Vest has become one of Riga’s most well known urban bars, social venues and general hang out spots. Even Thomas Hendrik Ilvess, the former president of Estonia, approves. But how did it all come together?

If you know a thing about Riga, you know how active and diverse the city’s bar life is. As active as it is, it’s also known to outgrow its bars and move on to other things.

Challenge — How do you design a bar that would last?

So when designing the Vest brand, we wanted to create something that would last. A place that would reflect the founders’ vast interests outside mixology, such as motorcycles, sports, and music. Sounds great, but how do you do that exactly?

Creative Concept

There’s always been something strange about Vest. On one hand, it is just a bar, sure. But on the other, it is so much more. It’s as if it’s more of a lifestyle movement of adventure, friendships, motorcycles and sports than anything else. It has a certain vibe that’s not quite from this time. It’s almost as if Vest is the modern incarnation of the types of bars that came before it, perhaps even as long as a century ago. It is essentially the modern western bar.

Creative Concept — Contemporary Western

Contemporary Western

And so we wanted to find a symbol that would capture the feeling of those old-school places that embraced adventure, freedom and excitement. And what symbol is more universally associated with adventure, if not a horse on its hind legs. It also didn’t hurt that it’s a nod to Vest’s obsession with motorcycles.

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In addition, the entire brand design shtick for Vest relies in the pairing of modern items with their historical counterparts. So you get a horse instead of a motorcycle, or a pipe instead of a cigarette. Even the signage has a certain historical feel to it.

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Brand Ecosystem

And so it’s not a surprise that Vest has embraced its brand design, which has found its way into the in- and exterior of the place, the employees’ rides, be that cars, motorcycles or bikes, and even strange places such as Ingemars' arm in the form of a tattoo.

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Results — No more than two years since its launch Vest has reached its break-even point.

Overpriced not only helped us achieve what would often seem impossible — creating a bar in Riga that would last — but also helped create a really special place we all love and care for.

Ingemars Dzenis
Vest