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Logo Trends to Avoid

14 November 2010

Before we get started on this journey through trending, I would like to note for the sake of tranquility that no actual logos were hurt in the making of this article and no bridges were meant to be burnt. If your logo falls into one of these categories, kudos to you. I am sure you beat the bandwagon and solidly use each concept below to its fullest potential. If not, for shame! Shame!!!

The party begins after the cut.

Trend #1: Wordmarks in Circles

This particular attempt at branding reminds me of the actual branding of cattle. Visually, is certainly not the most displeasing of ideas. A solid, circular hue can be quite pleasing, especially when placed against a good base like textured French paper or even against cardboard as a stencil. Unfortunately, the concept itself is lacking. With some notable exceptions, a simple geometric background highlighting one’s typeface choice often will not communicate the concept of a company other than that they enjoy colors and circles. Similar sentiments could be made from Kindergartners.

Trend #2: Sideways Type Hugging Stacked Type

Every now and then, the general populace picks up on generalities of design without knowing why something is done. Only that everyone else is doing it and thus they should also jump on the bandwagon, but as we all know, by the time the bandwagon comes around for you to jump on, it’s already too late. Sliding in some sideways type into a wordmark is one such bandwagon that has come around as late. Avoid unless you have damn good reason for your type to be sideways.

Trend #3: Hooked Initials

This is less a trend rather than seemingly a staple of the non-designer’s logo repertoire. As if some animal instinct drives the idea of hooking two letters together to create a seamless logo that absolutely says nothing about your business except that you like shapes that fit together. Avoid, unless you are clever and using the hooked initials for something valid like “D.C. Hooks and Fishing Lures.”

Logo Trend #4: Helvetica… everywhere…

This might seem to be a poignant point for the late 90s and early 00′s, but given the now infamous Gapgate, I thought we could all use a reminder. I am not sure when it started or who out there discovered the majesty of Max Miedinger’s Helvetica once again and made it a graphic designer’s pop culture phenomenon, but the novelty of Sex, Drugs and Helvetica Bold has worn off more than some. Avoid this gorgeous typeface in your logos or face the wrath of the community of nagging fingers.

I hope this read may have given you an “Ah-ha!” moment about potential logos that you might be seeing out there and encourage you to tailor the logos you create to your client, their identity and their needs not what everyone else is doing. You owe it yourself and your client.

Much love,

Graphic Design

2 Comments to “Logo Trends to Avoid”

  1. Fucking Helvetica will forever remind me of Mr. WONGGGG. UGh!!

  2. Shoot, I just requested a logo of my name with hooked initials and “illustrations” stacked on the side all in Helvetica with a neon drop shadow all in a circle.

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