Stop – Emmertime!

The Client(s)

Stockholm Brewing Co. are a devoted brewery located in the heart of Södermalm in Stockholm. They take pride in brewing organic beer with local produce such as wild elderflower from parks in Södermalm or rhubarb and grapes from the garden in Rosendal.
Other Half crafts beers in their Brooklyn brewery in NY. They are amongst the most talked about breweries in the world. They represent the “Other Half” of the industry, and are constantly striving to raise the craft beer scene through collaborations both locally and internationally.
From one craft to another the concept of craft x craft x craft was developed. The first crafts are represented by the two breweries and KUF as the third. Craft³

The Project

Craft breweries do collabs for loads of reasons. Apart from hanging out, talking about beer, swapping ideas and even drink the odd beer or two, it helps to enhance the scene. Craft is still tiny compared to big beer, so anything they can do to create buzz helps.
In this case they decided to create a beer inspired by their  growing love of heritage, underused, old fashioned grains with OH’s love of hazy hop-laden ales.
A New England Ipa was born using Emmer Wheat, one of the first ever, domesticated grains. KUF was contacted to create the label and discussions lead to creating a Craft-inspired release campaign. Stop – Emmertime!

The Solution

Being a collaborative beer always implies challenges when it comes to design. OH is famously known for popping graphic patterns covering their cans. We wanted to design a label with references to MC Hammer and the 90’s. We turned our inspiration to another MC – M.C. Escher, famously known for his mind bending tessellated patterns. The result being a set of characters each coloured in that typical more is more manner that reigned during the flashy 90’s.
To top this off we also designed a set of papercraft figures that could be downloaded and incorporated in a competion where happy barhoppers could design their own to win custom merchandise.

Concept & Inspiration

Pattern & Label

Characters & Papercraft

The Process

To emphasise the craft in craft beer we put in a lot of time creating functional papercraft models with focus on both motion and sound. Focus went to prototyping a dancing MC Emmer and a working smartphone speaker built in to the DJ set of a miniature sound system. The larger MC emmer figurine was made using golden vinyl and a gold buillon as a counterweight stand. A few selected bars received the golden figures to draw attention to the beer.

The product launch

Emmertime was launched with a bang! To build a buzz a teaser video was made in a grimy 90s style. A custom made sound track helped build the ambience by the talented duo Gustav Sjöstedt and Martin Gavelin.
A release party was organised at a local bar in Stockholm. On site there were bags containing pre-cut blank versions of the mini-figures. Each guest was given a chance to compete in the “Pimp my MC Emmer” contest by modifying and creating their own characters. Beer, being an obvious social choice of beverage was now accompanied with a new way to converse and exchange creativity.

They were like a
dog with a bone!

Working with KUF was creatively stimulating and rewarding. I knew David and Kim from previous work designing our wine website ( and was very satisfied with the results. So when we came up with Emmertime and our idea of a repeating ‘Hammer-pants’ design, I immediately thought of them. I issued a challenge; to turn my stupid idea into reality.
Once they came up with the ‘basic’ design, they were like a dog with a bone. A very tasty, meaty bone, still full of marrow! What sets them apart is their pushing of the boundaries about what is possible. They were super quick, took great ownership of the whole project and took it several eons beyond where I thought it would go. They are very creative but also very willing to change tack quickly if something seems not quite right from a customer point of view.
In terms of passion for the job, they are like Stockholm Brewing and WINE TRADE: if it sucks, they probably don’t want to do it. It seems like believing in the project was very important to them.
They also have a unique take on building real life tactile design elements in an increasingly detached digital age. This is a fun approach and sets them apart. 
In short, they WAY over-delivered on the original spec. I actually had a problem getting them to stop working (in a good way!) And they also work with a smile on their faces which is one of the best things about them. 

Olly Bartlett
Sales Manager
Stockholm Brewing Co.