Hat Club Brand Pt. 2

Where to start with all this stuff? Lets start with the Hat Club key logo. Part of our new relationship with Hat Club was to create a new logo to represent the new hats we’d be designing. We wanted to find an icon that represented the new direction the Hat Club wanted to take their brand. Something fun and compelling. But simple that would look good on signage and embroidered small on the back of a hat or in a tag.

Hat Club has an large membership program and they knew they wanted to expand the benefits of being in the Club. So we tried to think of one icon that we could use to represent what we wanted this new relaunched Club to be. We decided a “Key to the Club” would best describe the idea of exclusivity and access. With that in mind we set out to make a key that felt fun and unique. (I threw in an early concept that we came up with of a “hat monster” just for fun. It hit the cutting room floor early but I still like the idea, but not for this project.)

That led us to the “HC” hidden in the key. It’s subtle, I haven’t’ seen anyone point it our in the comments, but we liked that the people who knew would be in the know.

We also knew we didn’t want to throw a logo on a hat at expect people to be into it. We wanted something that we could build a whole story around. So we came up with a bunch of ideas for how to infuse the key into different hat designs. We came up with the Bowery Bulldogs concept, the Lion-headed knocker and even a few others that I’ll get into tomorrow.

This was the first round after we took the concept into Illustrator. You can see that the key in this version is a little too stubby and the “HC” is not proportional nor is the key very well proportioned. This round helped us come up with the idea of the 2 toned key. That would allow for more color options on the back embroidery of each hat, an important part of it’s everyday usage.

This set features the refined key and different options for how to encapsulate it. We really liked a few of these but when we started mocking them up on different hat designs it became clear that the straight-up key on it’s own had the biggest impact and felt the most unique.

Tomorrow, sketches, sketches, and more sketches!!!


7 thoughts on “Hat Club Brand Pt. 2

  1. Very nice, and VERY clever. I think I missed the “HC” in the key before because the “H” can also be read as an “X”. That being said, it is still awesome, and I am a big fan of hidden elements in logos. I think they make the marks dynamic and give them a longer shelf life since it takes a while for people to notice them. I love the door knocker and the bulldog with the little bowler hat.

    When you sketch for something like this, is the quantity of sketches driven by you, or are they reactions to the client looking to see more concepts? Since this is a collaboration between you and HC, I’m guessing these sketches are all driven by your own initiative.

    LOVE IT! Thanks for sharing with us.

    • Kevin! Yeah, we had a lot of free reign. With the Bulldog concept we wanted to find animals and stories that had a classic appeal and bulldogs are always a favorite.

  2. The key logo happened to be my favorite element of the collection. I did happen to notice the HC, and when I did, I became a bigger fan of the releases just due to its slick and stealthy implement. I always enjoy reading about the process and seeing all these sketches. It’s inspiring!

  3. Oh now I remember this from way back when you sneak peeked the key and nobody had any idea what it was for!?…

    Since it’s release I too was thinking what the heck does a key have to do with hats? (so thanks for the explanation) however, that is exactly what made me see the “HC” because I took that second look at it.

    Such a clean and classic logo, great job guys!
    Can’t wait for the rest of the sketches.

    ps. the hat monster rules! 😉

  4. You guys included two of my favorites of the group. I picked up on the HC the first time i saw the key logo and thought it was great. I absolutely love what you guys did for this collection .. i bought 12 of them. very dope.

    p.s. – i need you guys to do that hat monster LOL

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