Saturday, 22 March 2014


I felt the first element to work on and develop was the logo as this is the key, recognisable element of the brand which its target audience will recognise and remember. A logo also allows an association of colour, status, costs, products and identity. A logo is also the focal point of a brand which allows personification of the products and concept. It is important time is spent studying existing logos for trends and differences which are already recognisable and in use throughout the world. I carried out secondary research into luxury logos initially to gain a sense of background. I found that most of the logos for luxury clothing lines use Sans Serif typefaces along with black as one of the 'primary' colours, along with metallic printed/foiled gold or a solid alternative.

Initially I wanted to use gold, but the more research I did the more I found it predictable and find myself currently dissuaded to use it unless it is in a subtle, unusual way. Fitting with the concept and background information given with the brief however, monochrome will feature as the main colour scheme, and any additional print finishes will be decided later on in the development of the brief.

I first began looking at existing typefaces which I felt were 'luxurious' or similar to those found in my research. For example, the first typeface is similar to that of Hermes, whilst the second down is similar to the Sans Serif used for Chanel. I found this process useful in terms of allowing to delete typeface styles I didn't like or feel were appropriate to the brief. MONO is set to be structural and functional in terms of aesthetics and concept, giving an empowering statement piece to the wearer of the clothes. I deleted typefaces which were overpowering, very similar to existing luxury brands, as a difference is needed, and removed those which wouldn't work at different scales.

Below shows the cut down version of typefaces as well as a custom typeface (3rd one down). This was inspired by the Hermes logo and similar typeface shown, however with more structure and form. I also wanted to use a sans serif typeface opposed to a serif, to show the simple sleekness and structural side of the clothing line, as well as keeping the logo recognisable and luxurious.

I further narrowed the typefaces down to two in particular I liked and felt were most fitting to the brand and the luxury, classy side of it also. I felt they were also minimal and smart, using basic structural forms and shapes. The top typeface is CODE, whilst the second down is BODONI. Bodoni is the typeface which Vogue uses for its logo, and felt this could be too similar and possibly seen as unoriginal. I felt Code was much sleeker also and would work better at reduced and enlarged scales much better due to being a Sans Serif typeface.

At this point I began developing ideas using these typefaces to see potential variations which can be achieved. I wanted to ensure the background and concept was reflected through the logo as well as the brand itself. Variations can be seen below.

1 added to resemble being the one brand to wear. This was also emphasised with the vertical type.

I also experimented on different backgrounds/monochromatic schemes to gain a further variation and idea of the logo. At this point I didn't feel happy with any of the logos which had been initially developed. I went back to the drawing board and began sketching out further ideas of more innovative and less straight forward approaches. Initially I wanted the logo to simple like those existing, but for the brand to stand out and have it's own identity I feel it is better to draw my own type for the logo and create an entirely different style of logo to those out there in the luxury market, whilst ensuring the right tone of voice is still reflected.

I began using shapes and experimenting with the placement of glyphs and their 'connection' to one another. This is shown above and on the sheets scanned in below. I began experimenting more with connecting all of the letters and using one line to draw all of the letters. Using the letter 'M' proved difficult initially to link smoothly to 'O' but after lots of sketches and attempts it began to look more like a viable logo idea.

Above: more sketches showing the use of one line and connections between glyphs.

I then began looking into different digitised versions of the sketches I had drawn up. These variations can be seen below, with visible developments.

I liked the bottom logo however on second glance reminded me of a railway line, and decided it wasn't really appropriate for this brief. Below, with custom type MONO was drawn up using one line. I felt the idea was good showing connection and fluidity whilst being simple and modern, however thought overall it was too founded and should be more sharp and linear. This would add extra luxury and class to the logo whilst showing structure and form. At the minute it looks a bit messy and needs to be tightened and sharpened up. I also tried this in different weights to see which would be more effective, but again at a much smaller scale on business cards etc, the logo wouldn't be very legible in either a thin or thick stroke size. 

More structural type was experimented with above, using custom type. I really like the angles used showing architectural, structured forms and shapes. Below shows an adapted version which is more angular overall in different stroke sizes and styles, as well as variations of the two. At the bottom of the page are 4 logos which I liked more than any previously drawn up. As this is custom type I was able to edit the lines easily to make different variations connect as noted previously above.

I chose the very bottom left logo to further develop. I liked the angles, and the structural forms used in the glyphs and feel this is representative of the brand and is more so than any other seen so far.

I further developed the logo, removing the horizontal lines connecting the individual glyphs to connect them through the use of one line only. Below shows angular variations, kerning and different stoke sizes. 

I felt these straight variations were too sharp and represented an east to west vibe which wasn't appropriate for the brief, so I reverted back to developing the angular logo again. Below shows the development of the connection of the glyphs as well as weight variations. I felt at at an appropriate size this would be visible and recognisable whilst being different to other luxury branding. I still felt there wasn't something quite right with it still and experimented with the edges of the individual points to see if square or rounded edges would take the sharpness away from the impact of the logo. This would also add extra fluidity aesthetically and when read.

It was very difficult to achieve different variations of the logo with rounded edges at first due to the unusual angle of the 'M', however the very bottom logo is by far the best logo which has been seen throughout this development post. I love the smoothness of the connection of the glyphs, as well as it's smartness, angular structure, sophistication and luxury, with accessible tone of voice. The logo was tested at different scales and is recognisable up to 40% and this would be the minimum size the logo could be used at. 

Above: Final logo design.

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