Injecting Risky Colors Into Your Designs

As we have seen so far, 2018 is the year of taking risks in your design. One of the best places to start taking risks is in the colors that you use.

That doesn’t mean that you need completely rethink your brand’s color palettes, like some of the brands mentioned below. Instead, be ready to inject some more risky colors in your design projects this year.


The soft launch of their new brand image? A new Taco Bell “Cantina” restaurant in Vegas, of course. Customers visiting the Cantina could shop branded Taco Bell merchandise, enjoy an alcoholic beverage, browse digital menu boards, choose from a tapas-style menu, and relax in a VIP lounge that no restaurant in Vegas is complete without.


In January of 2016, McDonald’s announced its latest rebrand. The company is no stranger to refreshing its image, but this one joined the ranks of all-time important rebrands by giving stores and marketing materials a look they’d never seen before. The burger giant began with new packaging, by branding agency Boxer, meant to act as a “mobile billboard” for the McDonald’s brand.

The company also unveiled new concept art for a variety of fresh store designs. “Simply Modern,” “Living Room,” and “Fresh + Vibrant” were just a few of the themes McDonald’s will roll out. So how did the McDonald’s design team convince the company to let them redesign their stores in the face of declining sales numbers? Max Carmona, senior director of U.S. restaurant design explains, “Our operations folks are starting to understand that design does matter, and not looking like a cafeteria does matter.” Time will tell whether a fresh coat of paint can repair the Big Mac originator’s image, but it’s sure fun to watch in the meantime.


The rebrand heard ‘round the world! When Instagram quietly unveiled their new logo in May of 2016, some loved it, some loathed it, and most of us thought a new app had appeared on our phones. The fact that everyone was talking about it and had an opinion? That’s what the world’s most important rebrands do. 

So why did they do it? Six years after the photo sharing app’s launch, it boasted more than 400 million users posting photos each month and 80 million photos every day. As Wired pointed out, “Those numbers boggle the imagination, and underscore how essential content is to Instagram’s continued growth.” It’s true, Instagram was no longer just a


Bold colors are the most common driving force that we have seen behind each of the design trends this year. I wouldn’t call any of the following colors traditional in any sense of the word. Sticking to the traditional corporate blue palette isn’t going to cut it this year. Also, if you noticed, minimalism and neutral color schemes are on its way out. Instead, I recommend going a little off the rails with the colors you pick–within reason.

Find a few colors that you can call your “unofficial brand colors” and use them across all your projects. This way, you can do something new and exciting but still stay close to your core values in other places.  

A great example of using bold color comes from the sports world, in Bleacher Report. They are in an extremely competitive space, fighting with thousands of sports writers for your eyeballs.

Another great example comes from the shoe giant, Adidas. They may actually be my new favorite company in 2018. I mean have you seen those NMDs and Ultraboosts?!

Across their site, they use bold fonts in their graphics or text, which looks great!

If you are lookign for a logo refresh or a startup trying to figure out where to start, we can help! Give us a call or email

 to get started!! 



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