Kentucky Hug

SERVICES  Brand Discovery & Strategy | Tagline Development | Identity Suite Development | Apparel Design | Collateral Design | Social Media Asset Design | Direct Mail Marketing Packages | Brand Identity Guidelines

THE STORYKentucky is full of good things. Bourbon. Horse racing. The Appalachians. Birthdays. Oh, yes, I said birthdays. For my client, Amanda Haddaway, turning 40-years-old was more than a celebration. It was the birth of a new business venture. You see, in honor of the big 4-0, she and her husband, John, hit the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. Each distillery they visited was unique. Yet, there was one thing that kept repeating itself—the way everyone along the trail described that warm feeling you get when you take your first sip of bourbon. They lovingly called it the “Kentucky Hug.” The rest, as they say, is history. Literally. Because history (and a shot or two of coolness!) are the foundation of the Kentucky Hug apparel brand and its identity suite. With it, lovers of bourbon and the Bluegrass State have a whole new way to express that love. And it’s pretty damn smoooooth.

Lisa is an exceptionally talented creative designer who exceeds our expectations every single time we work with her. Her concepts for our brand identity were even better than we had imagined. We love working with Lisa! I definitely recommend Lisa Sirbaugh Creative for your brand development, logo design, and other graphic design projects.


THE SOLUTIONThe Kentucky Hug aesthetic marries tradition with premium-yet-approachable style. The brand was designed to embrace any level of bourbon enthusiast while respecting the tight-knit community, integrity, and passion that are the backbone of what is, without question, a true American original. There’s plenty of legacy and lore in the Kentucky-borne brown liquor. Likewise, there are plenty of hidden (and not-so-hidden) historical references in the identity design. Reportedly, the name “bourbon” came from the French Bourbon Dynasty, and its House of Bourbon coat of arms is showered in dozens of fleur de lis. This was the inspiration behind the identity’s brandmark. I illustrated the mark based on the fleur de lis that sits atop the king’s crown in that coat of arms. I was careful to make this fleur de lis completely unique to Kentucky Hug, working in the duality of a mirrored K. The tagline, America’s Spirited Apparel is more than a play on the word “spirit.” It is derived from the Congressional Resolution designation introduced in 1964 for bourbon: America's Native Spirit. Each of the seven secondary marks has plenty of symbolism and comes with its own story. Here’s just a taste. The KH placard is based on historic, industrial placards. This one showcases the line Small Batch Apparel—a play on the craft and how the KH brand is anything but mass produced. The America's Spirited Apparel 18 Seal has dual meanings—not only was the Kentucky Hug apparel brand born in 2018, but bourbon itself was invented in the 18th century. Not to be left out, the Kentucky Hug Signature Seal features Os (to represent hugs) and Xs (to represent kisses). Sweetly, we have Kentucky embraced inside the O, and for the X, the star marks the spot of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. Warm up with a Kentucky Hug. After all, everyone needs a hug sometimes.

THE SOUVENIRSAmerican Advertising Awards for Logo Design, Direct Mail Marketing Campaign, and Integrated Branding Identity CampaignMUSE Creative Award for Logo DesignMUSE Creative Award for Brand Identity CampaignMUSE Creative Award for Direct Mail Marketing CampaignLogo Lounge Book 11