Hartje Bos

International chef goes BoLo

As an experienced chef, Vlado naturally loves food and hosting friends and customers. After years working abroad, he wanted to grow stronger roots in Amsterdam by opening a small food shop offering affordable and delicious homemade meals.

Building community with good food

Vlado also wanted to help build a stronger sense of community in Amsterdam’s Bos en Lommer, a formerly rough neighborhood that had been struggling to find its heart during a period of increasing gentrification.

We started from scratch, by talking at length with Vlado about his vision. Then we moved on to:

  • Interview people in the neighborhood
  • Investigate the history of the neighborhood
  • Competitive analysis
  • Outline of Vlado’s goals and vision
  • Mood board of art directional style
  • Strategic brand story

A name with a warm heart

Naming new shop was our next step. By calling the shop “Hartje Bos”, we managed to combine Vlado’s love of the Bos en Lommer neighborhood with his exuberantly warm personality. Then we created an:

  • Inspiring brief for the designers
  • And supervised the design process

Vlado and his shop were immediately popular with his neighbors. Hartje Bos has been featured in local and national publications, and is enjoying a loyal following – which continues to grow.

People also love the branding design, which represents both the trees of “bos” (which means woods in Dutch) and a spoon. The shop is now the “hart” of the neighborhood, just as we envisioned.