Making shoes for children – The Rite Way.

Start-Rite

Since 1792, Start-Rite has been making shoes for children. And nothing else. That’s why it’s an industry leader in designing, manufacturing, and fitting little shoes for little people.

Start-Rite is proud of its legacy. And after more than 225 years in business, it should be. From its pioneering 1943 nationwide survey, which transformed the way people make and shop for children’s shoes, to the 2018 launch of its 3D fit app – Start-Rite represents timeless design, attention to detail, and bold innovation.

Start-Rite brand identity
Start-Rite brand identity

The inspiration

With a growing market and fast-fashion competitors attracting customers with low prices, Start-Rite needed to refocus, reposition, and re-establish its brand for the future.

Through focused workshops and stakeholder interviews, we were able to uncover what makes Start-Rite different. Unlike many of their competitors, Start-Rite only make shoes for children – that’s all it does.

We drew inspiration from this fact and set about creating a brand that truly represents this unique offer – visually and verbally.

Start-Rite brand we we do
Start-Rite brand statement
Start-Rite brand statement
Start-Rite brand statement

The idea

We created a brand identity that reflects the end user – children. We replaced Start-Rite’s old black, cyan, and grey palette for a more friendly, lighter, and fresher colour scheme. The brand’s previous all-caps typeface was replaced with one that beautifully echos the aesthetic of a children’s story-book.

Furthermore, we introduced new brand words, including key statements, values, and a story that fully inform the refreshed tone of voice. In addition, we established a compelling purpose for the Start-Rite brand and its people to live by.

Start-Rite brand purpose
Start-Rite brand hashtag

Another key addition to the Start-Rite brand toolkit is a new hashtag to support the ever-growing online sales and social media presence. The principle of doing things ‘The Rite Way’ is continued through wider brand communications and messaging.

Start-Rite brand book
Start-Rite brand book

To accompany the ongoing (phased) brand launch, we researched, wrote, designed, illustrated, and produced a brand book, complete with shoelace ribbon marker.

The book was created for and dedicated to the whole Start-Rite family – past and present – commemorating its wonderful heritage and inspiring its onward journey.

Start-Rite brand book
Start-Rite brand book
Start-Rite brand illustrations

We commissioned whimsical and playful illustrations to further bring the new identity to life. This not only provided Start-Rite with a charming, child-like alternative to photography, it also affords greater longevity to imagery as seasons and products change.

Illustration by Charlotte Trounce
Start-Rite brand illustrations
Start-Rite brand illustrations
Start-Rite brand photography

The famous Start-Rite twins live on, continuing to feature throughout the brand – in the form of story-led illustrations, a formal brand icon, and also interpreted via modern campaign photography.

Start-Rite brand book

The principle of doing things ‘The Rite Way’ is continued throughout the brand.

Start-Rite brand book
Start-Rite campaign imagery
The Rite Way campaign for Start-Rite by The Click
Start-Rite brand guidelines
Start-Rite brand guidelines pages

There is genuine openness and honesty to The Click’s people, process and their work which fitted perfectly with our ethos. They have injected new energy in to our brand, allowing it to live and breath – making us relevant for today and the future.

Kate Tansley, Chief Executive Officer, Start-Rite

Start-Rite branding

Credits and thanks: Logotype and S-R monogram: Studio Sutherland (2008) / Twins icon: Rebecca Sutherland / Lifestyle photography: Fiona Burrage / Brand illustration: Charlotte Trounce / Printing: Page Bros.