Langstruphave is a fine horse breeder in Denmark, presenting some of the finest Quarter Horses in Europe. They were looking to further distinguish themselves through fresh branding efforts that would convey an established professionalism and quality.
Initially, I was working on a script to evoke a sense of sophistication (this early direction is shown at the end). But I ultimately concluded that the style was working against the recognizability and simplicity that was needed. The quality and execution was there, but the legibility was a concern, especially since the word we are working with is 13 characters long.
I decided to return to the drawing board. With the renewed perspective and focus on legibility, I knew I needed to drop the script and pursue a more straightforward approach. A sans-serif would be too plain for the look we wanted to achieve, so I set about crafting a dignified serif, set in all caps to express the level of finesse needed.
The resulting serif direction allows the long word to be much more readable. The custom type is paired with “Quarter Horses” set in a medium weight of Avenir. This modest sans serif tagline works to provide a contrast that complements the “Langstruphave” serif.
While beautiful, the carefully employed ligatures serve more than just aesthetic purposes—they help promote a consistent rhythm of negative space throughout the word mark. The result is subtle and almost unnoticed upon first read, which is precisely the desired outcome.
Setting the name and tagline on two separate lines makes for a more consolidated mark that has greater versatility in branding application. Whereas the old logo had the name and tagline were set in a single line, there is no longer an extremely elongated mark that is difficult to apply. The simplified sans-serif tagline enables it to be readable even at its small size, giving the flexibility to use the logo across various mediums while retaining its recognizability and charm.
Though the above script concept I initially made is rather unique and enjoyable to look at, it didn’t stand up to the test of being easily readable—especially in reduction. With such a long and uncommon word, there is a lot to work against in making the word easy to parse. This meant opting to go with a much more straightforward style over the elegant script—which meant pursuing the serif direction. While less ornate, the final concept is a much stronger logo for the goals we had.
The palette is a slate-colored swatch of a slightly brightened black and an off-white. The median gray is dead center on the spectrum, allowing it to remain the same shade with light on dark versions as it does in dark on light.