Predictions: 2016 Logo Design Trends

I wanted to document what I anticipate as the top six logo design trends for 2016. There are few new design firms out there predicting some trends that I feel are either inaccurate or too amateur in thought.

1.) The Ombre Gradient Approach:
One of the trends I see is ditching the traditional gradient approach to color used in the past, in leui of a new color trend treatment. Utilizing a horizontal shading from left to right, or vice versa, to create more of an ombre fade and transition.

See recent logo design we created recently for a client below:

ombre logo design
Example of new gradient ombre treatment trend for a logo design.

2.) Geometric Infographics
I see geometric, linear graphics being utilized more in logo design and branding. It appears to reflect the world around us with its open, modern lines, as seen in the latest architecture and home designs. It’s a bolder and more forward interpretation on the image depicted.

See recent logo design comp below for a recent client:

3.) Hand-Lettering
I remember learning calligraphy in my early teens. I recall sketching numbers by hand in English honors class in high-school. It’s been refreshing to see that resurgence of custom, hand-lettered type within the last year or so. I can see bigger brands like motor companies and the food industry utilizing that type of custom feel to convey a warmer, personal feel.

See recent logo design comp below for a recent bar:


4.) Metallics on Black

I’ve been psychotically obsessed with rose gold and bright metallic golds on black fabrics and matte paper. I’ve witnessed this growing design trend on business cards and other materials. I anticipate this high-contrast, rich treatment to flood into the fashion realm, site design and packaging.

See various photos below I’ve snapped while out and about:

gold on black logo design
Metallic gold popping off rich black packaging.
gold logo
Rose gold logo design on tshirt via pinterest.
gold logo on black packaging

Gold metallic on bags seen at department store.

gold business card

The MOO Blog | Spotlight: Tangram Studio loves our Gold Foil | MOO (United States)

5.) Vintage

The vintage approach has been here for a few years. We see the downtown hipsters strutting their classic Metallica shirt. We see Miller Light and Budweiser trying to cash in on that vintage feel with throwback beer can designs to target a younger market. The ode to an era, that was pure and simple will reign with logo designs for some time.

See Miller Lite’s vintage shirt-inspired design inspired by our friends at Fine Southern Gentlemen in East Austin:

vintage shirt beer
example of vintage beer shirt from Fine Southern Gentlemen in Austin, tx

6.) Pantone Black
I forsee the use of a deep, rich use of blacks in logo design. I see us ditching neutral grays and going towards the end of the spectrum for more impact. I see the use of black against brighter whites for a modern and classic feel, all in one.

black pantone

Finding Retro & Vintage Logo Inspiration in Austin, TX

I consider myself extremely lucky to live in such a vivacious, edgy city as Austin, Tx. – A city where its normal to be riding a unicycle while flaunting a hundred tattoos and piercings; normal to jog the greenbelt with blue hair pushing a stroller with a chihuahua nestled inside; and normal to have a minimum of 50 different beers on tap at any number of local eateries.

But one of the most fascinating and stimulating visuals this city has to offer myself, is it’s consistent ability to stay on the latest branding trends with its wide array of typography displays.

Vintage and retro logos are, have been and may well always be on trend. They offer versatile elements you can split up to design various promotional materials (growlers, t-shirts, stickers, menu design and more).

I’ve attached a few samples of snapshots I’ve taken around my time in Austin, that I keep in my “logo inspiration bank”:


The formula is quite simple:
1.) FONT: Find and tweak or tailor a unique vintage, hand-written font.
2.) ELEMENTS: Any small graphics to center the name are vital. Stars, scrolls, ribbons, swirls, shapes of Texas/states, etc are crucial.
3.) COLOR: I find a black color, coupled with a rusted gold or white color – scream vintage.
4.) SHAPE: Adding a logo version that can be housed in a nice circle offers a nice label affect.

Here are a few vintage/retro logo designs we have completed and/or proposed for our beloved clients.

retro logo
vintage logo

retro logo 2
square peg logo
vintage logo
blue chip motors logo

old looking logo
white label logo

Beer logo
vintage beer logo

retro logo 9
vintage logo 9

vintage logo 10
retro logo 10


Keep your eyes open around your city. Vintage typographic inspiration comes in all forms. All cities have old rusted, metal signs that utilized unique font treatments. What treatment can you apply to your next design?