Creative Services Case Study


The Sage Mule is a locally owned bistro and bakery serving lunch and breakfast to the hungry folks in downtown Greensboro. It was started by a team who had spent years in the service industry, who were looking for a way to create a better work/life balance in the restaurant scene while filling a niche in the Greensboro dining scene. Serving an all-day menu of breakfast and lunch, The Sage Mule offers food that is both comforting and exciting, pairing classic go-to’s with a chef-driven twist.

The Challenge:

When Steve and Jan Gingher first approached Bouvier Kelly, their restaurant was still largely in the brainstorming phase. From a branding perspective, they knew what kind of food they would be serving, and what kind of atmosphere and experience they wanted to offer. And, of course, they had the name. Outside of that, however, we were thrilled to have a blank canvas on which to begin our creative process.

Starting with an exploration of the kinds of restaurants and places they hoped to emulate, we began constructing mood boards from which to find a direction. Would the restaurant be minimal and modern? Would it have a rustic, down-home feel? We explored many avenues of creative direction before landing on the right combination of rustic, playful and modern.

In addition to working with The Sage Mule team, we had the exciting opportunity to partner with the architectural firm with whom we share an office space: J Hyatt Hammond. Their team was already hard at work on designing The Sage Mule space, and we worked hand-in-hand with them to develop a brand color scheme that would be reflected in the restaurant’s décor. The blue, gold, pink and yellow colorways of our logo and typeface treatments would form the basis of the restaurant interior design, creating a wholly unified brand experience both in digital and physical formats.

The Execution

Once the exploratory period was finished and groundwork was laid, we took the initial assets and got to work building out the brand. We helped their team construct a website, social media platforms, menus and on-site signage. The result is a warm, inviting and playful restaurant that, since opening in late November 2019, has quickly become one of Greensboro’s favorite new restaurants. In addition to all the branding efforts, Bouvier Kelly also manages The Sage Mule’s social media presence, including Facebook, Instagram and ad campaigns on both platforms.

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