My latest university project has required me to analyse a brand of my choice. This was to help me determine where the store is positioned in the current market, how they have achieved all that they have so far and what they may need to change. This article is my own critical analysis of my work, what I like about my report and what I would change.
‘Peters’ is most popularly known for the traditional English oxford and brogue style footwear that it sells. These types of shoe have been a staple wardrobe feature for over 100 years. In a fickle and forever changing market place, ‘Peters’ encompasses a steadfast and classic British style that is here to stay. It is for this reason that I wanted my creative report to have an earthy colour scheme – something that made the readers feel sentimental without quite knowing why. I experimented with different colours until I found a soft greyish green tone. I didn’t like the other colours because they were too garish. They were too loud for the hazy, nostalgic scene I was trying to set. I also think the softer colours complimented the image I chose to use for my front cover – a painting by an artist who works from the upstairs room at ‘Peters’ store. I think his work captures the essence of the brand; homey and down to earth with old English undertones.
Once I chose the report’s signature colour, I decided to develop the nostalgic and folksy old English style. I found a series of vintage paper textures on inspirationhut.com and tried them out on my front cover. I really liked the result and the texture became a running theme throughout the report.
I also used the texture of leather to fill in some of the titles. ‘Peters’ is known for its UK manufacturing processes and the quality of the leather used in the footwear they sell, so I wanted to make this clear within the design of my report. I searched online for appropriate textures, but none of them had the specific characteristics of real British leather. Instead, I took a picture of a bag I own that is made from real UK leather. The difference in pattern and colour was very noticeable, so I used my own photograph throughout my work.
Alongside UK leather, ‘Peters’ are also known for their bespoke designs. I wanted to portray this through the arrangement of my work, so I sketched out a standard brogue shoe. I chose to sketch the footwear instead of photograph it, because I wanted to convey how the footwear can be altered and how no design is set in stone. I used this sketch on various pages of my report, to demonstrate how ‘Peters’ mixes traditional design with customisation.
I wanted my report to have a masculine style as well as nostalgic and English. This is because the shoes that are sold at ‘Peters’ are primarily focused on working males between the ages of 30 and 40. To achieve this, I researched magazines aimed at male audiences on issuu.com. I discovered that masculine layouts have strongly defined lines and spaces, so I made sure that every image and block of text was clearly construed within my report.
If I was to redo this project, I would have perhaps chosen only one or two key points about ‘Peters’ to focus on whilst creating my layout, instead of four or five. By doing this, themes may have been more clear and concise. I also would have created an info graphic to better demonstrate where Peters sits amongst its competitors in the current market. However, I am happy with my report layout overall, because it is experimental whilst also sticking to the themes I chose.