A Peek Inside My Signature Logo Design Process

November 14, 2017

One question I’ve been getting frequently over the past few months is all about my logo design process. How do I design logos? What type of process do I walk through to create unique designs for each client? Is each logo designed with pretty details in mind, or is there more significance behind each element? Well, friend, today I’m spilling all the beans and letting you take an inside look at just how I create timeless, elevated logos to serve as the face of my clients’ brands time and time again! Keep on scrolling for the full scoop.

A step-by-step look at my signature logo design process | how to design a thoughtful logo via b is for bonnie design | photo by Hannah Haston Photography

Before I even start thinking about color palettes or dreaming up unique symbols to incorporate in a primary logo, I start by identifying my client’s goals for their brand, as well as for their logo. In order to make truly thoughtful design decisions, I believe understanding how my clients want to be perceived in the industry, who they want to reach, the experience that they offer their clients, and so much more are crucial parts of the process! We start every branding project with an hour-long initial brand development session where we dive deep into the heart behind their brand, as well as their unique brand goals, to then move into the design process with a clear understanding of what we’re trying to accomplish in the long run.

While I’m gathering a clear understanding of their brand goals, I also explore exactly who their ideal client is so we can design with that specific audience in mind. Strong logos aren’t composed of just pretty colors or unique design elements — they’re strategically designed to tell your story in such a way that resonates deeply with your ideal client, inspiring them to take action and book with you! So in order to make that happen, I spend hours with my clients exploring just who they long to serve so we can pull in the colors, font pairings, symbols, and more that speak directly to these dreamy clients.

With a clear understanding of my sweet client’s ideal client in mind, then I dive into some visual inspiration, specifically through color. I take my time thoughtfully honing the most strategic colors that will not only reflect my client’s brand goals, but will also capture the attention of their ideal client right off the bat. (If you want to check out more of how I choose the most strategic color palettes, this post is just for you!). After I narrow down the most strategic colors for a cohesive palette, I’ll present that visual inspiration to my client for approval before I continue to sketch logo concepts.

Every visual element I incorporate into a primary logo design has to have a specific purpose and a deep meaning in order for it to make the cut. In order to build a visual brand that’s made to endure, I believe that pretty just for pretty’s sake won’t serve my clients in the long run. Instead, pulling in visual elements that hold a deeper meaning or represent more of the heart behind their brand ensures we can create a symbol, or other visual element, that will last.

For example, when I was designing the logo for my sweet client Cori Cook Floral Design, I didn’t want to pull in florals for her main logo symbol that she didn’t actually use as part of her design process. Through in-depth conversations, I learned that climbing roses have always meant a great deal to her personally, and she strives to include roses in many of her designs when that aligns with her brides’ vision! So what better flower to highlight as part of this symbol that a rose? My hope is that small detail continues to endear this logo and that custom symbol to Cori for years to come, all while inspiring connection with the high-end brides she loves to serve!

But beautiful sketches and thoughtful symbols alone will only go so far. Which is where intentional font pairings come into play! I’ll carefully select the best font pairings that will not only reflect my client’s brand personality and aesthetic, but will also appeal to their ideal client. (For more tips on choosing the best fonts for your brand, head over here). Every font has its own personality and gives off a very specific vibe, so it’s a powerful way to inspire trust, tell a story, and invite potential clients to connect with your brand.

After all of that in-depth research, I’ll sketch out dozens and dozens of ideas before I go to design in Illustrator. I want to have a clear idea of how a logo concept can come together before I start designing on my computer, and I can’t tell you how many scraps of paper I have on my desk at any given point in time! The logos that I design serve as a primary touchpoint connecting my clients with their ideal clients, so I know each design needs to be unique, authentic, and designed to endure. And I don’t take that opportunity lightly! I refine (and refine, and refine…) because I want my clients to choose from only the best options out there. Which leads me to the final step in the logo design process — presenting the finished concept!

Once I’m confident that I’ve created a logo concept that can truly serve my client well, I’ll submit up to three unique designs for them to review. From there, we have the option to refine an individual logo until it’s perfect, although I’ve found that few edits are needed before we hone in on the ideal logo for their brand. All that refining and in-depth strategy before we start sketching truly pays off!

If this thoughtful logo design process sounds like just the steps you want to take to craft an elevated visual brand that reflects the heart of your life’s work, then let’s chat. It would be a true joy to design something unique and filled with intention just for you!

If you’re a designer curious to learn more about my signature brand strategy approach, then tune into my totally free Netflix-style training: “How to Triple your Income as a Designer without Taking on More Branding Clients”.

In this webinar you’re going to learn:

  • The #1 secret to dramatically increase your income without working crazy hours or taking on hundreds of clients.
  • How to transform your client education process in order to maximize results and minimize busy work
  • And the key to getting out in front of your dream branding clients without hustling to be seen.

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My name is Bonnie – I’m a brand designer, strategist, and writer which all adds up to one eclectic conglomeration of qualities that enables me to serve you well! Past clients have dubbed me "the Joanna Gaines of brand design," and I've had more than a few call me a dream maker, a game changer, and a design wizard (my Harry Potter-loving heart didn't hate that one, let me tell you!). At the end of the day, I'm a big-hearted creative who will get teary-eyed as you share the heart behind your business; who will lose sleep over the perfect font pairings and color selections to bring your brand to life visually; and who will work tirelessly to empower, encourage, and equip you to share your work with the world intentionally. 

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