Frank Chartrand RGD shares tips for creating an elegant look on a small budget with identity for Sudbury café

Case Study by Frank Chartrand RGD, Founder, Bureau

Café Petit Gâteau (CPG) is a small coffee and cake shop located in beautiful downtown Sudbury, inside the historic flat-iron building at 149 Durham Street. They make fresh espresso, coffee, tea, cupcakes and other tasty treats. Inside their space, you'll find a perfect mix of Scandinavian design and Japanese detail, furnished with custom cabinetry and furniture from Mjölk.


I approached Café Petit Gâteau when I saw they were moving into the space on a cold winter morning—owners Yoshi and Derek were immediately responsive to the idea that good marketing and strong design would not only help their business become successful, but that Bureau's design sense would align perfectly with their ideas for the café.

Over the past year, Bureau's work on this project has involved developing the café's branding, stationery and web presence. Since the business launched, CPG has been growing like crazy—there are even rumours that Ryan Reynolds and his wife Blake Lively visited the shop recently!


The design brief called for something modern that paid tribute to the vintage signage of Parisian cafés. After researching the idea, Bureau was able to piece together letters from old signage which were then customized for CPG to create the logotype.




CPG identified the café's ideal client as someone who enjoys a morning stroll for coffee, but who looks for something a little richer, more pronounced and more exquisite.

The target audience for this project included people who drink coffee and love treats, and who are willing to spend a little extra for them - people who appreciate non-drip coffee, gluten-free cupcakes, etc.


Two main audiences were identified by the client:

  • Primary Audience: 20 to 30-year-old artsy crowd
  • Secondary Audience: 40 to 50-year-old professionals working in the downtown area.

Challenge and Design Process

The team involved in the project were myself, Frank Chartrand RGD, as project manager; Nico Taus Prov. RGD as creative director, and Matthew Lehtela Prov. RGD as web designer.

Working on a small budget meant we needed to be smart about where money was spent—signage was sourced out, and Bureau installed decals ourselves by hand to trim costs. Since we thought it was more important to allocate funds toward the creative, we chose a relatively low-cost printer to print business cards. The project was completed on budget, and the client was very pleased.

"I can't say enough about the great work that Frank and Bureau have done for my small business. From original typography in the logotype to beautiful execution of the website, Bureau's sharp ideas and creativity definitely helped Café Petit Gâteau stand out in Sudbury's marketplace. Frank always gives 120% to every element of the project with respect to budget, and careful attention to detail."
- Yoshiko Kurogi, Café Petit Gâteau


  • Don't be shy to approach potential clients and pitch your business - the results can be worthwhile
  • Even on a tight budget, great things can be accomplished by putting in the work, prioritizing and making strategic choices
  • The work you have the most fun doing is usually the work that gets recognized


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