A daunting directive, indeed: Take away the mystery and apprehension associated with cooking African cuisine through sauce packaging for U.S. consumers. Buenos Aires-based package design agency Tridimage was equal to the task, creating a clean and modern brand and package design for startup Kitchens of Africa.
The brief asked for a brand visually strong and impactful but also approachable and inviting for the simmer sauces and jerk marinades, with ingredients sourced from different African countries. The client didn’t want a design that was too ethnic, but instead one that would fit into mainstream America. The brief asked for a brand that would spark curiosity and compel shoppers to pick it up off the shelf because it’s different—but not “alien”—and also exotic, gourmet, and premium.
Tridimage’s design solution pays homage to African women as the center of the continent’s wide array of authentic cuisines, and textile art motifs represent the richness of the native cultures. The result is a collection of five elegant labels that suggest flavors that will entice the senses. The off-white, pale cream background offsets the bright colors and gold foil, creating colorful and inviting labels.
“We chose patterns based on the spiciness of each product,” says Hernán Braberman, principal at Tridimage. “It’s a very open system because we can play with textures and there are many options with colors.”
The brand logo has an Islamic script feel, pulling influences of northern Africa, and the small “mask” icon accent is in the shape of Africa and holds another spot for the gold foil. Braberman admits it was a challenge to have a large block of descriptive text on the front label, but necessary because of the newness of the product concept. He believes that the text box is balanced well with white space and the other branding elements, and its informative tone reassures shoppers that the product is authentic.