Behind the Scenes: Designing a Strong and Timeless Logo

Gift and housewares logo design

Whether you’re launching a new brand or redesigning for an existing one, a timeless logo is essential for creating a strong identity that’ll grow and propel your business for years to come. When you have to reassess and restart, this kind of work is not a step back, but rather, a huge step forward.

Samantha Leung of Handmade Sam Made came to us at a point in her business when she was ready for her visual identity to be realized to its full potential. Her line of brass geometric mobiles and wall sconces—inspired by traditional Finnish himmeli—had such a distinctly modern, minimalist style that it was easy for us to imagine her business evolving into a brand that encompassed not only an aesthetic, but a lifestyle. This would help position her brand as a leader in her industry, while also making the evolution of her product offerings, from air plants to plant-inspired enamel pins, a more seamless transition.

Sounds like a lot of big changes, right? Not necessarily. Sometimes, the true artistry of a redesign lies in knowing the difference between what to change, what to keep, and what to enhance.

hemleva-planter

Photo © Samantha Leung

hemleva-plant-pins

Photo © Samantha Leung

hemleva-wall-sconce

Photo © Samantha Leung

hemleva05

Photo © Samantha Leung

Transforming a strong brand foundation into a timeless logo design

When Samantha came to us, she’d already built an incredibly strong foundation for her brand. She was doing a stellar job of knowing what her brand’s style was, who her customer was, and her Instagram account (with its gorgeous photography) was driving much of her sales.

What was lacking were a name and logo that tied all these elements of her brand together in a way that was as beautifully cohesive as her products. The messaging, style, and vision were all there—they just needed to be brought to life. As our designer, Jess, got to work on the visual identity for the newly-named Hemleva, Arianne compared our creative approach to that of building a new “home” for it to live and thrive in:

“Samantha, I think of your work like the framing of a house. All the 2x4s and plywood are up in the shape of the house, and now it’s our job to add the design details. We might add decorative molding and beautiful windows or even a little tower, but we’re not going to tear down any of the work you did and change the configuration ‘just because.’ We definitely don’t want to change what you’ve already built, because your foundation is so strong.”

Before & after: how refining your brand sets you up for success

Hemleva before and after rebranding with Aeolidia

Hemleva before and after rebranding with Aeolidia

Sometimes a brand requires a complete makeover. Sometimes, it simply needs to have its true identity be brought out in a way that feels natural and timeless. Hemleva already had so many brand elements “playing well together” that our job was to tease them out and make them shine. Jess’s designs were meant to be ones that Sam and anyone familiar with her brand would recognize and think, “OF COURSE that’s what it should look like. That’s what’s always been there, just scratching the surface.”

This reframing and refining of a brand makes it that much stronger. We wanted to set up Hemleva to take charge of its identity with strong, iconic visuals that would make it easier for the brand to stand out as the original leader in its class. The long-term goal behind Hemleva’s timeless redesign was to convert it to greater memorability in customer’s minds, a more commanding presence in retail stores, and overall success for Hemleva that will stay true to Sam’s aesthetic for years, no matter how her product offerings evolve over time.

Gift and housewares logo design brand board Stamp/seal design

View the Hemleva project in our portfolio »

Visit the Hemleva site » (new look/name coming soon)

Do you have a strong, inspired brand that simply needs to be propelled to greatness?

Contact us about realizing its fullest potential.

About the Author

I was so happy to finally find the copywriter of our dreams, and Natalia continues to impress me with every one of her projects. She has been telling stories for years, for clients like FedEx, Reader’s Digest, and, of course, smaller, mom-and-pop (wife-and-husband, artist-and-entrepreneur) shops that are doing big things. Beautiful sentences make her want to hug them, though she's been known to read any and all printed words, from a dropped grocery list on the sidewalk to the back of an empty cereal box. Natalia's first novel, Chasing the Sun, was published in 2014.

View more articles written by Natalia >

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