Fare Start

FareStart transforms lives, disrupts poverty and nourishes communities through food, life skills and job training. They are a James Beard award winning non-profit organization, offering job training and entry into the culinary profession to houseless, rehabilitated, and otherwise disadvantaged persons in Seattle. As part of a pro bono refresh of FareStart's flagship restaurant at the crossroads of downtown Seattle and SLU, we were asked to focus on donor recognition, storytelling for those unfamiliar with FareStart's mission and impact, and a partnership with local artists. We also updated the exterior signage to their current brand standards.

Client: FareStart

Firm: NBBJ

My Role: Concept Design, Design Development, Documentation, Artwork Production, Fabrication, Installation

Project Goals: Support FareStart's mission through program awareness, donor recognition, and art intervention opportunities in the refresh of their flagship restaurant.

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In the past, donor recognition had been done with DIY decoupaged logos on paint-your-own-pottery bowls, which occasionally would fall from their mounts and shatter. We purchased lighter weight, shatterproof plates with splashes of FareStart's brand colors, added printed vinyl donor labels, and hung them with rated plate anchors.

Below the donor recognition plates, in a lounge/bar area, is a gallery wall of student photos and some of the key elements of the FareStart story, showing how dining at the restaurant is not only delicious, but has a positive impact on society.

Upstairs, in a lofted dining area, is a collaborative mural from local artists Dozfy and Kate Reingold. Both were given copies of FareStart's coveted cookbook for inspiration, and focused on two of the most basic principles of the FareStart program. Practically, chopping carrots is where students learn their foundational knife skills. With a program that is also about a mental reset, the quote 'Where you come from isn't as important as where you're going," reminds students to look toward their futures.

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