Category Archives: Logos

Logo Love #3

According to their website ‘JD Sports is the leading retailer of branded sportswear and fashionwear.’ Which is all lovely. Personally though, I’ve never bought anything from a JD store (being a ‘sensible shoes’ kind of chap). But sure, if the need arose for me to acquire a pair of over-priced plimsolls, it’d be the first place I’d slouch in to.

JD’s brand identity is very nice though – Cool, shiny and very black. Carefullly placed third-party branding, lots of edgy, moody teenagers with fly-away hair, hoodies and flawless skin. And easily one of the best logos in the high street.

I love the simplicity of the two letters and how the graceful curve of the J initial meets the upright of the D. Perhaps the J is an echo of the shape of a running track? I dunno, but I like to think so. It is a fantastic example of ‘less is more’, how something so simple can be unique, elegant and striking all at once. For me, it embodies everything a great logo should be.

Logo love #2

I became aware of this logo a while ago, but I hadn’t a clue as to what Hilti were about. Apparently, they provide leading-edge technology to the global construction industry and employs more than 23,000 people in 120 countries. Which, now I know what Hilti does, makes the logo an even better design — and I did think it was pretty great to begin with.

I love the solidity, the construction industry chunkiness and the unapologetic lack of kerning (all the spaces are equal, even between the horizontal overlap of the L and T). The designer hasn’t tried to balance the spacing by opening out the H I L, but crucially, brought the T over to encroach the L space. It shouldn’t work, but it does. Brilliantly.

It certainly helps that there are no curved lines. By making a virtue of necessity and utilising the letterforms straight edges, what’s been created is what all good designers are after; a unique simplicity and a readable, recognisable, scaleable mark that defies trends and gives the company its brand anchor and a visual voice.

Logo love #1

Without naming names (well ok, Cafe Nero, for one), the big-brand, high street coffee shops are a mostly dull and predictable collection of dreary, uninspired identities.

And although the rest of the Costa Coffee brand never strikes me as especially outstanding, what I do really love is the logotype’s simplicity. Crucially, not so much what’s there, but what’s been left out. A perfectly spaced and balanced five letters, creating a deceptively subtle, relevant wordmark that instantly stands out.

There might well have been initial, brain-storming thoughts of perhaps turning the C into a croissant shape, or the O into some kind of birds-eye view of an espresso. And maybe the beginnings of the ‘steamy’ S had all kinds of graduations and little blends to make it more… well… steamy. But no, the end result shows admirable restraint and works both as a simple word, but also as a unique, identifiable and cool mark. And like all the very best logos (well the ones I like anyway), it’s perhaps not immediately obvious, it kind of sneaks up on you.

Less is more, indeed.