Top 5 Logo Trends of 2019

It’s July, which means we’re already over halfway through 2019 (woah). While it’s tempting to think about how fast time is flying, it also means we’re well on our way of seeing how logo design has continued to develop and modernize in 2019. Things continue to get more cutting edge, and it’s important to see what designers are doing—whether you’re a designer trying to stay on top of trends or a company making sure your logo isn’t horribly out of date. With this in mind, let’s look at the top 5 logo trends of 2019.

Responsive Logos

We’ve already talked about how important it is for your website to be responsive, but did you know that logos can be responsive too? Responsive logos are logos that vary slightly to fit the needs of what they’re being reproduced on. This makes sense when you think about it—you’ve got more room on a billboard than a flier, after all, and you want to make sure the important parts of your logo are what show up on the flier. If you have a good set of brand guidelines, you probably already have something like this set up. However, responsive logos in 2019 are getting more and more advanced. For example, check out all the different ways Coca-Cola renders their famous logo, along with some other iconic brands.

Responsive Logos

Image provided by Just Creative from Responsive Logos.

Geometric logos are a great way of showing how design continues to iterate on old ideas. While geometric logos have been popular for a while, designers in 2019 continue to find ways to make them feel fresh and exciting. Using a geometric design with these 2019 design trends will continue to make your brand feel innovative and new.

Geometric Logos

There’s something intrinsically modern about a logo consisting of just thin lines creating simplistic versions of icons. Simple, sleek, straight to the point, and—if done well— superb at communicating the idea of your brand. And this aesthetic isn’t even universal. Sharp, straight lines usually evoke rigidity and order, which can be great for a serious brand that needs to exude professionalism and authority. However, add a simple curve and that same line evokes whimsy. And as 2019 progresses, geometric logos start to feel a bit more organic. Even doing something as simple as incorporating color into a geometric design can make it feel friendlier.

Geometric Logos

Image provided by 99designs.

Geometric logos are a great way of showing how design continues to iterate on old ideas. While geometric logos have been popular for a while, designers in 2019 continue to find ways to make them feel fresh and exciting. Using a geometric design with these 2019 design trends will continue to make your brand feel innovative and new.

Retro Logos

Speaking of iterating on old ideas, retro logos are making a comeback. This seems like the complete opposite of the last trend we were talking about—how can geometric, clean, simple designs exist alongside logos that call back to MTV and other classic logos from the 80’s and 90’s? The answer is that the design world is a big place, and these different trends answer totally different needs. Retro logos help a brand feel old school cool. And with nostalgia in full force lately in pop culture (Stranger Things, anyone?), retro logos make sense with the current cultural zeitgeist.

Retro Logos

While some retro logos definitely don’t need to come back, people have a fondness for them. There are games where you guess the companies of old logos, proving your knowledge. That indicates a fondness for this old way of design. To incorporate a retro feel into your design, look at the bright, chunky colors of retro logos. Thick borders also definitely make a logo feel more retro. More importantly, though, make sure your retro logo looks intentionally retro. You don’t want it to seem like you haven’t updated since the 80’s, or that kind of defeats the purpose of making sure you keep up with the trends.

Understanding the important part of a logo help you know what to include when shrinking it down. What elements are most recognizable? What will help a small version of your logo be recognizable? There’s a lot that’s already been discussed on this subject—there’s even a whole site dedicated to seeing how logos can be resized and become responsive. Do some research and consider whether your logo needs more responsive versions to fit into more situations. While 2019 certainly didn’t pioneer the idea of a responsive logo, time has made it more necessary than ever.

Handwritten Logos

Handwritten Logos

A good handwritten logo is a great way of communicating an authentic, even rustic feel to your customer. Logos can feel sometimes too polished and perfect, and the little bit of imperfection that comes with a handmade piece really helps. (Of course, handwritten logos have just as much care and polish put into them as other logos— it just might not feel that way.)

Some handwritten logos are still illustrative in style, it just uses a scratchy pen, creating a textured look. Others utilize a calligraphy style that’s becoming more and more popular. This second look usually looks cleaner than the textured look that some handwritten logos have, but sometimes there’s a fair amount of overlap.

Image from Canva.

Handwritten logos can look great, but it’s important to make sure they’re still clean-looking and easy to understand. You don’t want to put all that work into designing the perfect logo for your brand and then have your customer not be able to understand it. And if your penmanship is a struggle, don’t worry—the handwritten look is still achievable. Check out these tips to clean up your handwritten logos.

Understanding the important part of a logo help you know what to include when shrinking it down. What elements are most recognizable? What will help a small version of your logo be recognizable? There’s a lot that’s already been discussed on this subject—there’s even a whole site dedicated to seeing how logos can be resized and become responsive. Do some research and consider whether your logo needs more responsive versions to fit into more situations. While 2019 certainly didn’t pioneer the idea of a responsive logo, time has made it more necessary than ever.

Gradients in Logos

A badly applied gradient can quickly ruin a great design, but used well, gradients can bring fun color and life to your design. A lot of big brands have started to incorporate gradients into their logos, like Firefox and Airbnb. A great gradient can be subtle or obvious—it all depends on how you apply it. With Firefox’s logo, it adds shading and and depth, but with Airbnb, it’s a subtle effect that could easily go unnoticed. However, both enhance the designs in their own way.

Gradient Logo Example 2

However, you might still be concerned about applying a gradient. What if it simply looks dated, or you run into other problems applying the design? There are some great steps that you can take to avoid this problem. Here are a few to get you started, but remember our earlier point of responsive design. If you make sure your brand has a flat version of your logo, you’ll easily avoid problems such as bad application by having a version better suited for certain contexts.

With these trends, you’ll have a better idea of what’s going on with logos in 2019. However, make sure you keep your eyes peeled— the year’s not over yet, and as you’ve seen, design philosophies change quickly from moment to moment. What’s in one moment will be out the next.

Remembering this will also help you focus on what’s important over following trends— brand identity. You can redesign your logo to fit the trends, but without considering the core of your brand and what your customers value about it, it will never work. It’s better to have a timeless design that matches your brand then something in that will fade in the mind of your customers. While designing a logo, always remember what’s important over trends— your company and the message you’re trying to put out.

Understanding the important part of a logo help you know what to include when shrinking it down. What elements are most recognizable? What will help a small version of your logo be recognizable? There’s a lot that’s already been discussed on this subject—there’s even a whole site dedicated to seeing how logos can be resized and become responsive. Do some research and consider whether your logo needs more responsive versions to fit into more situations. While 2019 certainly didn’t pioneer the idea of a responsive logo, time has made it more necessary than ever.

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