Russell & Wait

By Oliver Derosier

Back in 2013, the good folks at Trampoline stumbled upon a nifty typographic treasure right in their own backyard. From the renovation of an old Glens Falls building came a handful of throwaways, among them a vintage, hand-lettered sign. The Tramps rescued the sign from a dumpster and carried it back to the shop, no-doubt saving it from certain demise.

The typography of the sign was strikingly unique, with careful attention given to every last letter. The whole sign was so exceptional, it was decided by all that a typeface ought to be made in its honor.

The valiant task was assigned to one of Trampoline’s very own interns, Emily Ruchlicki, who took on the challenge with gusto. Thanks to a great new App: Adobe Capture, Emily was able to scan the letterforms onto her phone, and instantly convert them into vector shapes.

Ai Screenshot 1
From there she whittled away at the details, making sure every ascender, loop and stem was just as it should be. The end result? A typeface all its own, brought back to life from a bygone era.

Ai Screenshot 2

After all was said and done, Emily named her new, throwback typeface after the stationery store that had occupied the building: Russel & Wait.

As for the original creator, whoever you may be, we thank you for your diligence and hard work! Now, the team at Trampoline has a spiffy new typeface in their collection, and an awesome story to go along with it.


It’s pretty incredible how many vintage design goodies are out there, just collecting dust in an old basement or flea market. To think that old sign might have been turned into wood chips is a sad thought indeed. Instead, the old beaut now stands tall and proud in Trampoline’s home base, as if it had always been there. Who could say how many more creative gems are out there just waiting to be discovered by the right person. Inspiration is so often found in the places we’d last expect, you just have to keep your eye out for it!

All That is Created & Not Used

The office works like an apple tree, roots deep in the community, with everyone growing tall within the agency. Ideas branch off, stretching out, branching again, more ideas and refining and details. It’s exciting to watch everything take shape. So many hours are spent thinking about how to make each idea successful, and by the time the finished product reaches the client every possible detail has been critiqued and discussed. Some ideas are pruned, left on the cutting room floor, their seeds saved for another time. Others are developed fully, blossoming and growing fruit. Eventually, everything deemed worthy is harvested, gathered up and packaged up for inspection by the client.

You bring the client your best work; work you know will make an impact; a basket of perfectly ripe, beautiful apples.

The client tells you they prefer peaches.

My past three months at Trampoline were not spent designing, but rather writing and observing. As a media intern, my point of view was not that of a designer pitching their ideas, but that of the consumer, awed by the talent and sheer volume of work that passes over these desks each day. And the most shocking part to me, as someone who has always been moved by good design but without a clue of what goes into it, was that for every finished product, there are stacks of other options, either finished or close to, that were rejected by the clients.


So by the time that you, the consumer, reach for the 6 pack of beer with the funky labels that caught your eye at the store, that packaging has grown from a single idea to a franken-design made up of a collection of parts from other ideas and other designers. Rarely, if ever, does a project go from start to finish without a series of noes. Although it can be disheartening to think of all the effort and resources put into work that will never see production, in truth, these misfit designs are an essential part of the process. Maybe they’ll be reworked into a new project, or used as an example of the capabilities of the agency. Maybe they just act as a creative exercise to push the project into a new territory.

Wherever these ideas end up after they’re trimmed from the tree, they serve as the tinder that keeps the creative fire burning.


Author: Megan Erickson, Media Intern 2016

Design delivered from the 518

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