South Africa Merino Wool Mark
Our brief was to create an identity for Merino Wool for the South African retail market. Cape Wools recognised that they needed an identity that specifically showcased the Merino Wool product in South Africa and abroad. The wool industry is incredibly competitive and products moving out of countries like Australia were given a far more superior look and feel by virtue of the branding and support campaigns driving their local and global reach. There was also a desire to move the concept of Merino Wool products into the homes of South Africans and create an awareness around the benefits and attributes of the product.
At the time, the use of Merino Wool in fashion and décor was fast becoming a trend due to it being a sustainable and natural fibre. Supporting the local economy also became a feature in terms of local manufacture and export.
We used inspiration from current wool logos and visual vernacular to ensure an instantly recognisable symbol for wool that carried all the attributes of being a local product with high quality standards.
- To develop a symbol that took inspiration from the global visual vernacular for wool and create an identity that was uniquely South African.
- To strategically position Merino Wool South Africa as a high quality, long-lasting product with diverse uses, that is effective for multiple seasons and that has an excellent return on investment for the retail consumer. To make use of retail spaces to generate awareness.
- To develop an advertising campaign targeting particular markets such as women who knit vs women who seek high quality fashion and lifestyle products. To be present at Expo shows both locally and internationally to promote and generate awareness for the Merino Wool South Africa brand.
- To piggyback on the ‘Campaign for Wool’ launched by HRH Prince Charles as patron, in order to create awareness and host wool events including an event at the One and Only, Cape Town which HRH Prince Charles attended and supported.
Retail chains such as Woolworths increased their offering in Merino Blend knitwear, while offering add-ons such as a vintage range of knitwear and moth-proofing to prevent returns. Merino Wool South Africa increased their budget to develop a winter campaign. The development of a softer more luxurious yarn was undertaken to cater to the high-end retail market. All Merino Wool products within Woolworths and other retailers were kitted with a Merino South Africa tag along with wash care instructions.
Woolworths reported a 10.6% increase in sales. Polo South Africa approached Cape Wools for their own Merino South Africa Wool swing ticket for their winter garment range.
Cape Wools Merino South Africa took part in the From the Earth EXPO at the CTICC to bring the farm to the city, and reported over 10 000 adult and 20 000 children visitors to the stand over three days.
Local fashion and lifestyle product designers began to embrace the natural Merino wool fibre as a textile in a far greater way. Far more collaborative projects between local designers, textile houses and the Merino South Africa brands began.
A new range of Merino South Africa wool products started to appear in the market such as Prima Diva Knit Wear, Nuno felt home items, Hextex fabrics, Lana Rossi Merino yarn, Sneeuberg duvets and blankets, Andrea Cavallari Merino tailering, Baywear and Geoff von Klempere, to name a few.
Merino Wool South Africa was invited to the Mohair Summit with a Merino Wool range, made by fashion designer Karen Ter Morshuizen, from Lunar.
Training programmes were put in place with retailers like Woolworths to encourage interest and purchasing in the Merino Wool product range.