When considering our new logo, we were interested in creating an image that not only represented our brand's vision but also had either a historical or cultural significance to Chicago. We love our city's flag as much as the next Chicagoan, and we've used the flag's stars in our old logos and web design for years, but we decided to switch it up and reinterpret another iconic, but lesser-known, image for our new look. The Y-shaped circle that we decided on is not just an upside down Mercedes sign, we swear. It has an extensive history and can be found on many buildings and municipal landmarks throughout the city, most famously in the sign for the Chicago Theater.
Originally created for a Chicago Tribune contest in 1892, the Y symbol was used as the city's municipal logo for decades until government leaders in the 1960s stopped using it, feeling that it might be interpreted as a peace symbol with an upside-down Y. In reality, the Y is meant to represent the three branches of the Chicago River. While the symbol may be hidden in plain sight, you can find it on libraries, government buildings, and even some lamp posts if you look hard enough.
Chicago Theatre Sign
Chicago Cultural Center Ceiling
Franklin Street Bridge
Chicago Public Library Floor
Since you can find the letters "CHI" on many of our products, we wanted to meld the two ideas together into one clean, stylish design. It's time that the municipal symbol made a comeback and we'd like to lead the way with our new modern logo.