Uwajimaya is Seattle’s oldest and favorite Asian grocer. And Kai Market is their new boutique market concept, located in South Lake Union, also know as Amazonia. This specialty food store features local and international products and grab-n-go bites inspired by the sea. In addition to designing the logo, visual identity system and web experience, Turnstyle collaborated with the Uwajimaya team, Graham Baba Architects and Western Neon to design and install physical and digital signage for the store’s interior and exterior.
The logo features a new mark and stylized typography, with a small endorsement from the Uwajimaya parent brand. While the Uwajimaya name lends credibility to this fledgling brand, it was important to make it clear that this isn't just a smaller version of the flagship store, but rather an altogether new concept. The design elements take their cues from Asian and Japanese aesthetics, but with a Seattle flavor — the goal being to evoke fresh, Pacific-inspired fare.
Collaborating with Graham Baba Architects is one of our favorite things, and Kai Market was another great opportunity to do so. Inspired by the scalloped pattern in the interiors, we used a semi-opaque fish-scale motif to create a privacy screen along one bank of windows to hide unsightly cabinet backs. We also designed the primary identity and wayfinding signs, plus promotional signs and digital menu boards.