While it’s been around in some shape or form since the 70s, Streetwear has definitely been having quite a “moment” the past decade or so. Its cultural impact has been so vast that I dare say we’ve had more streetwear brands in Central Indiana over the last 5-6 years than we’ve had traditional fashion brands ie. RTW, or couture, over the last 50. (I’m just guessing, and no study was conducted to back this claim, but based on observation, and having a list of 50+ streetwear brands which are based in Indiana staring at me as we plan our 4th annual event sure seems to make the above ring true!)
In 2015, we launched STREETExPO with the goal of creating a physical event around streetwear brands and its fans. That first year 20 different brands signed up to participate and I honestly had no idea if the event would be a one-off and if there would be enough interest from brands and sponsors to keep it going…and in true PATTERN fashion, here we are getting ready to host our 4th annual tradeshow.
After last year’s event, we decided that it was time to take the event to the next level. To us that meant making it a bit broader than just streetwear, adding educational & experiential components, and inviting more artists to participate. A few meetings and discussions later, it was decided that we needed to rebrand the event to make it less focused on “street” wear, but instead to have a fun name that was more inclusive, and perhaps just a touch vague so that the event could evolve in a variety of directions over time, and its name would still make sense.
The rebranding task fell to our very talented, Graphic Design Fellow, Megan Gray. She explains her process below. Hope to see you all at SUPPLY! – polina
The foundation of the SUPPLY rebranding process was the desire to expand it. While designing everything that we wanted SUPPLY to be, I had to continuously tie back to our goal of developing everything this event would have to offer. STREETExPO was merely a tradeshow – SUPPLY is an experience. Thus, the goal of the rebrand was to distinguish this difference visually. SUPPLY has not only clothing vendors, but also lifestyle products, educational speakers, live demos, art installations – it’s a place to (comfortably) get lost. How do I say this with only imagery?
The design process followed the generic steps of every branding strategy. I began by making multiple moodboards that could be used as guidelines for branding future elements. When proposing all of the styles to the team, it was a unanimous decision to follow the mood titled ‘Album Cover.’ The images and colors of this mood-board encapsulated everything that we wanted SUPPLY to be — an urban feel that caught the eye, teased curiosities, and extended beyond clothing.
From there, the moodboard became a base for everything that was to come. While designing other elements, I wanted to mimic the look of ‘a lot going on’ (for lack of a better term). This mechanism followed the usual elements of urban design, as well as paralleled the reality of life in the city. I wanted everything to be clean and legible, however, I also wanted the colors and graphics to bring the brand to life and to visually capture the “experience” aspect that we wanted to convey.
Most elements came to be just from playing around with different design software. I made every image hyper-cropped, unsaturated and texturized. I included imperfect shapes that had no set structure. I bounced between outlining headlines, to outlining images, to outlining the shapes. I kept consistency with all of these elements intertwined. You would think this overcrowding of components would be a mess, but it’s not. It’s everything a city is: overwhelming, crowded, worn. Yet, at the same time, an exciting place to explore, a place to get lost and discover new things. Ahem, *SUPPLY brand goal alert*
We wanted the SUPPLY brand to be relatable to the market of vendors and attendees that participate. This new brand identity functions as a visual explanation of what SUPPLY is. We want people to spend the day at this event and fully absorb everything it offers (if that’s even possible). We hope this new look and feel radiates our intention of hosting an event that’s a tradeshow, and also so much more1
We hope these urban design elements will get you lost in the experience.