Logotype for Irish pub

jayyy's picture


Just wanted to get some feedback on this. It is an identity redesign for an Irish pub I work at called 'The Field'. The pub resembles an Irish farmhouse or cottage and is very rustic and homely - extremely unique and traditional. They have been in business for over 7 years and have quite a poor and hacked up Celtic blackletter logotype at the moment. They are renowned for great food and music.

The type is set in a modified version of Device's Sparrowhawk which was traced and scanned to give it a handlettered feel. The tagline is set in Steelplate Gothic Shaded. The parchment is quite likely to be the treatment so I thought it should be in there.




sihep's picture

If you want opinions I reckon both versions could do something with the "The" to make it a more interesting composition. Personally I prefer the different sized letters and upper and lower case on the old logo and think you might want to look at some other typefaces as the one you have isn't really saying "very rustic and homely" to me at the moment. Best wishes.

Stephen Rapp's picture

The placement of "the" does look awkward poised on top of the F. So in terms of layout I like the bottom sample best. I like the type you used for Irish Pub and Eatery on the first one, but the type for "Field" doesn't work with it in my opinion.

You might consider staying away from the uncial types as they seem rather cliche for an Irish pub. I don't know what your decor there is like, but a lot of Irish pubs have the feel of early 20th century. It might be worth considering a type treatment along those lines if thats the case. Sort of what you might see on an old bottle of whiskey.

Stephen Rapp

Stephen Rapp's picture

Oops! I didn't realize that the 3rd sample wasn't Jay's. Sorry about that. But I do think that the layout on Sihep's version is stronger.

jayyy's picture

Thanks for the feedback guys.

Agree with you about the 'the'. As for the 'rustic and homely' - I guess I neglected to say that the pub is the most authentic and rustic Irish pub in the area. The key differentiator is the fact it is really Irish, so I wanted to maintain that in the type.
So Stephen - I know it is cliched to use uncial type BUT the pub is not early 20th century by any means - much more 18th century and Celtic country!

I am working on some alternates but keep the comments coming.


jayyy's picture

I also set it in Sparrowhawk so as not to use a standard old tired uncial and traced it to soften it and make it less clinical. I will post a sample untraced and unmodified.

robbiefa's picture

-The most authentic and rustic Irish pub in the area

You should come out with me some time and I'll show you some real authentic Irish pubs!!

I love the generic uncial look for Irish pubs and your right Jayy I don't think you can avoid it. Please just try stay away from using a typeface like Helvetica for the tag line.

If your going to keep it authentic you might try Colmcille, it's still easily read and would fit in nicely with your wood cut.

robbiefa's picture

Please excuse this terrible mock up!

I think the a more traditional typeface would work better with the uncial in this case.

jayyy's picture

Thanks Rob.

The main problem with that is it's derivative of the old logo. I do like Colmcille though. That's why I picked Sparrowhawk - it has Celtic accents but is not blackletter, it's gothic. Colmcille has roman accents which looks a bit 20th century.

Tomorrow I will post plenty of alternates.

Ratbaggy's picture

I like the new version ... just doesn't feel quite as unified as the original though.

Paul Ducco
Graphic Design Melbourne
Bicycle Film Festival

jayyy's picture

Agreed Paul. I have a feeling it may have been my alterations to the type.
What do you reckon makes it kinda disjointed? I like the combo of Sparrowhawk and Steelplate. I think I may have gone wrong with the alterations I made.

Here is the type set regularly:

My worries were that the 'D' was not Celtic enough and when I put the ascender on I needed to counterbalance with the taller 'F'.

The 'D' does suit the gothic type below though.

typerror's picture


Take a look at Solemnis by Lange. It may be a bit stiff for you but it is very clean and has a lot of authority.


rlynch's picture

Have you tried any hand-lettering? I think it would a good direction to go in. I think 'Field' in the old logo is streets ahead of this new solution.


jayyy's picture

Have not done any hand lettering yet. But I have got some calligraphy pens to try.

This is the newest iteration. I have added a banyan tree as this is the focal point of the pub.

jayyy's picture

Oh and thanks for the recommendation of Solemnis Michael. I have never seen this before and I thought I looked at nearly every Celtic blackletter! I think it is a bit too fussy for what I envisaged. Want something with cleaner lines to it.

jakes's picture

I like it better before. The banyan tree make it feels feminine for some reason.

AndrewSipe's picture

It's starting to get busy... too busy. It doesn't feel congruent. There seems to be 3-4 different elements/styles working, but not well, together.

The Field from your original post is much better than the current version, all it needed was a little more roughing. I would have ran it through the photocopier a few times to give it some "antiquing".

The Irish Pub & Eatery byline stands out way too much. While the style is sharp and unique it isn't very "Irish" feeling. I'd stay with a more organic, earthy approach. The Irish are Earthy people and the current style feels very rigid and well, stylish.

And the Banyan Tree is just over the top... very heavy and throws the entire layout a little out of whack. It also seems very clean. It needs tossed in the mud and then backed over with the car a few times.

Just giving my honest impressions, nothing against you Jay or your abilities. I'd take this as a true opportunity. It's not often one gets to create a logo for an Irish establishment. I'd really do some research, visit some other local Irish establishments, sample the delectable Irish fare and beverages. Have some Single Malt Scotch and Guinness or 2. Practice your brogue when talking to friends and relatives. Wear some plaid, or atleast some green and if it's not too cold, hit the links. All in the name of research!

typerror's picture

I thought it might be a bit to fussy Jay. But take a look at it again and imagine it without the serifs.

By the way... you need to try some Belle Haven, although it is a Scottish Ale it will certainly get you thinking... if not hallucinating if you drink a wee too much : )


jayyy's picture


Thank you for your frank critique. I do want to antique it for sure, but want to get the type and treatment correct first. I feel the tagline would loose legibility at smaller sizes were it any smaller. The tree, as fussy as it is, is stylistically subjective. I have seen many logos in recent years published and recognized for their brilliance that have much fussier graphical treatments that I hated. So I can see your argument.

And not to sound conceited...BUT...I am Irish, from Dublin. Have been to more Irish pubs than I would like to admit, drank more Guinness, Irish Whiskey (Scotch is from Scotland btw as is plaid), have a natural Irish accent and have been immersed in so much Irish culture while in the US and at home that I think I would bleed green if cut.

That said, you not being Irish and the target market not being Irish but the sort that are of Irish ancestry and think Scotch is from Ireland, may also not get it.

One thing I hate is the total tackiness of any of the Irish/American crap I see. Despite a lot of research, I have not been able to find any Irish pub logos that I like - with the exception of Fado which I feel is contemporary and represents a modern and progressive Ireland and not the backward tack you see most places.

What did you mean by 'imagine it without the serifs'?
We just got Belhaven this week :) Got to wait to finish our Czechvar before we can put it on line though. It is so good with the nitro pour.

typerror's picture

Shave them off in Photoshop if they are what is bothering you! I would not want to convince you but I think Solemnis is one of the most beautiful hybrid Uncial/Roman fonts ever. A wee bit of the Isles with a bit of the Roman punch. I would use it in a logo, but for almost 30 years people have demanded that I hand letter their requests... so I have never had a chance. I bought the font when I bought my second computer... haven't ever even used it but I love to look at it.

As to the Belhaven (and thank you for the spelling correction) I had 4 quarts and 8 shots of Irish whiskey at my rehearsal dinner. Needless to say I was worthless for a bit : ) The owner shut down his pub for our dinner and we went 'til 2. Needless to say the parents went home early but the band played on!


AndrewSipe's picture

You're not conceited, I wasn't aware. I saw Florida and well, just assumed. Also, I didn't mean to offend by mixing my countries together.

Having that out of the way, I agree with you on the front that Americanized Irish Pubs don't have a clue when it comes to their signage. But, I do also like the Fado's logo. There's a Fado's in Philly I've been to on occasion.

If it's Fado's that you like, I'd suggest following their example. The logo is simple, but rustic without being overloaded. And there aren't mixed styles. If you create a solid identity, then the idea of The Field being an Irish Pub and Restuarant should be understood without having being said.

You might have approached this idea already, but what if you created a field, and have a simpler Banyan Tree as the center point. I'm picturing shafts of wheat on both sides. Then include a weathered version of The Field positioned next to this illustrated field.

Again, just a suggestion. I don't mean to ruffle any feathers. When I see a design posted in the crit section, I critique it.

jayyy's picture

No feathers ruffled at all - just had to let you know :)

I have to go to work but I will post updates tomorrow. Thanks again.

cslem1's picture

Eh...the wavy appendages on the type...look...weird. I mean, what is more tradiational than an irish pub?! you need to sell that culture...their heritage. It's kind of like people craving pizza for dinner. More often than not, they will go to the store with the green, white and red sign...why? because it's Italian! They have a rep for making the best pizza! ( and they do generally make really good pizza!) I just think the wavy lines draw too much attention away from that.

robbiefa had a good direction with the sub head. I'm not so sure the sans serifs are working. It looks too much like a meatball shub shop. I hope I'm not coming off too harsh, I don't mean to at all. I'm just a big believer that it's best to accent the strengths of a business in their logo if at all possible. An Irish Pub's strength is the simple fact that they are Irish! :) well at least their claiming to be in their pub's name.


jayyy's picture

It's been a busy couple of weeks and I finally got back to this. I spent a lot of hours doing calligraphy sketches. I then scanned, traced and modified. This is by no means a finished piece and needs a lot of work. I just thought I would post the progress to see what you guys think of the new direction.


designtn's picture


Here is my 2¢.

I really like the details in the original logo, not the form.
Not all of the letters have to adhere to the baseline.
If you are going of a rustic fell, what you have above feels too clean and computerize.
Retain all of the details from your scans.

good luck dude


jayyy's picture

Thanks Tony.

jayyy's picture

Just to mention Tony, I agree with you 100% regarding the over-cleanliness of the revision. The main reason I did not include any irregularities from my scan is that there's a lot of irregularities! Calligraphy is shit hard and I now have a new found respect for scribes of old :)
My plan was to hand draw as close to what I wanted as possible, thereby having an authentic sketch to reference when tracing. Then once I have all of my letterforms working well with each other and of proper scale and proportion, then I would introduce color, texture and 'vintage' it up somewhat, possibly even retracing it by hand like my initial idea.

Syndicate content Syndicate content