Portland Street Creperie
Maia was approached by a colleague to help design the Portland Street Crêperie restaurant space. It was an exciting challenge and acted as her first foray into the interior design world.
Portland Street Crêperie was the brainchild of a local father-son duo and opened its doors in the fall of 2015. Neil & Max Cook wanted to create a spot where Dartmouthians could grab a quick coffee and crêpe at a fair price, and enjoy the experience equally whether on the go or in-house.
Maia and the team worked with a very tight budget and the space needed a quick turnaround for the opening date — the existing location felt tired and didn’t provide room for much seating.
The branding exercise was completed by Amy Corbett, and the two worked together to keep the spirit present throughout the restaurant experience. Branding through all customer touch-points mixes vintage French-bistro elements with a clean, modern aesthetic, and uses Granada green as the main colour.
Keeping timing and cost top of mind, there were a number of existing pieces that they chose to leave in place, such as the commercial flooring and a portion of the main service area. Efforts were focused on updating lighting, making the service area feel less bulky and more inviting, providing more space for seating, and adding personality.
They picked a concrete-inspired laminate countertop that was functional and affordable, and created a reclaimed barn wood counter facade from boards salvaged by Neil’s in-laws after a Nova Scotia hurricane. To incorporate charm, they chose to keep the natural patina of the boards, exposed brick of an old chimney behind the cash to add more warmth, and added three school house pendants above the service line.
Working with a small space, the team wanted to open things up and take a minimal approach. They used an off-white paint colour to brighten up the space and had a custom bench created to maximize seating and space for customers. One last challenge was creating a versatile menu that could be read from afar and be updated as the menu adapts. They opted to use clipboards that staff could easily swap out as new menu items were introduced and to easily indicate when an item was sold out.
See before and after photos below.