and now for something completely
When Leen & Christiaan asked me to create their identity, I started searching for the red line within their product range. To find an overall theme as a starting point for the branding, this line is of great essence. However the product range they chose to carry was too broad to speak of one clear style or direction. So there I was, stuck with no clear style or direction. When I find myself in this corner I always try to turn the downside into the upside. Meaning in this case I followed the products: just mix and match. Also Ekstur as a brandname is derived from the Dutch word ekster meaning magpie, and they are famously portrayed as collectors of all sorts of things in their nests. I found my line! Mix, match and start collecting without one specific style or theme.
The magpie as a logo was too obvious. I decided to create a new typeface for this logo, a typeface that illustrated the mix and match philosophy of Ekstur. That meant, I had to create a library of building blocks to create the Ekstur typeface.
From here the individual lettering began. Because of the limitless combinations, I soon had an army of letters to create my font with. I ended up with enough characters to make about six complete alphabets! I chose two out of these six which I than turned into one usable font. The capitals of the typecace form one of the six alphabets, another alphabet shows up when using the lowercase.
So when using the font you can switch between caps or lower case characters whenever you want. EKSTUR FLAV was born! Considering the EKSTUR FLAV is a very busy and attention seeking typeface, I was looking for a less prononciated sister to join her. The Houschka font came closest to a perfect match. So whenever long text is needed the EKSTUR FLAV will be combined with her sister Houschka. Taking in account webstores communicate through words and images it turned out to be an advantage to have a unique typeface to do so.
NOW FOR THE LOGO
To make the Ekstur logo I used all letters I had created. This resulted in multiple variations. Because of the unique character of the typeface, we can switch between different logos, while the look and feel remains the same.
Next to the font, an overal graphic language to use in the webstore and communication was key. Also hereI started rearranging the same building blocks that form the typeface, but with a line. These lines formed the basis for the my graphical language. When creating shapes with the lines the results are stamp-like forms that are easy to use and really stand out. When applying the same decorative borders to image material, these too get dipped into the Ekstur visual style. So now we have a typeface, a logo, graphical elements and imagery that all come out of the same building blocks. The result is a very visible and in-your-face visual identity that will be recognisable as Ekstur's own.
That's all folks..!