Disciplines: Art direction Brand concept Brand strategy Graphic design Identity design Packaging design
Client: Alken-Maes
Disciplines: Art direction Brand concept Brand strategy Graphic design Identity design Packaging design
Client: Alken-Maes
Disciplines: Art direction Brand concept Brand strategy Graphic design Identity design Packaging design
Client: Alken-Maes

Reviving Belgium's first lager

Meet Cristal: a relatively small beer brand from the backwoods of a small country. But not just any beer and not just any country: Cristal is the first lager made in Belgium – a nation known for its beer. Although their position is downright unique, Cristal didn’t fully own or displayed it up until now, simply because their craft image prevented it. We helped them reclaim their rightful place at the forefront of the Belgian lager landscape.

The idea

How do you make a brand shine credibly, when its DNA is defined by its modest Limburgian character? The answer is simple: stay close to your roots and tap into what Cristal has always been. A modest, simple lager. A genuine beer of the people.

It’s this low-key personality that makes Cristal the quintessential Belgian lager. Belgians are known for their humble spirit and passionate communal life. Passion is in their blood. It’s what unites them over common interests, from family to food, from sports to science. Through that collective passion, they make great things happen.

It’s the same chain of passion that makes Cristal what it is. A collective of modest but passionate people, each doing their own small part, from farmer to brewer to barman, bringing forth a beautiful, typically Belgian lager. Greatly made, because it’s made it together.

Rebranding Cristal meant, above all, expressing these two essential characteristics of the beer: the low-key, modest roots, and the chain of passionate people behind the beer.

To bring about Cristal’s low-key character, we went back to their roots. Green and orange had always been the brand’s dominant colours. We reclaimed them as a modern-day fiery warm red combined with green detailing.

We further reinterpreted Cristal’s heritage by using their traditional graphic elements in a new and exciting way. A blow-up of the logo cropped at the bottom, ads energy. The heraldry hints at Cristal’s rich past, but clearly looks forward when it’s used in overprint.

Taking inspiration from small-scale screen printing, the vibrant new colours and typographical elements work as graphic assets, one playfully stacked one on top of the other. The visual identity feels fresh and modern, but still fits the modest nature of the brand.

In terms of photography, we introduced dynamic angles combined with the vibrant red colour to create an oversaturated seventies food photography vibe.

Cristal's heroes

To express Cristal’s other key characteristic - the people behind the brand - we commissioned illustrations of the farmers, brewers and bartenders essential to the entire beer brewing process. Their stories are brought to life on the packaging and the website.

WeWantMore challenged us to really rethink the Cristal brand as a young competitor on a national scale. It resulted in a fresh identity that feels like a solid step forward for the brand, and for the Belgian lager category as a whole.

Sarah De Corte, Senior Brand manager Cristal

Next case

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