Stuff designers like

For years, a satirical blog has been chronicling the discerning tastes of a certain group of folks for the benefit of all folks. For what it's worth, I thought I'd compile a list to help better define the likes of that elusive but highly regarded group of typographically-inclined visual communicators—designers.

#1 The New Starbucks Logo

Think what you want about their coffee; Starbucks certainly did a number on its identity. The new logo, timed with Starbucks' 40th anniversary, has set the design world abuzz with mostly positive reviews. It's definitely a rare feat for the likes of a Brand New post. Designers may pretend to ignore Starbucks, but they are bound to be drawn in by this update, a clever homage to mythology with an eye to the future of the company. Losing that clunky band around the symbol has allowed the Siren to become freer, fresher, and more seductive—something to which designers can relate.

#2 Horn-Rimmed Glasses

Designers like things classic, and their optometric choices are no exception. Why settle for a pair of boring frames selected from a one-hour shop when you could channel the likes of Harold Lloyd or Buddy Holly? Horn-rims are just the right mix of geekiness and sensuality for showing up at the office or a night out in Silverlake. Sure, these particular frames might blur the line between designer and hipster, but hey, there's a little bit of hipster in all of us.

#3 All Things Apple

Once designmaking moved from T-squares, rubber cement, Letraset, and Zipatone, designers became the original Mac fanboys (and fangirls). Long before the iPod made Apple mainstream, designers slogged through pre-OS 10 Mac systems with layerless Photoshop files. By the early 1990s, "designers" became synonymous with "Mac users," and the PC was all but forgotten. These days, the appealing minimalism of Apple is the only thing outside of vintage PANTONE® posters and letterpress wedding cards that gets designers really excited.

For a bit of fun, check out some vintage graphic design and art tools at Drawger.

#4 Gradients

Some designers enjoy railing against other designers for using gradients in identity work, in such public arenas as the Brand New comments section. But deep down, even these designers like gradients, perhaps as a guilty pleasure. After all, what better way to freshen up a logo than with a beautiful, smooth transition from color to color? There's a reason why gradients have become so popular a technique in this age of dynamic, dimensionalized logos.

Miles Seiden is a designer for the Siegel+Gale Los Angeles office.

1 comment(s)

  1. Sometimes I feel like these are requirements for the design industry, not always a bad thing. The thing is I can’t stand coffee (look, taste, smell—gag me please,) I wear glasses but not “horn-rimmed”, and I don’t think I have used a gradient since high school.

    While I find this posting very interesting, I just wonder if since I don’t fit the stereotype how does one know I am a designer?

    ps. I think turtlenecks should be #5 on this list.

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