NotOnSunday creates an honest and playful identity for CBD brand Unspun

A lot of people are talking about CBD right now, but what exactly is it? For the uninitiated, CBD stands for cannabidiol, which is a chemical compound found in cannabis. However, unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the cannabinoid found in marijuana, CBD does not produce a psychoactive effect or a “high” feeling.

Instead, it plays a beneficial role in regulating various physiological processes, including mood, appetite, sleep, immune response, and pain sensations. For this reason, doctors widely consider it to have positive therapeutic properties.

Unspun is a premium CBD brand based on products created by husband and wife team Joe and Gemma Wilde from their own experience using CBD while living in California. They found that CBD gave them a sense of calm and focus as they balanced the demands of work and family life.

In the UK, they were happy to see CBD go mainstream, but struggled to find a brand they could trust. This is how the Unspun brand was born.

A strictly curated selection of broad-spectrum CBD products is manufactured in Great Britain. Their products use only the best natural ingredients, containing only organically grown EU-certified hemp plants that can be traced back to the hemp fields where they were grown.


London design agency NotOnSunday was tasked with bringing the name, visual look and packaging to life. Mike Willows, co-founder and creative director, explains how the partnership came about. “Gemma and Joe came across some of our previous work that had been featured online,” he recalls. “From initial discussions, we developed a comfortable relationship with both of them, and they liked how NotOnSunday explained our process and approach to brand creation and development.”

Gemma and Joe wanted to explore the world of CBD in a streamlined, honest and fun way, he explains. “When they approached us, they had already developed a brand strategy through customer research and competitor reviews. Their Unspun core values ​​were approachable, simple, positive and empowering, and it was our job to create a brand identity that reflected this.”

“Their central objective when creating the brand was to give them a visual identity that would differentiate them from an ever-growing crowded marketplace, increase brand awareness and help them build trust, credibility and customer loyalty.”

Symbol, logo and typography

After speaking with Gemma and Joe and agreeing on a creative brief, Unspun came up with three very different approaches. “One of these became the core of the idea for ‘Unspun u,'” says Mike. “From our initial discussions, they wanted something that could be owned and distinctive, so we thought about how we could create this, but also make sure it had something to do with the Unspun name.”

The logo is designed and produced in different stages. “After creating the initial u symbol, we started researching fonts that could work well and look balanced alongside the u. We found that we liked the features and details of the lovely Grilli Type Foundry GT Flexa. Once we found the right font, we aligned and adjusted the work mark and the u symbol to make sure they were balanced and had a nice symmetry when worn together.”

Packaging design

Gemma and Joe wanted their branding and packaging design to be approachable but not boring. “We created the packaging design together with the visual identity to make sure there was a nice balance and correlation between the two,” says Mike. “We also explored colors during the creative stages and felt that the tones of the final brand and packaging fit the tone of the overall visual identity.

“The two-tone colors on the packaging allowed us to pull the strengths and variations apart,” he adds, “so people could see that the offerings differed not just in text but in color.”

The Unspun team also wanted to ensure that their products have as little environmental impact as possible. “Once the packaging was finalized and confirmed, we brought in Nick Stacey from ctrl-p studio who was able to work closely with us and Gemma and Joe on the packaging and finishing. Advising us on the best approach and materials to use from a sustainability perspective. The product packaging is designed to be compact, lightweight and easily recyclable, while the labels are all biodegradable and printed with non-toxic ink and glue.”

With Gemma’s background in user experience and Joe’s background in business strategy, they already had a good idea of ​​how they wanted to test the models, adds Mike. “Our initial creation was taken and presented to their trusted partners in the UK and US. The feedback and comments were collated and presented to us, giving us a really clear direction on the popular elements and approaches we had created and presented to them.”

In summary

“Since Unspun is a startup brand and a very personal thing for the founders, we wanted to make sure that the visual look and packaging design were on point and met the needs of the target audience,” concludes Mike. “Working directly with founders and knowing the challenges and risks of launching their own brand means we always have a personal responsibility to give them exactly what they need and want to succeed.”

“Working closely with Gemma and Joe throughout the process, we created a brand that felt distinctive and balanced in both an honest and playful stance,” he adds. “The unspun brand ‘u’ was created to play with the brand name and also meant that we had an asset that worked well on its own and within the brand logo.

“The result is a range of CBD products that can easily adapt and grow with the brand system we created for launch so that new product lines and other materials can be easily added in the future as the company grows and expands its offerings.”

“Our experience with NotOnSunday was excellent,” says Gemma. “They listened to our needs and worked with us to refine them. They created a clear structure for the project that was easy to follow, and they gave us time to make critical decisions about the direction of the brand.

“The result is excellent, and the customer feedback has been very positive. The design is stylish, high-quality and reliable: exactly what our customers wanted. Functionally, it’s easy to implement, and they gave us all the tools we need to keep the brand consistent across all our channels. We loved working with with NotOnSunday and we look forward to doing so again.”

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