-minded women. For example, the wrapper for the brand book consists of a scarf designed by the print designer Lisa King, who also uses flowers as the inspiration for much of her work.

When it came to the launch plan for Ui, there was a deliberate decision to introduce the brand via a soft launch approach. We created a launch concept—‘Women of Note’—that centred on speaking to and bringing together interesting, inspirational women by hosting a series of small events and tastings. These have enabled Ui to build and engage with a community, laying the foundations for a larger-scale launch and retail presence in the near future.


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