Thomas and Friends Logo

Thomas & Friends LogoThomas & Friends Logo PNG

The Thomas and Friends logo ensures brand recognition. It serves as a means of identification and distinguishes the animated series from others. Moreover, the emblem evokes associations with friendship, adventures, and the world of childhood, which are the main values of the franchise.

Thomas & Friends: Brand overview

Founded:9 October 1984
Founder:Britt Allcroft
United Kingdom
Some grew up with Thomas and Friends, while others only know that it’s a story about a little blue steam engine. The origins of the animated children’s series date back to 1942 when writer and Anglican priest Wilbert Vere Awdry began to compose fairy tales to entertain his son sick with measles. The first characters were named Henry, Gordon, and Edward, and Thomas appeared after some time. The Railway Series included more than 40 books, some of which were written by Wilbert’s son, Christopher. An animated series was filmed based on these stories, the rights to which now belong to HIT Entertainment. An early adaptation of the stories for television appeared in 1953: it was a live broadcast using real train models. A new TV show aired in 1984. Until 1989, it was only shown in the UK, after which a version for American viewers was created.

Meaning and History

Thomas & Friends Logo History

The story of a blue steam engine with a human face with a live mimic is known worldwide. Therefore, a logo that imitates a cloud of steam is well-known to children and adults from many countries. It was used both for the original animated show and for a variety of products, including stickers and toys. The emblem has changed many times because it had to match the evolving graphics of the animated series. Its font became clearer each time, and the colors became brighter and more attractive. The most noticeable redesign took place in 1999 when the series was renamed. Before that, it was called Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends.

What is Thomas and Friends?

Thomas and Friends is a popular children’s TV show about trains that live on the fictional island of Sodor. It promotes mutual aid and teamwork. The animated series first aired in 1984 and is a TV adaptation of Wilbert Vere Awdry’s books. It has become one of the largest preschool media franchises, including movies, toys, amusement parks, and much more.

1984 – 1990

Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends Logo 1984

The first episode came out in 1984. It used the same logo that was introduced in the 1983 pilot episode: a red inscription “THOMAS THE TANK ENGINE & FRIENDS” in a white cloud with black contours. The text was divided into three lines and centered. The bold font with rectangular serifs looked exactly like the Beton typeface.

1990 – 1994

Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends Logo 1990

The designers changed the shape of the cloud, making it symmetrical. If previously the left side protruded significantly downward, the redrawn version corrected this flaw. The base of the word mark became more balanced, while the inscription itself did not change.

1994 – 2000

Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends Logo 1994

In 1994, the emblem developers reduced the letters to solve the main problem – the lack of free space, because of which all the words merged together. The cloud was further aligned, and the thickness of its black contour decreased.

1999 – 2007

Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends Logo 1994

In 1999, the name of the animated series was shortened to Thomas & Friends, so the inscription on the logo also shrunk. In the new version, the phrase occupied only two lines. Designers set it in a clear font with sharp serifs and removed the dark contours that previously existed around each letter. The outer outline of the cloud became bright blue, and the red color of the text acquired a scarlet shade.

2008 – today

Thomas & Friends Logo

In 2008, the Thomas and Friends logo was changed, giving it a more modern and attractive look. This update included the addition of three-dimensional contours with a gradient, which creates visual depth and volume. Now the emblem corresponds to the graphics of the animated series and harmoniously complements it. The main colors became a little darker, making the inscription and the cloud more visible on different backgrounds.

Font and Colors

In the early versions of the word mark, the Beton font with rectangular serifs was used. Likely, it was an adaptation by Letraset, which slightly modified the capital letters of the Bold Condensed and Extra Bold subfamilies. It differed from the original with curved legs of “R” and “K.” When the animated series was renamed, its logo font changed to Flange BQ Bold by Leslie Usherwood. Now the glyphs have sharp and short serifs.

In the 2008 emblem, the main colors are red, blue, and white. This combination is designed to attract the attention of children. Designers added gradient outlines of different shades, wanting to make the image voluminous.

Thomas & Friends color codes

Pigment RedHex color:#ee1c24
RGB:238 28 36
CMYK:0 88 85 7
Pantone:PMS Bright Red C
Rich Electric BlueHex color:#009bdf
RGB:0 155 223
CMYK:100 30 0 13
Pantone:PMS 801 C