Urban Legend

Egg & Dart Books

How We Helped

Brand Development

Publication Design

Website Design

Marketing Roadmap

Digital & Social Strategy

Printed Collateral



Promotional Merchandise

Execution Strategy

C. Emlen Urban was the prolific architect behind over 700 commissions from 1885 to 1937. Most of his work occurred in Central Pennsylvania—namely his hometown of Lancaster and nearby Hershey, as he worked closely with the famous chocolatier to establish the town. Despite the mark he left on history, no comprehensive work on Urban had ever been published.

When local architect and historian Gregory J. Scott, FAIA, approached the Fig Industries team with his manuscript on Urban, it was a project unlike any we had tackled before. However, our expertise in print design, brand identity, and publishing made us the ideal partner to come alongside Scott and his architectural photographer Matthew Tennison to bring the works of Urban to life through the book, titled Urban Legend, and bring his story to the community through a strategic marketing plan.

Creating the World Around "Urban Legend"
As Scott finalized the manuscript and before design could begin, we set out to establish the world around Urban Legend. We at Fig Industries strive to set our clients up for long-term success beyond the final deliverable. In this case, this included creating a roadmap with major milestones, establishing the publishing company, the messaging around that company’s purpose, a visual identity for the publisher, and an online presence to promote the book and facilitate sales. Our team proposed the name Egg & Dart Books—a reference to an ornamental design motif used in architectural moldings and especially used by Urban himself. The accompanying logo includes an artistic rendering of the motif alongside a stylized word mark. The messaging around Egg & Dart Books was born out of a sense of awe and appreciation for the structures that have shaped built environments, defined cities, and provided refuge.
Along with the brand identity of Egg & Dark Books, we also set up a website for pre-sales and sales of Urban Legend, established social media channels for marketing and brand awareness, and began working towards a goal to launch this flagship book within six months.
Designing the Flagship Book
As our attention shifted towards the design of Urban Legend, we first began by exploring the vision for the book with both the author and the photographer—the details that were important to them and the tone of the piece. Using extensive research on other historical book design and best practices, we settled on a 9.5” by 12” coffee table book with a clean, minimalistic, and cinematic look. We were inspired by the short stories being told in the book and designed it around these individual vignettes. Taking in Urban’s designs, his sketchbooks, and even his handwriting, we immersed ourselves in his aesthetic as we began to build out the persona of the brand and of the book.
“We noticed there was a lack of ostentatiousness with the design of Urban’s buildings. They were stately and beautiful, but he wasn't overdoing it. That refinement and that restraint worked itself into the way the book was designed.” – Jason James, Fig Industries Creative Director
We also knew the author and photographer were extremely passionate about the project, which had been four years in the making, so we worked to capture that passion in the design of the book as well. Every single detail that we chose mattered—down to the typefaces, the paper stock, the finishes, and, of course, how we positioned the photography and the writing. To establish the book as a true coffee table work, we also introduced key elements to elevate it and showcase Urban in an interesting way. This included vellum inserts of Urban’s original building sketches, a foldout timeline of every commission completed by Urban in his 52-year career, and a hand-drawn illustrated box to hold the finished product.
Launching "Urban Legend"
As we eagerly looked to the launch of Urban Legend, we executed a robust marketing campaign to establish the Egg & Dart Books brand, create a buzz around the launch with exclusive offerings, and drive traffic to the website for pre-sales through print and social media advertising. Our team also created launch materials including pop-up banners, bookmarks, buttons, and signage to accompany the book. For every touchpoint, our team ensured the consistency of both messaging and branding for the suite of marketing materials we created. The plan culminated in a 500-person launch party, where author Gregg Scott signed copies of the book for those who had pre-ordered and all of the people involved in this monumental project would be celebrated.