We all keep talking about what’s going to be ‘in’ in 2021 – trends, tools, and tricks. But what’s going out? What are the design directions that we are abandoning in 2021 and the trends that we are leaving behind?
As we explore this area of discussion, one thing is clear. The stark minimalism of the past decades feels cold in the new one that we’ve entered. The last year has been instrumental in helping all of us realize what’s important: close human connections, shared experiences, and authentic living.
Taking a cue from these shifting philosophies, the graphic design trends that favored a Spartan and minimal look are out. Typography that was either too thick or clunky or too playful; brand messaging that had too many design elements going on; coloring styles that were sending mixed messages, are all taking a backseat in 2021.
The new year and the new decade are about a cozier vibe, a humanistic feel, and organic consumer connections. And since graphic design is my passion, here are some of the trends I think will be retiring soon.
So, keep your branding on point for the new times and take a look at the 5 graphic design trends that we are bidding adieu in 2021.
– Capslock Logos
All-caps logos have been an aesthetics nightmare for a long time now, and we’re glad we’re bidding them farewell. Major brands such as General Motors, The Body Coach, and Citrix recently got rid of their heavy, bulky, and aggressive brand marks and instead opted for more fluid, modern, and neater brand identity representations in the form of all-lowercase letters.
– Outline Strokes
The outlines on a logo design used to be perceived as a sign of emphasis and authority. In reality, all they did was add unnecessary weight to the logo. Scaling became challenging as strokes made readability an issue.
Brands that recently let go of their outline stroke logos are Pringles, Tecate, and JetPuffed.
– Dual Colors
Precision and focus are keys to an effective brand message. You cannot hope to send an impactful message when your brand logo seems to be conveying all sorts of things. Dual-colored logos have been guilty of this crime. Thankfully, though, they are making this exit in 2021.
Brands that harbored dual-color logos have finally seen sense and have adopted much cleaner and focused brand identity designs. Meatable, Celtra, and Casey’s are few examples.
– Playful Typography
While playful typography may have its place on children-oriented brands, it does not look too professional for most other brand identities. In 2021, we are seeing brands outgrowing their laid-back, casual brand images, and adopting more grounded, confident, and stronger typographical styles. Companies that have made this transition with panache are Brewbike, Footshop, and Brex, among others.
– Color Shades
Know those logos with shiny color shades that made you wanted to shield your eyes? Thankfully, their days are numbered. Brand design experts have realized that those color shades serve no real brand or design purpose other than adding an inexplicable sheen to the logo. Brands that are cleaning up their logos and entering 2021 with much nicer, calmer, and modern brand identities and flat logo designs include Baskin Robbins, Burger King, and Pfizer.