In last month’s post “A brand is born—wait, aren’t they made?” we promised we would illustrate our proposals for a new naming and the subsequent steps of designing a logotype and devising a tag line, charting our course through a differentiation process until a decision is reached by the client.
A few steps further
Essentially we are dealing with promotional clothing. What our client’s company does is to customize and supply a number of articles of clothing as need be. Upon our first meeting we were favourably impressed by the countless customization possibilities they showed us. Their offer isn’t confined to the ordinary placement of patches, designs or text on the front or the back—crest prints, locker tags, full back and so on. They really can meet all sorts of different requirements: in a word, their customized clothing is as customized as it can ever get.
Now released from the obligation to preserve a connection with the family name we move on to cope with other requirements:
- we should expand on the previously suggested naming proposal, i.e. FRONT BACK followed by the tag line AND ALL THAT YOU WANT
- preferably, we ought to choose an Italian tag line—and one suitable to make their line of business clear
- we should not include any reference to such words as “promotional”
Four variations of our FRONT-BACK logotype
In view of the above we came up with a first draft lettering envisaging the use of two different fonts, a blocky and a rounded one, the former all in capital letters, the latter in lowercase, thus creating a two-level effect, where each word lies on a separate plane, one being in the foreground and the other in the background. Beneath them, an invisible wavy line meant to evoke the way cloth being woven moves in a loom. Finally, a tag line to illustrate their line of business—a commitment to supply products in line with the latest trends of fashion.
The second lettering was intended to bring out the comparative mirror-like similarity between the letters R and K: the two inner lines suggest two arrows facing in opposite directions to convey the wide-ranging extent of possible customization.
In the third proposal we reworked a font, shaping curves and straight lines in order to create a sort of mirroring effect: we wanted the two words to appear somewhat opposed and yet part of a single unit. Here we chose not to add any pictogram except for two tiny coloured squares, almost like two stitches sawn onto some fabric, mean to evoke their two scopes as encapsulated in the tag line.
In the last example words are placed on different levels: FRONT is in the foreground, overlaying BACK which remains in the background. They thus recall the interplay between alternating planes and dimensions to illustrate how customized clothing usually deals with aspects concerning size and positioning.
Selection and restart
The fourth proposal was particularly appreciated insofar as it was regarded as strong, effective, very likely to appeal to people who aren’t just looking for quality products but who also demand relentless innovation as to materials and design—people to whom outward appearance is less relevant than content. However, they would like us to put forward additional proposals. Evidently they are beginning to enjoy this… better still, they are becoming increasingly aware of a fact: designing a well-defined satisfactory business identity is far from a quick and easy job.
Cheer up then, and back to the drawing board. We start by looking for an alternative tag line for FRONT-BACK. Subsequently we design a somewhat louder logotype using bright colours, always related to space on the embroidered side, still with a front side and a back side. Here “Q” stands for the high quality of materials and yarns; on that note, we reshaped the letter into a pictogram representing the eye holes where yarns are passed in embroidery machines.
One day, as we were chatting with our clients, someone brought up “identity” as a possible and interesting keyword. Our client’s company acts as supplier of comprehensive kits; also, they are expected to add dare wearability to single brand identities. This aspect suggested a pun on the concept of an IDENTI-KIT, which in turn led us to think of IDENTIFILL, with the verb TO FILL replacing KIT in order to convey the idea of how filling up spaces is the way logotypes are created.
During the very same meeting our clients also summarized for us their history. We were impressed by the notion of a small to medium-sized business fit to tackle the competition of far larger companies, and this in the highly demanding fashion industry , characterized by exacting standards even when it comes to promotional initiatives.
The Biblical account of David and Goliath immediately suggested itself. We came up first with a tag line influenced by David’s sling: il brand che colpisce. A free rendering might be “a striking brand”. Unfortunately, Internet domains related to the term “sling” were unavailable, so we moved from SLING to CATAPULT, a catapult being an alternative name for a similar contraption (in British English, anyway! Americans usually call it a slingshot) ; then we thought of KATAPULT with a K, maybe even KATAPUNT, or possibly KATAPOINT (punto being Italian for “dot” as well as “point”). This in turn led us to reverse the P—that’s our catapult ready to shoot. For projectiles, brightly coloured Os… it is going to be a hit!
In the end, this was the version our clients approved. So if you are determined to become a high achiever and see your brand thrive we recommend you choose KATAPOINT—it points at you.