Next in our series on sharing inspiration from different aspects of design into branding is pattern. Patterns can be a quick and easy way to add a new lease of life into your brand. This post explores pattern types and different ways of incorporating pattern as part of your brand and communication.


Patterns in photography

Make a statement

Use bold and colourful patterns to make a statement. These types of patterns often give you added flexibility to play with scale, creating variety across your communication.

Keep it calm

Add visual interest and texture with muted patterns that are easy to overlay with text.

Introduce nature

From sand dunes to close-ups of leaves, patterns drawn from nature always add an extra dimension. Patterns can be literal to emphasise close ties to themes around nature and sustainability, or more abstract for a subtle reference that creates texture and interest. Colour schemes can be applied to enhance brand recognition and increase the abstraction.


Patterns in Logos


The IBM logo, created by designer Paul Rand in 1972, is probably the most famous stripy logo of all time and has remained more or less the same since then. The brand has grown and made use of other patterns that are all very geometric and corporate in feel.


The Unilever logo is made up of many small icons that symbolise different aspects of the company. Icons are then pulled out onto their brand communication, rather than as a whole pattern, supported by the rest of their brand platform which features illustrations with a similar feel.


Graphic patterns and packaging inspiration

Business-to-business brands can draw a great deal of inspiration from packaging design, particularly their combinations of colour and graphics. Consumer brands often create a more extended brand platform that needs to work in many many different ways – something B2B can emulate. These examples could inspire you to create a brand extension with a twist for seasonal updates, or ideas for eye-catching covers and social media banners.

Left: Nordstrom seasonal packaging; Right: packaging for Pure’s coffee beans

Left: Nordstrom seasonal packaging; Right: packaging for Pure’s coffee beans


Pattern as a design tool is so flexible and versatile and completely controllable in terms of how much of it you apply to a design and the colours you use. It extends really successfully to items like merchandise and location branding as well. This all makes it well worth exploring how pattern can be a component of your brand platform. Talk to us, if you would like to know more!