British fashion designer Alexander McQueen got his start as a designer at Givenchy, but he later achieved international fame when he founded his own label in 1992. The luxury fashion house quickly became known for their over the top and occasionally controversial fashion statements.
This unique brand needed an unusual logo to fit their off-kilter aesthetic, so the signature Alexander McQueen logo was created to stand out. In this article, we will take a look at how the Alexander McQueen logo was designed and learn a little more about the history behind this simple yet unique logo.
Alexander McQueen Logo Design Elements
Alexander McQueen’s logo is a wordmark which means that the logo is just the name of the brand written in a special design. It uses a black text on a white background that matches almost anything the brand creates. The font used for this logo is the classic Baskerville font that has been around since the 1750s. Baskerville has crisp edges with curved serifs and elegant lines, so it helps to give a hint of tradition and respectability to a rather young and bold brand.
The first part of the logo, “Alexander,” is placed in a horizontal line atop the second half, “McQueen.” To make the two lines the same width, the top line is written in slightly smaller text. Alexander McQueen keeps their logo from looking too simple by placing the C in “McQueen” inside the hollow middle of the Q instead of being placed in its proper position.
Changes and Evolution
Though Alexander McQueen has always used the same design elements, they have been shifted around quite a lot over the years. At first, the logo was normally depicted as a single horizontal line that contained both the “Alexander” and the “McQueen” portions. This was then changed to a version that had “Alexander” in very small letters on top of “McQueen” in very large letters. The letter-insider a letter motif was emphasized even more heavily when the logo changed to feature the basic logo in small letters beneath a giant Q that contained a “Mc.”
Alexander McQueen almost always displays their logo as black text on a white background. Unlike many other brands, the logo coloring does not change to suit design schemes. The only time the logo color changes is when it shows up as a white text on a black background.
Alexander McQueen’s font has been almost as consistent as their color choices. Other than a brief, unpopular experiment with a sans serif font in a few print ads, the company has always used their classic, curling, serif font.
The Alexander McQueen logo actually bears many similarities to other famous fashion brands. Simple black text that contains the fashion house’s name on a white background is used in most luxury fashion labels, including Valentino, Dior, Prada, and Balenciaga. McQueen may have been particularly influenced by the Givenchy logo that was used by his previous employer.
However, the logo stands out because it is not just a simple wordmark or an elaborate image. The choice to move the C inside of the Q was an inspired decision that allows more visual interest. This design move was intended to have a bold, graphic effect, and it definitely makes the Alexander McQueen logo more memorable.
- Alexander McQueen’s full name is actually Lee Alexander McQueen. When he was just getting started, fashion editor Isabella Blow suggested he go by his middle name because it sounded more distinguished.
- Since McQueen’s death in 2010, the fashion house has stopped creating themed collections.
- The Alexander McQueen logo has been attached to many unique and controversial pieces, including luggage shaped like human ribcages and a skirt decorated with tampons.
Just like his fashion, the Alexander McQueen logo is a fresh take on a traditional fashion house logo. The clean black and white wordmark may bear some superficial similarities to other famous companies, but the unusual letter placement adds more visual interest. It manages to look like a work of art while still being straightforward enough to appeal to those outside the fashion world.