Archive for ‘icons’ category

Re-Brand New

For the first time ever, SimpleBits has a logo! Roughly six years ago, I took a stab at creating an isometric set of three boxes (cardboard, to be specific). It was really an icon — and one that sat in the header alongside my personal site at the time, the now-defunct cederholm.org. Over the years, it’s always been there, and I’ve probably overdone it in terms of branding: I put the boxes everywhere. It became the brand. But it was always awkward, and highly inflexible. It worked terrible in print, where at small sizes, the pixelated blocks looked more like botched clip art.

Several months ago, I finally started on a new logo design — something I’d been meaning to do for years. It went rather quickly, playing with four curly brackets set in Avenir that created a frame around a hand-drawn cube (vector this time!). I finally had something I didn’t hate the next day. I’m excited to have a mark that’ll be flexible going forward, and it was crucial for me to create one that could be any size, or color (even looking intact using a single color).

(fig). old and new logos
I owe Greg Storey (Airbag Industries) thanks for suggesting Whitney for the logo’s type, after I realized that the previously-utilized Triplex just wasn’t working.

It was the logo refresh that forced me to rework the site design as well. I’m not one to change things for the sake of changing things, but the new logo was a good excuse to update the templates as well. And what you see now is the result of several weeks of tinkering.

Much of the structure and layout of the site remain the same. Nothing earth-shattering here. This time around, I’m trying out an elastic (Elastic Design) em-based layout. If you’re unfamiliar, try resizing the text in your browser to see what happens. For this particular site, I think it works well. If I had the need/desire/requirement for an additional column, then I would’ve explored other fluid or variable fixed-width (clagnut: Variable fixed width layout) options. But for this simple, two-column set-up, I thought it’d be interesting to try something with ems.

I’m hoping the revised logo will help swing the rest of the company forward. I have a lot of ideas and things in mind for the future, and this is merely step #1. Here goes nothing. But first, new business cards need ordering.

New Chameleon Icon Sets

It’s been almost exactly one year since releasing Chameleon, a customizable stock icon set for the web. It’s been really successful, and later spawned additional ideas for color changing goods. Then life happened, and most of those ideas fell by the wayside.

iconsI’m happy to announce today, at least a small portion of those grand ideas in the form of two new Chameleon icon pack styles:

Chameleon Graphite
A reversed version of the original, the graphite style has a shiny silver container for the tiny shapes that change color inside.
Chameleon Mini
Just the tiny shapes without the container. I’d been meaning to get this set finished since releasing the original and just never got around to it. These miniature icons are especially great for embellishing links inline.

Just like the original style, each of these new sets is available in a “Ready-Made” pack of six pre-selected colors ($35 USD), or as a single set using the hex color of your choosing ($25 USD). Hope you dig ‘em.

Color Trends

It’s been just a few months since Chameleon was released. The response has been fantastic, and I thought it’d be cool to share a sampling of some of the custom colors that people are purchasing.

icon color samples

It’s interesting to see very specific colors being chosen (in general, as opposed to web-safe). To me, that’s a sign that the custom engine thingy was a good idea. It’s also fun to imagine how these specific colors are fitting into their designs. Would love to see examples out in the wild, should anyone want to share.

And for what it’s worth, endless shades of blue seem to be far more popular than any other color. Hooray blue.

Chameleon: a new icon set that changes color

figureI’m excited to finally announce a little something I’ve been working on for quite awhile. Chameleon is a unique stock icon set for the web that features simple, friendly, universal shapes designed and hand-crafted by SimpleBits. The set contains 70 royalty-free icons, each weighing in at a standard 16×16 size (perfect for favicons) in GIF format. Chameleon is unique in its ability to change color, allowing you to custom match the set to your own site’s color pallette.

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