The Barstow School in Leawood, Kansas, began work on an innovation campus to be used by Barstow students and the Kansas City community at large. The center will provide educational opportunities in STEAM, sports training facilities, an early childhood development center and spaces for student entrepreneurship to flourish. Our team was tasked with both naming and branding this space, and helping it to stand out from other makers’ spaces across the country, as well as be distinct from the Barstow School brand.

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Logo Design:

The IDEA Space KC name is significant, with the letters of IDEA standing for Innovation, Discovery, Entrepreneurship and Arts. I wanted the logo to have a modern and technological feel, with a nod to the “making” that would be happening in their state of the art labs and workshops.

Since the IDEA Space is primarily for students, I used bright colors to create a playful and fun mood. At the same time, I wanted to make it feel technologically advanced and almost futuristic in order to set it apart from the Barstow School’s very traditional brand. It was also important for it to be clear to a viewer that the word IDEA was an acronym, but also spelled out a word that is intrinsic to the spirit of a makers space. The letterforms of IDEA are almost stencil-like, signifying that ideas are forming, and the IDEA Space provides the foundation that students will need to bring ideas to life.

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Color Palette:

The colors were chosen to be distinct from each other, as Innovation, Discovery, Entrepreneurship and Art are all distinct areas of the campus. The Discovery Center will be sponsored by the Barstow School, who’s primary brand color is green, and so the use of green in the Discovery portion of the logo and branding is a nod to the school.

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Brand Expansion Beyond the Logo:

Extending the brand came naturally after the logo was created. Playing off of the makers space and creation theme of the IDEA Space, I used the cutout versions of the letterforms from the logo to frame images and created unique backgrounds. The business card was developed into four different designs for each area of the IDEA Space, and employees and executives would have some of each, encouraging a fun “collect all four” mindset around the IDEA Space brand.