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Aspen Homes

B2C WEBSITE
online/interactive
MAGAZINE AD
sales/marketing
LOGO
elements of design
B2C WEBSITE
online/interactive
MAGAZINE AD
sales/marketing
LOGO
elements of design

The client and brief

Contribution

  • Company rebrand
  • Website design
  • Print collateral
  • Marketing
  • Advertising
  • Social media

Tools

  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe InDesign
  • Sketch

Aspen Homes is a premier custom home builder in North Idaho for 25 years. They build Northwest Craftsman and Rustic Modern style homes, targeting both high net worth and middle-income homeowners. They have diversified their audience to ensure they stay relevant in an ever fluctuating economy.

In 2013 I was given  the opportunity to rebrand this local company and unify its visual assets. At the time, they had five different logos representing their company. The objective was to design a timeless identity and create all-new print collateral for a 20-year anniversary reveal.

Challenge 01 - the identity:

How might we craft a timeless identity that visually represents Aspen Homes as a premier home builder in the Northwest?

Credit

  • Me - Design
  • Ben Tan - Creative direction

The identity needed to be welcoming, timeless, rustic, and have elements of the Northwest in it. It had to be a design with a logo mark, so over time, the mark could stand on its own and be easily identifiable.

Old
New

Challenge 02 - supporting assets:

How might we create a consistent collection of visual assets to help the identity shine anywhere it is placed?

The supporting assets created started with a few core visual elements that helped anchor Aspen’s rustic and craftsman home designs. I chose wood grain textures with a washed effect to ensure it wouldn’t distract from the content. I tried to bring the light and dark browns into the design to match the woods and stains used on most all Aspen Homes. These decisions ensured a consistent visual language and a cohesive experience.

Early supporting assets

Challenge 03 - the website:

How might we craft a website that stands out from the competition and elevates the product?

Credit

  • Me - Creative direction & content
  • Zach Grantham - Web design
  • Seth Dowsma - Web dev.

Designed in 2014, the website was intended to carry the design elements, the wood texture, and rustic design while still staying classy. The biggest challenge was how to make sure it didn’t go overboard and take away from the users experience. Winning an ADDY award in 2015, the site still gets compliments from customers. Due to time constraints, my role in the website project was creative direction and content writing. Eden Creative was tasked with design and WordPress development and did a spectacular job.

visit the website

Challenge 04 - evolving the brand:

How might we continually evolve the brand over time to relate to the audience?

Credit

  • Me - Design & strategy
  • Jamie Blattstein - Content writing

The voice of the company had always leaned toward the higher net-worth home buyer. However, the new mid-income buyer started to take more market share. I wanted the brand’s voice to become more playful through marketing, while not alienating the higher net-worth buyer. I partnered with a talented content writer and came up with messaging that was a bit more cheeky.

The lot sign is where I wanted to change the experience. Lot signs are all the same. The builder, the phone number, the website. Why not make people smile a bit, and have them looking forward to the next sign. Make them pay attention to the builder that is willing to entertain them a bit. For me, this was the most fun because it allowed me to break the mold.

Targeting mid-income buyers

Lot sign
Business
cards
Billboard
Directional signs

Targeting high net-worth buyers

Magazine ads

Challenge 05 - crafting the communities:

How might we build identities for new Aspen driven developments that fit the brand and community?

Alpine Point Credit

  • Me - Creative direction & design
  • Cody Powell - Graphic design

Hayden North Credit

  • Me - Creative direction & design
  • Cody Powell - Graphic design

In North Idaho, Aspen Homes is synonymous with quality and attention to detail. When a homeowner buys an Aspen Home it carries a sense of pride. With a strong reputation for higher-end homes, creating new housing communities helps supply homes for this demand. My job was to develop identities for new communities that aligned with the type of home, price point, and the surrounding area. I was blessed with the opportunity to create the look for a variety of different communities. Here’s a collection of some of those.

View South Shore Seven project

Conclusion - trend setting designs:

Shaping a brand that would set the trend for home builders in the community.

I cannot be more grateful for this client. They were the first big company to give me the opportunity to use my skills to push the envelope, try new things, and elevate a brand through design and marketing. When I rebranded Aspen Homes, local home builders were boringly similar, lacking visual variety and spark. The launch of the rebrand in 2014 set off a chain reaction to neighboring home builders playing catch-up. Over the next three years, almost every builder was going through a rebrand. I am flattered that I could be the trendsetter.

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