I’ve taken a few months off writing this blog and for good reason – my digital soapbox has been undergoing major renovation!
2016 ushered into the room a well-planned merger of our two firms and a resultant renaming. Assembling was no problem – we were already tight – renaming was another issue. In realty, McAlpine Tankersley Booth and Ferrier sounded too much like a law firm. And what about the poor person who had to answer the phone with that mouthful? No, our collective goal was to solidly gather and clarify our message. As in our work, careful editing was paramount. Also, it’s always been important to us to build a legacy firm. That is, one that could act as a fertile greenhouse for the younger generations under our tutelage – something that can and will continue. As our press release reads:
Over the years, we’ve assembled some of the most talented people in the design industry. As a result, we’re proud to say we’ve built a house that’s part business, part school and part family. Realizing we’re stronger and have more to offer as a whole, we’re coming home to center. So we have married our firms McAlpine Tankersley Architecture and McAlpine Booth & Ferrier Interiors. We’re now simply McALPINE. Under this big, splendid roof, we are doing it all and doing it all together offering full architectural and interior design services in our four locations: New York, Atlanta, Nashville and Montgomery.
And this rebranding (I despise that word – it makes us sound like we’re New Coke) called for a new look. Of course, being designers, we’re all up for redecorating! Since this was our chance to be the client for the change, we set about interviewing ad folk from all across the country. Of initial importance to us was a untainted eye. We wanted to work with someone who had never really worked with an architect or interior designer before. All pre-conceived images of what makes an Architect® or Interior Designer® was to be left cleanly at the door. We’ve never been like anyone else so we didn’t want to look like everyone else.
After an exhaustive search, we landed in the capable hands of the Washington D.C. based firm Design Army. We were initially drawn to their work because it was at once classic, fresh and evocative – traits we try to embody in our own doings. This group, however, tread mostly in the worlds of Fashion, Theatre and Entertainment so we were curious to see what they would make of us.
Design Army’s first order of business was to create a logo for the newly named McALPINE. We wanted something strong yet subtle and discussion lead to the typefaces of iconic fashion houses. After all, this was not to be just a name anymore, this was to be a new structure housing a host of creatives. We reviewed a number of offerings and happily hung our collective hats on this – a font Design Army created especially for us. It’s a clever combination of traditional serifs and straight contemporary type – an apt representation for our new “house.”
Next up was the website – one thing we wanted was something that would evoke powerful emotion right off the bat. I likened visiting a designer’s website to speed dating – you’ve got a limited amount of time and attention span to make someone fall in love with you. Still pictures (a designer’s stock in trade) can start to do that but excitement certainly built when the discussion turned to the creation of a movie. I’m a big connoisseur of movie trailers and TV show openings so the concept of a two minute film containing our work and words seemed ideal to tell our story.
But here, I’ll let the final work speak for itself:
So that’s a few behind-the-scenes tales from our “rebranding” exercise. If you’d like to see the final website in its glory, please visit mcalpinehouse.com:
The new logo has also begun to appear on our respective office doors. New York and Nashville are already flying under the new flag. All four of our bases are now fully staffed with both architects and interior designers so we can offer the finest of fully integrated or separate services.
Our family welcomes invitation into yours.
for my fellow McALPINE partners:
Bobby McAlpine, Ray Booth, Susan Ferrier, Chris Tippett, John Sease and David Baker.
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