Brand Logos: The gift that keeps on giving! If you look at the history of logos and labels as a trend, you would think that people would have had enough by now. But creating larger-than-life brand identities and communicating them in ways that people relate with, is an integral aspect of fashion, a trait that many strive to excel and achieve for their brand.
It is also true that once you have an established name, it is one of the most self-indulgent trends and say what you may, but fashion is a frivolous-first world and we love a good personal branding trend. Thus, ever since their surge in the early 1980s, ‘logomania’ has gone in and out of fashion several times. Thanks to creatives like Alessandro Michele of Gucci, Demna Gvasalia of both Vetements and Balenciaga as well as few others, the manic logo obsession is back in full!
A fairly easy way to execute value addition, here are few themes and ideas to consider while instating the logo trend’s return in your collections. It is a trend that certainly needs to be watched carefully, because though it is just at the initial stages of picking up, when it might become a major trend is any ones guess.
HEAVY BACKING FROM THE SPORTS AND STREETWEAR MARKET
From T-shirts, hoodies and sweatshirts to dresses and jackets – there is hardly a place left on the garment where designers haven’t slapped a big fat logo. The highlight though, is to see how even the most convention-loving heritage brands are completely redoing their logo with a bit more millennial-friendly streetwear touch.
For example, Italian fashion house Fendi linked up with Fila and re-made its logo as a monogram in softer, more approachable curves. Valentino took to using the acronym VLTN instead of its full name in its latest collection, the typeface looks clean and the campaign was created on a basketball theme.
Urban fashion and sportswear in general are actually the main driving force behind the logo’s homecoming. Some might even credit cult favourite label Vetements and their DHL T-shirts to be the main source of their return to pop culture. Everyone wants a slice of the sportswear aesthetic and logos have become the direct gateway to that.
BRING BACK THE ARCHIVES
The trend is gaining quick popularity for both men and women; it is hip for both high-end and high street brands and also transcends seasons! Our team reached out to Meenakshi Patra, a designer at Pearl Global to find out what is spearheading the trend’s growth. She explained that the logo return is essentially all about going ‘back to basics’ in more ways than one.
Brands are looking to revive the ideas that made them popular in the ’80s, which was a huge period for several brands like Tommy Hilfiger, GAP and Calvin Klein. It was the time when television was the new, ‘cool’ thing and so all the artwork and graphics revolved around going big and bold. “We are taking inspiration from that iconoclasm of ’80s culture, which means a lot of retro typeface and taking in the rich design archives, kind of turning them over their head for a fresh outlook,” Patra added.
Irony seems to be a big sub-trend for the logo; several designers are redoing their logo’s typeface and even adding ironic statements that cater to specific audiences. For instance, eclectic Jeremy Scott tried to gain Middle Eastern brownie points by redesigning his logo with Persian alphabet typeface in burnt orange. Alexander Wang did a corporate irony collection where the logo mirrored a person’s initials on a credit card shortening his brand’s name to A. Wang in the process.
DOING IT FOR THE SOCIAL MEDIA POINTS
Fashion has also become very controversial as of late. Brands are directly getting involved in political matters. This is a very powerful slogan where ethical branding comes in and even the high street labels now have to tackle conversations like climate change very tactfully.
Concepts like the life of a garment and using materials that are eco-friendly and conscious of the environment are increasingly becoming an urgent norm. Balenciaga’s latest collection was not that big on its own logo but rather plastered the logo of World Food Program, and added a subtitle denoting their support to the cause. Because at the end of the day, the idea is to let people know that you are part of this cause.
There is also a sense of social media friendliness to visible logos, a big icon is sure to come up in every selfie posted on Instagram and any story that goes on Snapchat – a free marketing tool for any brand.
It may be a little early before the trend reaches full penetration for the Indian export market as few players like Rajeev Bansal of Celestial Knit & Fabs told us that their team is not looking at logos as the demand continues to surround evergreen florals and embroideries. However, there is a common cluelessness regarding what will be the next big thing after the evergreen florals and geometrics. Anshu Saxena of Mossanite Apparels, who works with clients all over Europe and UK mostly, also said that while she’s seeing the trend happening here and there, her collections are not partaking in the logo movement as the demand is quite lukewarm, as of now, but it could take a U-turn in the future.
There is a time and place for everything – the global runways all seem to be taking a sip from the logo’s life brewing elixir and it seems like a good time for the mass market to explore what it can make of the trend!