Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Breaking brand (color)

Branding is touted as one of the most important aspects of business, and even individuals. Thinking of branding is a great exercise because it incorporates a necessary historical and cultural lens to the design process.

Deroy Peraza published a post on Medium titled The Women Running for President Are Breaking the Rules of Branding, and it is a wonderfully told story. He delves into history to show that few candidates historically broke brand with the traditional red, white, and blue for political campaigning in the United States. However, today, presidential hopefuls Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Tulsi Gabbard are setting themselves apart from the pack through their campaigns' choices of color. and playing their brand colors to the narrative of a multicultural society.

The Women Running for President Are Breaking the Rules of Branding by Deroy Peraza

And on this Lunar New Year, I noticed something else that has gradually been breaking brand: the traditional hóngbāo (红包), or red envelope. In Chinese culture, it is customary for elders to distribute red envelopes containing money to children and young adults as a sign of good luck for the coming year. Typically, its red, or vermillion, color has been an ancient symbol of good fortune and joy, hence its name. However, in recent years, designers have begun to break tradition.

Mostly of all of them used to look like this.

This is now being sold as a "vintage" red packet. Source

But now we're seeing envelopes like this.

Courtesy of my friend

As the global Chinese diaspora continues to adapt to their new cultures, it's always interesting to see how and to what extent they appropriate modern trends into their ancient traditions.

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