Do we like the new John Lewis logo and does it even matter?

With the new John Lewis/Waitrose visual identity being revealed, it got us talking in the studio; do we like it? What are its strengths? And finally came to one question, which is rather tricky to answer: Is a logo needed?

When discussing a rebrand or visual identity project, there are a few elements we have to keep in mind. You have to take into consideration the initial brief set, as well as the journey is client driven. The final product we see is not necessarily the final outcome the agency wanted. Also, with any visual identity, the initial backlash to the change is replaced with acceptance through time. So no doubt in six months I will like it more than I currently do.


Inspired by a 1960s diamond pattern from the brand’s past identity, these lines are incorporated within the logo. With the angle of the diamonds gone, it leaves a dated set of lines resembling a barcode pattern. We’re not a massive fan of the logo itself, but when pushing through the brand elements it’s a little more fun

These lines work so well within the rollout of the graphic identity, at least when introducing colour into it through the bags, as well as bringing in the angles/more interesting patterns through packaging. As a logo though, I would prefer something simpler for this route, even using the new typographic logo, just not housed within a box. Or even the box without the lines, as seen on the label design – it feels cleaner, less fussy.



With this all being said from my designers mind, which spends more time criticising my own work, let alone other designer’s creations, for the intended target audience, does it matter? The extended visual rollout for the brand has a life of its own, and it’s not bogged down by a lack of colour or the shape chosen for the logo. It does feel premium, and is easily flexible for every need. Is the logo really that important? If a lot of the target audience will interact/see other parts of the identity on a more regular basis.

For me, focussing on a 60’s pattern and pushing this heritage feel doesn’t exactly align with the new brand message of focusing on partners/employees of the company. Why have a design style from the past and a brand message focussing on the future? Maybe you want to have all bases covered, but to me it ends up feeling disjointed.



Below is another amazing advert from what we come to expect from John Lewis, I will blame this advert for a surge in Christmas items already being put on shelves around the country, as it definitely invokes the usual heartfelt Christmas advert feeling, with a slight Love Actually school play vibe thrown in, although, with the brand message being slapped on at the end of the video, it feels a little forced. Though it is there, within the video, just thinly represented. I guess you might not need any more than that? It’s a memorable video and sometimes that’s enough for an advert. I have no beef with the Cadbury’s gorilla.


Hope you enjoyed my ramblings. What are your thoughts? let us know via Facebook/Twitter/Raven Scroll

To view the entire project, visit Pentagram’s Website.

Write a comment