The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is a destination-in-the-calendar event bringing together some of the most visually exciting flora-based displays from around the world. Our client Raymond Blanc had the opportunity to ‘brand’ a VIP area within the show. These experiences can be very corporate and joyless, in stark contrast to what people know and love of the flower show.
We worked with Raymond to bring his vision for the garden to life and transport his guests to another world. We wanted to create a truly memorable experience for guests from the moment the received the invitation right through to stepping through the gate of Jardin Blanc.
OUR STRATEGY: THE PLACE WHERE FLOWERS AND FOOD MINGLE
Raymond is an extraordinary man with real creative vision. He’s also someone who doesn’t take himself to seriously and enjoys whimsical elements and ‘child-like’ fun that transport people from the everyday. We were inspired by the idea of Kitchen Gardens where flowers grew side by side with vegetables and food. We liked the idea of this being a social event and personifying the flowers and food mingling with the good people of the Chelsea Flower Show.
Conceptual sketchbook – that bought alive everything across the entire journey from invitation to the event itself
Research and roots – to understand the values of RHS, the consumer and where Raymond’s brand values met. Exploring the visual language of botany and drawing inspiration from Chelsea’s heritage so our thoughts were rooted in truth
Naming and tone – a naming exercise to ensure that the key messages and selling points of the various packages for VIP could be presented in a more engaging way
DESIGN STRATEGY: PLAYFULLY HANDPICKED AND HANDDRAWN
Naming – We named the entire area Jardin Blanc and bought a sense of occasion and relevance to Chelsea by creating a whimsical illustration style that combined Raymond’s two loves: flowers and food, inline with his vision for the event.
To help distinguish and sell the unique points of each of the VIP packages we paired a selection of exquisite, historical flowers like the Lily, Tulip and Primrose with playful illustrations to accentuate Raymond Blanc’s vision and entice guests with warm-hearted facts, stories and drawings.
Visual storytelling – Each flower told a great story for our guests and their packages, and was chosen to represent the key feature of the package we were offering. The Tulip represented the champagne package, named so because of its inspiration for the original champagne glass in the 1930. The Primrose was a visual metaphor for the evening package due to its beautiful evening bloom in the deepening dusk. Last, but by no means least was our Lily package, which was the perfect identity for the opening Queen’s day at Chelsea, after the Queen Elizabeth’s nickname “Lillibet”, given to her by The Queen Mother.
Bringing the magic – To express the warmth of the Raymond Blanc brand, and add a touch of magic, the illustrations were hand-drawn. In order to give guests a memorable experience possible right from the word go, we designed bespoke box packages emblazoned with illustrations and stories to send out as invitation packs and stir excitement ahead of the day.
The same illustrations from the package, now at huge scale, then greeted guests as they arrived on the day. The palette was chosen to be an authentic capture of spring colours.