Learning Our Design Process with Coney I-Lander

Learning Our Design Process with Coney I-Lander

  • On March 14, 2017
  • coney-i-lander, coneys, design, merchandise, merchandising, Oklahoma, shirt concepts, t-shirts, tulsa

Tulsa has plenty of restaurant chains, but none quite as historical or unique as Coney I-Lander. They represent one of the city’s oldest restaurant traditions, with seven locations in Tulsa, Owasso, and Jenks. Christ Economou opened the first Coney Island 5-Cent Weiners in Tulsa in 1926, and the tradition has only grown from there.

Here’s a quick reference guide for this article:

Coney (big C) = Coney I-Lander
coney (little c) = Coney’s paramount product, with toppings such as cheese, chili, mustard, and onions.

Don’t be caught calling it a hot dog. Hot dogs are what you cook in the microwave and cut up into Mac & Cheese. The coney is a whole different story. The cheese, buns, and chili for a coney are all patented ingredients. These patents make the coney unique and worthy of high praise, especially with Tulsans who know just how good these 3-bite treasures are.

Now that you are Coney knowledgeable, let’s move on.

Coney asked us to develop a line of shirts for them aimed to increase brand awareness and stay top of mind with customers – as if the coney’s deliciousness wasn’t enough.

Creating the right t-shirt for a given client takes more than pressing ink into a shirt – it takes thought, design and a whole lotta love (queue the Led Zeppelin track). I’ll explain our process by showing you the steps we took with Coney, and how we went from drawings in a sketchbook to hundreds of beautifully printed shirts inside of their stores.

Here are the steps it took to produce Coney’s shirts:

  1. Research (ie, discussion and lots of coneys)
  2. Concepting
  3. Designing
  4. Printing

Because of the importance placed around the coney, we sought for the t-shirt design to be just as important. See some of the sketches below to get an understanding of where our design team was headed, and some of the concepts that were developed to help better understand their brand.

 

Counting Coneys

coney shirt concept

coney oklahoma shield shirt

no coney is an island

After sketching out a few key ideas, we zeroed in on three designs. After discussing the meanings and layouts of the three designs, we landed on a winning shirt design they are currently selling at their stores. You can view this shirt below.

 

coney island shirt design concept

Coney Final Shirt Design

Coney has been an incredible partner and we have a blast designing shirts for them. It makes our job easier designing and printing for such a well-respected establishment in the Tulsa community. As you can see, we might love eating coneys just as much as we love drawing them.

coney mythic crew

From Operations Manager, Kyle Cermak,

“Wearables, just like food, should always be a positive experiential process. The producer must have passion about the customer’s brand, the customer must have a great message (branding) to communicate, and that message must emotionally appeal to the consumer. We could not have asked for a better partner than Mythic Press to deliver on these three important principles. They paired excellent concepts and design work that aligned with our company’s history in order to create a series of t-shirts that our customers really loved. And, working with their staff was just good, old-fashioned fun!”

Are you ready to create some new looks for your company? We would love to start the conversation about how we could implement new designs for your merchandise program. Click here to fill out our contact form.

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