Same Java, New Look



Same Java, New Look

The Java House, an Iowa City staple since 1994, is announcing the rebrand of their iconic coffee shop. This will be the first update to the brand in its 25 years. These changes are to help reflect the growth and evolution of The Java House and its community.

The rebrand is celebrating 25th anniversary of The Java House and the expansion of the company. This includes five coffee shops, full-service bakery, catering, and wholesale coffee, and a brand new 12,000 sq. ft. roasting facility.

After a quarter of a century, Java House is still providing quality coffee and a cozy atmosphere with branding to match. The new aesthetic has a hint of vintage, rich colors, and a playful but professional touch to keep things familiar but modern.


25 Years & Beyond

We set out to craft a cohesive brand that felt like quintessential Java House. After many late nights, a lot of research, and of course ample amounts coffee, we created an aesthetic that is cozy, gentle, established, and well loved. The Java House brand is ready to embody the essence of the business for the next 25 years and beyond. Grab a cup of coffee and get familiar with our new look.


It’s Not Black & White

The coffee industry was never meant to be black and white. Every coffee has personality just like every Java House guest. Our color palette has been created to reflect the diverse industry and our community. Featuring a primary palette of jewel toned hues and a secondary palette of modern pastels. Vintage design, scratchboard illustrations and bold photographs of our cafes were the perfect bit of inspiration. The new color palette is one that is adaptable, multifunctional, and can work cohesively when used across all brand properties and platforms.


 Playful Illustrations

For the past two decades, Claudia McGhee’s illustrations have been an iconic part of our brand and that’s not about to change. Her beautiful scratchboard artwork and playful creations are known across the state of Iowa. Recognized by Food Network Magazine's "Coolest-Looking Coffee Cups From All 50 States,” Java House’s iconic cup designs will continue to be a key aspect of our identity. McGhee’s identifiable, handcrafted aesthetic, bright colors, and whimsical nature themes are a perfect ode to the midwest and the artisan communities.

In addition, we use sketch style, digital illustrations to help supplement Claudia’s beautiful aesthetic across different media and platforms. This simple icon style still incorporates a playful and handmade aesthetic while being cohesive across different medias.




Vintage Type

Recoleta was created with inspiration from popular 1970s typefaces. You can find “the soft and gentle shapes found in Cooper or fluid, angled strokes in Windsor— mixed into one single design that features familiar yet fresh, modern flavors.” Recoleta works fluidly across print and digital while still maintaining readability and beauty. This typeface has replaced our old Lithograph font, to help create a modern brand with a splash of vintage for a unique look.

We partner Recoleta with Source Sans Variable and Adobe Garamond Pro to help maintain legible text, clear hierarchy and a cohesive aesthetic.

*More about Recoleta.


Coffee has personality just like every Java House guest – and it is important that our brand embraces that.


Home Sweet Home

Familiarity and quality are the sweet spot of The Java House. Combining cozy colors, inviting typefaces, and playful imagery we craft a story of a locally established, well-loved coffee company whose commitment to its guests and signature drinks have earned it an outstanding reputation.

Live life awake. — Thanks for reading!

The Java House | Press Release