Fabric by Richards Partners

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In Auckland, New Zealand there’s a property shortage and a building boom happening concurrently. The result is a sudden influx of housing complexes all fighting for the buyer’s attention in what is a very competitive market. This means that along with high end 3D visualisations of the to-be-built properties, developers need to create a strong brand to entice buyers into the new community they’re trying to create and sell. Often the result of this is a brand that pushes with a hard sell however Fabric, a new development in the suburb of Onehunga, has entered the space with a clean and respectful approach that although restrained, stands out ahead of the others.

Fabric is to be built on the site of a disused clothing factory and graphic design studio Richards Partners took this heritage and embedded it into the brands core. Using Basis Grotesque as their hero font, they’ve created a unique typeface that mimics the weave of fabric. Using hyphens to stitch the letters together creates a visual reference when seen large, and even more interestingly, an impression of detailed fabric when used small. The clever technique means that the name of the brand can be seen in multiple ways, creating a restrained texture in what’s a very clean aesthetic. The colours are also on point. Using a beautifully soft cream with a vibrant red balances the brand between feelings of calmness and vibrancy, and links to both history and modernity.

The industrial associations with a fabric mill extend further throughout the brand with publications being sectioned off into lengths with long vertical lines inferring runs of fabric. This sectioning creates a clear space for the various communications needed for a development like this, without it ever feeling bombarded with information. In a similar way, the showroom has been set up on sleek scaffolding, with images and building details hung like draped pieces of fabric. It’s a subtle link, but one that feels decidedly fresh and new.

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