Creative Thinking and Doing

As designers, strategists, writers, and storytellers, we collaborate with our clients to inspire the status-quo and create the future. 


Our Services:

• Brand Strategy & Consumer Insights

• Packaging & Label Design

• Brand Experience & Environment Design

• Naming & Messaging

• Print & Digital Design

• Custom Photography

 
$10,000+
 
$100 - $149 / hr
 
2 - 9
 Founded
2014
Show all +
Brooklyn, NY
headquarters
  • 754 Halsey Street
    Brooklyn, NY 11233
    United States
other locations
  • United States

Portfolio

Key clients: 

food, beauty, consumer products, beer, wine, liquor, cannabis

Branding and Packaging Design Beauty Brand Image

Branding and Packaging Design Beauty Brand

Tea Branding and Packaging Design Image

Tea Branding and Packaging Design

Health Food Packaging Design Image

Health Food Packaging Design

Alcohol Packaging Design  Image

Alcohol Packaging Design

Wine Label Branding and Packaging Design Image

Wine Label Branding and Packaging Design

Branding Design / Identity System Image

Branding Design / Identity System

Fashion Brand Packaging Design Image

Fashion Brand Packaging Design

Reviews

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Rebranding for Cannabis Company

"They make a great partner, they have the talent and a network of skilled experts."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
Oct. 2018 - June 2019
Project summary: 

CityState Creative rebranded a cannabis company. Their team was responsible for creating a cohesive design across all channels, from the website to marketing collateral. 

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Denver, Colorado
Marji Chimes
Chief Marketing Officer, Coda Signature
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The branding has received positive feedback from consumers and industry members. CityState Creative creates packaging and designs that stand out. The team forms successful partnerships to encourage collaborative relationships with clients.

The client submitted this review online.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your company and your position there.

I am the CMO of a licensed manufactuers of cannabis infused edibles, topicals and concentrates. We are based in CO and CA and are building a national, premium brand.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

For what projects/services did your company hire CityState Creative?

As we prepared for our launch in CA, we needed to update our brand across all of our public facing channels - packaging, collateral and website.

What were your goals for this project?

Maintain the original voice of the brand but give it more sophistication.

SOLUTION

How did you select this vendor?

We threw out a very wide net looking for agencies that had strong design, digital and packaging experience. We narrowed it down to three and ultimately we chose the City State because of their demonstrated ability to project premium brands with photography, art direction and consistency.

Describe the project in detail.

We started with a brand strategy that then drove us down the path to a redesign of all of our packaging. The team art directed all of the product photography and then Casey created an updated template for our bar, topicals and concentrate packaging. From there the team designed wireframes for the website and ultimately built out a wordpress site that we can update ourselves without any support from IT.

What was the team composition?

Kahlil was our account manager. Casey was our creative director and then the City State brought in various subject matter experts as the project unfolded. We had a very talented team doing the product photography and food styling and then a very strategic and tactical team that built the site.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Can you share any outcomes from the project that demonstrate progress or success?

The site has been live since June and we have received great feedback - from the industry as well as consumers. It is easy to navigate and beautiful to experience. As far as the packaging goes - we've once again received exceptional feedback and been told that it is a true differentiator.

How effective was the workflow between your team and theirs?

The back and forth was great. I can be kind of challenging and demanding and Kahlil and Casey did a great job managing scope while also delivering above and beyond.

What did you find most impressive about this company?

They make a great partner, they have the talent and a network of skilled experts.

Are there any areas for improvement?

The team is tight and nimble. At times, I could have used a bit more support on project management.... however, it wasn't in our budget, so that is kind of on me.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Branding, Packaging Design, & More for Cannabis Co.

"CityState Creative had the strongest connection between strategy and creativity."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
June 2017 - Oct. 2018
Project summary: 

CityState Creative worked on producing a brand identity paired with a website and packaging design for a new product in the constantly changing and the stigmatized cannabis industry.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Los Angeles, California
Lynsey Hicks
Director of Growth, Weekenders Cannabis
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The new brand gets tons of positive feedback for its visual appeal. CityState Creative conducted a smooth project despite internal struggles to make design decisions. Their cannabis industry knowledge and ability to turn ideas into designs that are fit for the market are highlights of their work.

The client submitted this review online.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your company and your position there.

I’m the director of growth at Weekenders Cannabis. Our company is a new entrant into the rapidly expanding legal cannabis market in California. While based in LA, we have operations in Humboldt County as well as San Diego. I oversee brand growth and partnerships.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

For what projects/services did your company hire CityState Creative?

We hired CityState Creative to help us further develop our concept and bring it to life with a full brand identity, a website, and packaging design.

What were your goals for this project?

Our goal was to create a distinct and memorable brand and compelling packaging design that would help shift the perspective and conversation about how cannabis is viewed in the marketplace. We also wanted to develop a brand identity that was approachable and welcoming toward women, while not exclusively for a female audience.

SOLUTION

How did you select this vendor?

We were looking for more of a partner rather than a vendor, and that’s what we found with CityState Creative. While we met with other design agencies that we liked, we felt that CityState Creative had the strongest connection between strategy and creativity combined with a deep knowledge of the cannabis industry.

There has been a lot of cannabis culture appropriation going on in the industry, and that was not at all the case with CityState Creative. They really knew and appreciated the culture, which was very important for us.

Describe the project in detail.

Once we reached an agreement to work together, we kicked things off with an interactive discovery session which was followed by a presentation of a competitive audit they did. After that, we moved on to producing the creative brief. Once we were satisfied with that, we began the development of the website and other creative material, going back and forth with revisions until we landed on the final designs.

What was the team composition?

We mostly worked with the two founders, which we felt was a key part of our success with this project. That said, their other team members had supporting roles throughout the process.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Can you share any outcomes from the project that demonstrate progress or success?

We’ve received lots of tremendously positive feedback from companies and individuals both inside and outside of the cannabis industry. This feedback was critical when we were in the concept phase and doing market research.

How effective was the workflow between your team and theirs?

Other than the minor challenges of being in different time zones, the work flow between our two teams was very smooth. Ultimately, the project took a bit longer than expected but that was in part because it took us longer to make final decisions around some design elements.

What did you find most impressive about this company?

The way that they took our initial insight and thoughts and were able to expand on them to create something that we felt would really resonate in the marketplace was outstanding. We were also really impressed with their knowledge of the cannabis industry. This experience contributed to managing the challenges of packaging design within an industry where requirements and regulatory information are in constant flux.

Are there any areas for improvement?

They should expand their footprint in the Los Angeles market.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Collateral Development for Community Agriculture Organization

"Most impressive was their ability to take multiple pages of copy and return them looking better than we imagined."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Less than $10,000
 
Mar. - Apr. 2019
Project summary: 

CityState Creative developed various publications for a nonprofit agriculture organization, including brochures and a Five Year Report. They handled the copy layout, photo selection, and charts.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Keene, New Hampshire
Matt Hunger
Communications, Northeast Farm Access, LLC
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Fundraising increased markedly since the engagement began. Expertise, meticulousness, and ability to turn constructive feedback into on-time deliverables were hallmarks of their work. The team’s quality materials set them up for potential future engagement.

The client submitted this review online.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your company and your position there.

I'm the communications coordinator for Northeast Farm Access, LLC (NEFA). We bring together farmers, social investors, and local allies to revive and transform sustainable agriculture in the region. Our projects create long-term access to farmland and food while also growing farmer and investor equity. With investor support, we buy land, transition it to organic, and lease it long-term and affordably to experienced farmers.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

For what projects/services did your company hire CityState Creative?

We needed help putting together various publications.

What were your goals for this project?

We want to present all of the work NEFA has done over the past five years to current and future investors.

SOLUTION

How did you select this vendor?

We were impressed with CityState Creative's body of work, which showed versatility and a like-minded social-value aspect to their business.

Describe the project in detail.

CityState Creative helped put together three publications: a 64 page Five Year Report, and two fundraising brochures for Agricultural Centers we’re looking to establish. The Five Year Report tells the stories of the farmers who work at the agricultural centers we've created in the past five years. It has about 60 pages of copy, with appropriate photos and financial charts.

What was the team composition?

Our main point of contact was Casey (Creative Director, CityState Creative). 

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Can you share any outcomes from the project that demonstrate progress or success?

We're thrilled with their design work. One of the brochures has already helped us raise over $250,000 in just a couple days after its publication. We were able to get the materials published much quicker than expected thanks to their clear design, help in selecting the best photos, and quick response to our requests for edits.

How effective was the workflow between your team and theirs?

The workflow was handled very effectively. Casey was able to collate numerous requests and promptly return a new version of the project.

What did you find most impressive about this company?

Most impressive was their ability to take multiple pages of copy and return them looking better than we imagined. They took our ideas and made them a reality.

Are there any areas for improvement?

There's nothing to improve, we'll definitely be using CityState Creative again.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer