Beer label design

Craft beer with local heritage

Crankshaft Brewery is a micro-brewery based in Leyland, Lancashire. Angela and Haydn are confirmed petrol heads and sell a Carl Fogarty brew called Foggy Gold. We first worked with them when they became involved with GP Originals, creating an own-label beer called Premix which featured our design and illustrations.

We received the brief to design a new label for a blonde craft beer called Côte de Reiver. The concept was a tongue-in-cheek reference to their coastal location in Leyland, Lancashire; to further fuel the pun the beverage is brewed using French hops. The Albion Reiver was a six-wheeled lorry made in the 1960s under the Leyland Motors brand.

Vintage style on the Leyland Riviera

The Crankshaft team were looking for a style similar to the 1930s travel posters commonly used to advertise trips to the seaside and French Riviera resorts.

We sourced references for the Albion Reiver trucks and researched the local landscape with its important landmarks. After submitting a series of loose hand-drawn scamps we had approval on the layout. We worked up the Lake District landscape in the background blending into the Blackpool seafront, complete with its famous tower and pier. In the sky, a stylised Albion sunray provided space for a typographic lock-up of the beer’s name. In the hero position on the label we drew a classic, vintage Reiver truck.

Raiding the creative toolbox

We used a combination of pen and paper, iPad and Apple Pencil with Procreate and finally Illustrator and Photoshop to produce the finished illustration and print-ready artwork. We created these 3D mockups for Crankshaft to use on their social media channels whilst the beer was being made.

The design was also applied to a pump clip for when the beer is added as a guest ale in local pubs or pop-up bars.