Believe it or not, the UK’s largest retailer John Lewis & Partners, was once a small textile store. Its creator, John Lewis, was at the forefront of dry goods because we talked about 1864. Over time, he expanded the business, buying several department stores in different cities.
In 1928 the company was taken over by the founder’s son, John Spedan Lewis. The new leader used an unusual business model, making permanent employees co-owners of shares and shares. Now the John Lewis network continues to operate in the same format and is considered the best place to work.
Meaning and History
John Lewis & Partners’ emblems have always had something aristocratic – even in 1864, the first textile store opened. It is a reflection of the restrained British style that manifests itself in everything about the vintage brand.
1864 – 1930
In the beginning, the company was known as John Lewis & Co, which became the basis for its logo. A coherent handwritten font was used for the name, where each letter was connected to its neighbors. Under the diagonal line, below was the first department store’s address: OXFORD ST., LONDON W. I.
1925 – 1940
In 1925, another version of the emblem appeared, but without an address. The phrase “JOHN LEWIS & Co.” was written in an elegant typeface with varying line and serif weights.
1940 – 1956
In the middle of the 20th century, the brand name changed again, although the concept remained the same. The first letters (“J” and “L”) have been lengthened and aligned in height. At the bottom was the inscription “AND COMPANY LIMITED,” divided into two parts.
1956 – 1960
Another change in the emblem took place in 1956. For the phrase “JOHN LEWIS,” the designers chose a strict bold type with large rectangular serifs. The second line (“OF OXFORD ST., LONDON W. I.”) was written in small sans serif letters.
1960 – 1972
In 1960, the address disappeared, and an imitation of a handwritten font replaced the geometric serif. All letters except “J” and “L” have become lowercase.
1972 – 1990
In the logo of 1972-1990. the font for the “John Lewis” lettering has been revised. This time, the developers used the classic Gill Sans Bold.
1990 – 2000
At the end of the 20th century, the company’s name began to be written in capital letters with short serifs. Black was replaced by green, which is now known as Partner Green. Spedan Lewis used to sign documents with the ink of this shade.
2000 – 2018
The design firm Pentagram has slightly changed the character style. She brought back the Gill Sans Bold as in the 1972-1990 emblem but made the lines thinner, rounded the dot above the “i,” and cut off the first letters’ edges in each word. The classic green color has been preserved.
2018 – present
In June, the retail chain announced a name change. The executives added the word “Partners” to the name to draw attention to the unique business structure that makes its employees co-owners. The modernization of the logo followed the rebranding. Harry Pearce from Pentagram studio offered his vision of a new style.
The design work took over three years. The result is a graphic sign with the words “John Lewis & Partners” in a black square. On the left, there are three quadrangles of different widths. Lined up in a row, they resemble a barcode, consistent with the concept of a chain of stores.
Font and Colors of the Emblem
The current emblem, called Brand lines, is based on an original design from the 1960s that Peter Hatch and Hans Schleger designed specifically for the John Lewis Partnership. The Pentagram designers tried to keep the aspect ratio to make the rectangles look vintage. Abstraction presents John Lewis as a universal brand and is not tied to any particular product.
The latest logos of the chain store use various modifications of the Gill font. The final version features thin strokes and large letter-spacing. Pentagram created the typography. She also chose a color palette, preferring the classics – black and white monochrome.