2550 Stephens St.
Vancouver, BC  Canada V6K 4K4
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Lifestyle photography: Karen Mordechai


We were following Sunday Suppers and the work by Karen Mordechai ever since we started the studio. Karen caught us by surprise when she reached out through email to inform us about her upcoming project, ILĀ. Karen’s cookbook had been so well received and so it made perfect sense to us when she decided to create her own line of essential ingredients. After some brief introductions, Karen got us up to speed with the exciting progress that had already been made for the project.



Once we got on board the project, we quickly worked through the discovery process to identify the brand direction for ILĀ. Karen informed us of the meaning behind the name; coming from its origins in Sanskrit. The original Hindu mythology describes a dualism in gender for the character of ila. Karen and our team used this as inspiration for the white and black collections of ILĀ. It was also important for us to establish the look and feel of the brand early on to craft the vision Karen had already begun.


left: Pancakes with the wood fired ILĀ maple syrup shot by Linda Lomelino.

right: ILĀ olive oil on Janine Tollady’s kitchen shelf.


Going into the design process, we wanted to focus primarily on the word: essential. We looked to draw inspiration from the nature and story of Karen’s ingredients—being sourced from the best places from around the world. The purity of the ingredients stood out to us and we wanted to achieve a packaging design that stayed true to that aspect. The final packaging labels uses Neenah Plike paper in white and black with copper foiling. When applied to the gloss surface containers, the Plike stock creates a nice contrast with its matte smooth finish.

To see the website, visit:


left: Packaging design process: numerous ideations were sketched, printed on adhesive paper and mocked up on containers.

right: After the design was confirmed, one of the critical last steps was to proofread all copy and graphics.


Packaging Design Process

Near the final stage of the design process, we worked with Tim Chapman of Press NY to ensure our design and vision were translated into print.


Packaging Design: Olive Oil and Maple Syrup

The uppercase O in white was used for the Olive Oil clear bottle design. Paired with a black Maple Syrup bottle in vertical text treatment, the black and white approach derived from the dualism concept was achieved.


Packaging Design: Pure Vanilla Extract

To allow customers to dispense the vanilla extract precisely, we used an uncommon dropper bottle.


Packaging Design: Spices

The 9 spices range from cinnamon, sumac, za’atar spice, cumin, turmeric, black sesame, coriander, smoked paprika to madras curry.


Packaging Design: Peruvian Pink Salt and Cyprus Flake Salt

The three types of garnishing salts were packaged in clear 1–2oz clear glass containers. Graphics were copper foiled onto a white Neenah Plike stock with an adhesive backing.

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left: A closer look at the olive oil bottle design.

right: By having a black label on a black container, the texture and differences in light reflection for each material was essential in the packaging design.


The black collection includes maple syrup, olive oil, wildflower honey, 9 spices and vanilla extract. It was important that the labels’ design system could stay consistent despite the wide variation of sizes.


The white collection includes sea salt, olive oil and 3 garnishing salts. The same label design system was applied except for the change in paper colour.


A recyclable mailing box design with a simple adhesive sticker to seal the boxes.


A closer look at the wildflower honey box design.


left: The ILĀ 0.8oz madras curry shot by Karen Mordechai.

right: The 9 spices shot by the talented Beth Kirby of Local Milk.

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left: ILĀ collection lookbook cover and business card design in copper foil.

right: ILĀ thank you card and information card design.


ila-shop.co Homepage Design

ILĀ’s e-commerce website continued the white and black concept. We believed that photographs were the best medium to evoke the ILĀ brand. On the homepage, we provided plenty of photo area to showcase any featured products, ingredients and lifestyle images.


ila-shop.co Homepage Design

An ample amount of white space was used at the lower section of the homepage to provide visual breathing room.