How to Create a Color Palette for Your Business | #MoreThanALogo Series

Color is by far one of the most important (& fun!) parts of branding a business. Before your potential customer can read copy or even see your logo clearly, the color will stand out to catch their attention. The right color palette is a key piece in your brand's overall aesthetic, and when done right it can help you to create a strong brand image while attracting more of your ideal customers. 

I love creating color palettes for my clients, so in today's video (part 2 of my #MoreThanALogo series) I'm breaking down everything you need to know about the topic. After watching the video & reading through this post you'll be able to skillfully craft the perfect color palette for your own business or brand. 

create the perfect color palette for your brand | Reux Design Co.

Make sure you've seen the first video in this series before you watch this one!

You can watch the video here or head over to my channel to view it. & below I've broken down everything I talk about in the video plus some extra info that I wasn't able to cover! 

PS — Subscribe to my channel (it's free) to get a first look at the videos in this series AND tons of other creative + branding content

Whew! That was a ton of info! I hope you're excited about putting together your own color palette that's perfectly aligned to help your brand grow & grow. If you missed anything or want to reference the info I talked about, it's all below for you. AND make sure you sign up to receive the FREE #MoreThanALogo ebook which will launch at the end of the series. It's an amazing bonus that I put together for you to take everything I've said thus far & actually implement it into your business. 

3 main color combos

Complementary | Two colors that are opposite from each other on the color wheel ie. blue & orange or yellow & purple. This combo is super vibrant & keeps the viewers eye moving, because of the contrast. This palette is great for brands that want something bright or eye catching.

Analogous | Colors that are next to each other on the color wheel ie. red, pink & orange. For any color "family" like this palette, the result will be much more muted, harmonious, & blended feeling. Great if your brand is more friendly, inviting, or cozy feeling.

Triadic | Like you might guess, this one involves a triangle. Triadic palettes consist of three main colors that are equally spaced apart of the color wheel, forming a triangle. Primary colors (blue, red and yellow) are a triadic palette. These are often super bright and fun, with a lot of visual interest because of the variety of colors. Often, it's a good idea to soften or mute one or two of the colors so the 3 aren't competing as much. 

Color psychology

Red: A dynamic & passionate color. Symbolizes a strong feeling, whether it's love or anger. Red is often the most attention grabbing color. It also increases appetite & heart rate, so it's widely used in industries like fast food.

Orange: A combo of red & yellow, so orange is a very active color. It immediately makes viewers react & has a sense of excitement and happiness from the yellow. It's often thought to feel very positive, uplifting and rejuvenating.

Yellow: The color of happiness! It's the most visible to the human eye and often represents the shining sun, laughter and creativity. It's a very energetic color which tends to increase mental awareness.

Green: With strong ties to nature, it's no wonder that green gives feelings of stability, grounding & earthy vibes. It's the color of money which can represent structure and freedom, but it has a very balancing and calming effect on viewers.

Blue: This color can represent serenity as well as knowledge. Blue is the color of the sea and the sky, so often it's thought to be relaxing, bringing a deep peace and calm. But it's also associated with intelligence. Blue is thought o provoke mental clarity and productivity. 

Purple: Combining the stability of blue with the energy of red. Purple is often a color of power, luxury and royalty. It represents a deep, rich feeling of "more is more." But it can also have a more playful, mystical, creative side depending on the shade. 

creating your color palette

Now that you have a base knowledge of colors & how they work together, it's time to pull together your color palette! It will take you a few hours at most, and it's a simple 4 step process. 

01. Gather inspiration image | This is such a fun step! Set up a secret board on Pinterest and start saving any and every image that you feel vibes with your brand. Keep in mind your brand's "buzz words" which should describe your core mission & values, as well as your target audience. Save save save!

02. Par down your inspo | Now it's time to start organizing. In Photoshop (or Pinterest) start culling through your images and look for repeated colors, elements, feelings. From there try and pare it down to a solid 6-9 images that really represent your brand. Keep in mind that you want every image to stay within the cohesive color story that you're starting to see. Don't add a photo of a red couch if all of your other inspo is black, white & blue. 

03. Pick out colors | Using the eyedropper in Photoshop, start pulling our colors that you like. Create a palette of 5-6 colors and just keep toggling with it until you like how it looks! Now is a great time to use Adobe Kuler if you need some extra help putting together the palette or just some inspiration for color combinations. 

04. Finalize! | Once you like the look of the colors you've found, add in some grounding neutrals & finalize the palette! Remember, neutrals can be either bright, crisp, blue-toned for a more modern, fresh feel. OR nude, soft and red-toned for an inviting, cozy feel. Do what's best for your brand. 


That's it! You have your color palette. My top piece of advice now is to STICK WITH IT. Don't add random colors to your blog graphics, collages, emails or promotional images. Continuously use these specific colors over and over. With time they'll be recognizable as part of your brand, and ultimately help you better tell your story & attract those ideal customers. 

What road-blocks to do have when trying to choose your color palette? What's your favorite part of the process? Leave a comment below!

Why You Need a Full Brand for Your Business | #MoreThanALogo Series

Have you heard of the brand Ban.do? It's one of my favorite companies.

The beautiful agendas they create every year, their cheeky little products, the colors, their Instagram. It's all amazing. Every time I see one of their products in a photo or even in real life, I automatically know it's from Ban.do.

How did they do that? It's not because they have an amazing logo or they put their name on everything. It's because they've created an entire lifestyle & brand experience within their company.

Other companies sell similar products and use bright colors. But Ban.do stands out amongst the crowd. The key to creating a truly unique and memorable brand is thoughtfully defining every single elements of your branding, not just the logo.

If you're not a graphic designer, that might seem overwhelming. Where do you even start? What elements are necessary? How do you create a full brand identity that showcases your core beliefs & attracts the right customers?

why you need more than a logo for your business branding | small branding tips | small business | Reux Design Co.

Today, I'm sharing the first video in my new series, #MoreThanALogo. Over the course of the next month, the series will help guide you through the process of understanding WHY you need a fully developed brand & then implementing all of the components into your own business. 

Each Friday, a new video will be posted on my YouTube channel tackling one aspect of branding that you need for your business if you want to create a distinct, professional & sustainable brand. All of these topics will work together to create a full brand experience for your customers & clients. 

Each topic will be simple enough to tackle within a week, whether you want to sit down and do it all at once, or over a few day. I'll be adding small tips & guidelines throughout the videos to give you a step-by-step process for how to implement each different topic so you never feel overwhelmed or confused about what to do next. 

#MoreThanALogo Week One | WHY You Need A Full Brand

Many times, I get emails, inquiries & comments from potential customers who ask "I love your work but I'm just getting started. Can you just design a logo?" or "I'm not sure I want to invest in a full brand right now, how much for just the logo?" Most of the time they're a little caught off guard when I write back saying, I'm sorry, I can't do that. 

While there are many designers in the world who WILL design in this way, it's not something I believe in, therefore I can't recommend it to potential clients. At Reux Design Co. I only want to work with brands and entrepreneurs who are truly following their passions and heart, so it makes sense that I should hold myself accountable to the same standards right? 

So why won't I design just a logo? Because I know it won't serve you and your business in the long run. As a designer, my goal is not to create something purely beautiful for you. It's to dig deep, do the research and create a full brand that will be an invaluable tool in growing your business. A well developed brand will help you attract the right customers/readers, establish a loyal community of fans & make more money while pursuing something you're passionate about. Quite simply, a logo alone cannot do that. 

So, if you're at a place where you want to truly take your business to the next level, and create a visual identity that will be able to grow with you over time, you need a full brand. And that's what I talked about more in this week's video. 

PS — make sure you're subscribed to my YouTube channel so you can see every video in this series as soon as it's live on Friday mornings! It's free. ;)

Throughout the video, I talked through the 4 main reasons why I know that you need more than a logo. I also gave some hints to the next 4 videos in this series, so if you're curious about what's coming up make sure you watch until the end! 

I can't stress enough how important it is that you understand WHY your company needs a fully developed brand. Whether you decide to work with a design or DIY everything yourself, you have to understand the strategies and thinking behind what's being created. 

I hope you're excited about this 5 week series! If you have any questions about branding for your business, you can tweet them to me. And if you're excited to take your brand to the next level OR you know some amazing entrepreneurs who would enjoy this series, make sure to share on social media with the hashtag #MoreThanALogo & (tag me @CassieDulworth so I can see!)

The Ultimate Guide to Font Pairing + My Favorite Fonts

About a month ago I came across a tea kettle on Amazon that had the most hilarious review section ever. It was a beautiful glass, minimal kettle for under $30. Why is that funny? Well contrary to the photo of the kettle with a beautiful modern font engraved on the front, in person it was engraved with Comic Sans. In the reviews, designer after designer were commenting with things like "I'm a designer who loves typography! I can't BEAR to own something engraved with Comic Sans!" Ha! To the average person, that wouldn't have mattered at all. 

the ultimate guide to pairing fonts AND my favorite fonts to use for branding | Reux Design Co.

That just goes to show how important a font choice can be. The difference between a tea kettle looking beautiful & expensive vs. like it cost $10 from any old store. The same can be said about the fonts you use for your brand/blog/business. A good (or bad) font has the ability to make a lasting impact on any potential customers. And it's definitely one of the most important decisions within your branding. 

I absolutely love typography, and as someone who looks through fonts on the daily for different projects, I've picked up a few tips + tricks over time. I also have some favorite standbys that I use not only for Reux Design Co. but for loads of personal + professional projects. So today I wanted to share with you a huge guide to my top 8 favorite fonts + my top 5 tips for choosing and pairing fonts together. Let's get started! 

favorite fonts for branding | font pairing guide | sans serif vs serif fonts | Reux Design Co.

Serif [ser-if] : noun
   a smaller line used to finish off a main stroke of a letter, as at the top and bottom of M.

Sans Serif [sanz] : noun
   a style of monotonal type without serifs.


There are two main types of fonts I'm going to be talking about today. (There are also script + decorative fonts, but we'll cover those another time.) In the image above, the first 4 are Sans Serif and the last 4 are Serif. The serif fonts basically have little "tails" on each letter, and these are generally more traditional or classic feeling. The sans serif fonts have straight ends with no "tail" and are generally more modern + fresh feeling. 

There are so many ways to pair these types of fonts, but my top two tips are:
01. Stick with 2-3 fonts TOPS throughout your branding. You can always add dimension with things like bold, italics, or size changes. But 2-3 will allow you to keep everything consistent. You'll want to designate a Header Font, Sub-Header Font & Body Text Font. Here's an example of how mine look for Reux Design Co. 


HEADER FONT

Sub-Header Font

BODY TEXT FONT


02. Always pair fonts that are opposite in SOME way. Whether it's tall & short, thin & thick, serif & sans serif. This difference will allow the reader to more definitively see sections & divisions throughout the page, as opposed to it being one big block of words. Below are some ideas of how to pair my favorite fonts. 

font1.jpg

PAIRING TIP ONE: Pair a romantic serif (header) with a modern sans serif (sub-header). To keep things consistent, use the header font in a small size + italic for the body text. 

how to combine fonts properly | Reux Design Co.

PAIRING TIP TWO: You can use the same font for the header & sub-header, but change it up a bit! Here you can see contrast added by making the header all uppercase and making the sub-header italic. To add some freshness, use a simple sans serif for the body text. 

brand identity designer's favorite fonts | Reux Design Co.

PAIRING TIP THREE: Play with thickness within a font family. Pair a modern sans serif with a classic serif for the header + sub-header. But then use a thinner version of the header font for the body text. This keeps it consistent but adds enough interest to stand out. 

the best fonts for your DIY brand | Reux Design Co.

PAIRING TIP FOUR: Similar to the last example, play with thickness. If you want a super modern + cool look, only use sans serif fonts. However, when you play with font variations (thickness + uppercase/lowercase) you create a visually appealing combo. 

the basics about fonts and typography | Reux Design Co.

PAIRING TIP FIVE: Use a classic serif in all lowercase for a more updated take on the font. Paired with a cool sans serif and italic body font, this combo is a fun way to refresh a traditional look. 

Hopefully this give you some insight into how I pair fonts, some favorites you can use & tips for applying this info to your brand! Remember, the most important thing you can do is keep your fonts consistent everywhere! Whether its your website, business cards, marketing graphics, even Instagram quotes. The more consistent you are, the better people will be able to recognize your brand & you can attract your ideal customers. I'd love to know your favorite fonts or font questions in the comments below!