Welcome To Friday Fives, Vol. 281

The Working Assembly
4 min readNov 17, 2023

This week we’re stocking up at Costco, taking new logo designs to space, adding smiles to branding, sipping on a breakdown of TikTok tea, and AI-generating hit music tracks.

Speaking of hits, we’re happy to share we received a Pentaward for our work with Marin Living Foods, a small-batch almond milk company.

(THEDIELINE.COM)

Can it Kirkland?

Few private label brands have garnered as much unfettered following as Kirkland Signature. Why exactly is the private label (and its logo) so successful? For one, the label has been unchanged for over 20 years, which builds uninterrupted equity and recognition, reinforcing Costco’s promise of quality. For instance, one TikTok account went viral for its “Can it Kirkland?” videos comparing name-brand products to Kirkland Signature ones. The KS logo, with the pairing of the serif + script fonts, makes it simple. However, the sheer amount of different types of products it’s put on (like these sweatshirts) makes its basic tricolor design a positive asset. Overall, nothing is more American than the great deals and massive quantities of Kirkland Signature.

(FASTCOMPANY.COM)

Reviving an Out-of-This-World Logo

After 20 years of taking some space, the NASA worm logo is back and thriving. Reviving the logo was easy as pop culture gravitates towards it, and NASA allows its logo to be used free of charge. The logo is preferred for applications that benefit from a simpler, modern logo, while still keeping the vintage insignia as the official one. Fashion houses like Coach and Dior have all used the logo in recent designs, and even the spacesuits for the first human mission to the Lunar South Pole were Prada (obviously so that the Martians know we’re high fashion). Much like these luxury brands that deploy scarcity strategies, the logo itself is a testament to the desire for something that no longer exists.

(FORBES.COM)

The Stat that Smiles Back

A lot about how brands use graphics plays on our subconscious, but this study done in Colombia and the United Kingdom shows that brands that use up-curved lines resembling a smile influence our product preference. Better yet, the study determined graphics don’t need a full-blown smile, an upward curve is just as effective. Upward curves used in conjunction with fonts that are perceived as youthful and untraditional get you one step closer to building a brand that makes someone smile.

(THECUT.COM)

A Year in Rewind: TikTok Tea

This article by The Cut might as well be a TikTok time capsule for 2023. From Djerf Avenue’s dupe controversy to Taylor Swift’s doppelgänger abusing her power, and Tarte Cosmetic’s influencer trips or using fake eyelashes in a mascara ad, it’s a deep dive into every moment of drama from the past year. Our personal favorite was the wedding drama of Mikayla Nogueira, a popular beauty influencer who partnered with e.l.f. Cosmetics to create custom e.l.f. x Mikayla wedding products, so naturally, people said it was one big advertisement. Grab yourself a cup of tea and a snack, and strap in for the lore.

(THEVERGE.COM)

Make Your Music Dreams Come True

YouTube is releasing a new generative AI feature called Dream Track, which allows people to generate music tracks from prompts (like this one) or by humming. It will auto-generate 30-second tracks in the style of nine artists, including Charlie Puth, John Legend, Sia, T-Pain, and Troye Sivan, who have agreed to help develop the feature. It comes after YouTube’s struggles with monitoring copyright infringement from AI-generated music tracks because, legally, voices are not copyrightable. Hopefully, this new venture is a successful one because we need the new remix to this T-Pain classic.

Denise Woodard, founder of Partake Foods, delicious and nutritious snacks for those with food allergies, was featured in Forbes for overcoming funding challenges to pave the way for a more equitable future in the food and beverage industry.

Narra, oat milk lattes powered with tea for smooth & focused energy, was featured in Buzzfeed’s 30 Beverage Obsessions.

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The Working Assembly

NYC branding agency exploring the intersection of art, design, technology and culture. Partnering with emerging and evolving brands.