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Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Black Denim vintage logo

The vintage logo we'll be creating is based on a fictional jeans company Black Denim Co. The logo uses some of the classic design tricks from the 30' s, 40' s & 50' s to capture that old school look and is finished off with some distressed textures to represent the low-fi print techniques used by our ancestors.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Classic logos were all about the typography. They often used a mix of hand crafted scripts and bold sans-serif lettering. Browse over your collection of fonts and compare the different styles to find one that matches the 30' s, 40' s & 50' s eras of advertising and branding.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

I've selected the Lavanderia font, but I'm not too keen on the flat edges. So why not customise it? Convert the font to outlines in order to manipulate its shape, then use the Pen tool to add in an extra point on the flat edges and adjust the bezier curves.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

The difference between the customised and the original is only subtle, but it helps create a unique design that fits the style we're aiming for.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

The current font seems a little too upright compared to other old school script logos, so go to Object > Transform > Shear and add 10 to the Horizontal axis.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Use the Direct Selection tool to delete out the whole tail from the letter K, then use the Pen tool to continue the paths from the open points into a looping shape that underlines the text.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Lots of careful tweaking of points is required to perfect the shape and eliminate unwanted kinks. Keep in mind how the line would be formed with a pen nib and try and represent the difference in line thickness.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Use guides to align the loop to the rest of the logo to help it blend in and balance the design.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Use a contrasting sans-serif font to lay up the 'Denim Co' portion of the brand name. Here I'm using the Nevis font in a black rectangle. Be inspired by history and reuse tricks from old logos, such as the layout of the word Co.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Add a narrower copy of the rectangle alongside the original then move it downward a few nudges. Add an extra point on the outside edge and move it inwards with the Direct Selection tool to create a banner style shape.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Select all the objects that make up the banner and go to Object > Envelope Distort > Make with Warp. Select the Arc setting and add 10% of Vertical adjustment.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Add an old school tagline underneath the logo. "Authentic", "Original", "Purveyors of" and "Est." are classic examples. Adjust the tracking of the text to increase the spacing between the letters.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Above the logo make a copy of the letter H from the word 'The' in another script font. Delete all the points to leave just a straight line.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Rotate and place this single line to under line the logo. This shape fits much better than a custom shape drawn with the pen tool seeing as it already has matching curves.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Select the elements that have been adjusted with Warps and go to Object > Expand. Select just the Object checkbox to convert these elements back into solid shapes.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Ungroup, then select the wording from the banner portion of the logo and create a compound path. Do the same with the three elements that make up the black banner graphic.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Select the two compound paths and hit the Subtract option from the Pathfinder palette to punch out the text from the banner.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Convert any remaining text to outlines then select all the elements and Merge them together with the Pathfinder to convert the design into one single shape.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

The final logo layout has everything you could expect to see in a vintage style brand, but no vintage design would be complete without some distressed textures to create that aged and weathered effect.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Scale the logo up by a few hundred percent, so it's considerably larger than its original dimensions.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Ungroup the logo and select the main three text elements. Go to Filter > Distort & Transform > Roughen then alter the settings to around 0.5 Size, 7 Detail, Absolute and Smooth.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Next, expand their appearance under the Object menu. This will replace the crisp edges with irregular lines. Adding this effect on the smaller text would distort them too much, so it's only applied to the larger elements.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Scale the logo back down to its original size. The roughen effect is scaled down with the logo and creates a very subtle bleed effect that represents the old stamping and press printing techniques. Hat tip to Simon Walker for this cool technique.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Right click and ungroup the logo then add all the elements to a Compound Path by hitting the shortcut CMD+8 (or selecting the menu option).

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Paste in a distressed texture from my vector bumper pack and scale it to size over the logo. Right click, ungroup and create separate a compound path for the texture element.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Instead of punching out the texture from the logo, I like to Intersect the text from the texture to keep the two elements separate. To do this send the texture to the back and use the Intersect option from the Pathfinder palette. Copy the result then press CMD+Z to bring back the text. Press CMD+F to paste in the texture over the text and change its fill colour to white.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

The subtle rough edges and the vector texture file really adds to the vintage appeal of the logo and gives a fantastic hand crafted stamp effect.

Create an Aged Vintage Style Logo Design in Illustrator

Our vintage style logo looks cool on screen, but get it printed on tactile objects such as apparel, labels, tags and stationery to really bring the brand to life.

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