BPO


HenshawFox by Parent, United Kingdom

Opinion by Richard Baird.

Brand identity and sign design by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

HenshawFox is a family run and independent estate agent with properties in and around the town of Romsey, United Kingdom. With a desire to move into the higher end of the market, from between £250k – £350k to £500k+, within the next two years, the estate agent commissioned graphic design studio Parent to develop their brand identity and interior design for their landmark office. This was to be more upmarket, aspirational and smart enough to compete with national brands. Alongside strategy and interior design, Parent developed and designed brand guidelines, brochures, signage and business cards.

Brand identity and sign design by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Parent’s solution finds a nice balance between the traditional and conservative, and a smart professionalism and modernity. This is expressed particularly well through interior design, which takes the very distinctive worn wood and irregular frame of the exterior, a distinct and memorable asset, and inside, employs precise lines across walls and furniture. There is a connection between building history and its recent renovation through exposed beams, the colour and materials of its furnishing and the extensive use of wood, but also through its visual identity.

Brand identity and interior design by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Although the identity does not have the bold and expressive character of say Fox Real Estate by Parallax, it still draws a distinctive and contemporary quality from what can be a conservative and traditional industry.

This really comes through in the choice of Roboto, a well-spaced and sensible sans-serif, the thoroughly current geometric and reductive line art fox, the pairing of a bright green and an aged wood colour, and the contrast of natural grain and the precise lines of type and logo within the context of signage, a particular highlight.

Logotype by graphic design studio Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Fox logo by graphic design studio Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Brand identity and business card by British graphic design studio Parent for Hampshire estate agent HenshawFox.

Business cards are bright and distinctive, perhaps a little adventurous with type size, but with a spacious and contemporary layout with a familiar and reassuringly professional quality.

Brand identity and brand guidelines designed by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Brand identity and brand guidelines designed by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Brand identity and brand guidelines designed by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Properrty card designed by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

In print, convention and conservatism dominates but is sensitive to the expectations of the market and the nature of the properties. These are not modernistic wall-to-wall ceiling-to-ceiling glass boxes, but large family homes. Think warmth, ample room, brick and conservatories. As such, brochures are straightforward, well-structured, clear and concise, with layouts that are varied yet cohesive, with plenty of space between images and copy. The colour palette is effectively used to give identity to property sheets and internal pages where type is less character and more efficient. The website works with all of these assets, and although colour and logotype provide continuity, it does not appear as functional or as well-resolved.

Brand identity and property brochure by graphic design studio Parent for Hampshire estate agent HenshawFox.

Brand identity and property brochure by graphic design studio Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Brand identity and property brochure by graphic design studio Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

BP&O looks to bring a variety of projects to the forefront. It is easy to forget that amongst the modernistic and minimal favoured by the design press there are some solid, well-thought out work being produced. Here, Parent’s approach to HenshawFox is not particularly challenging but it is reassuring, professional and grounded in very clear communicative intentions. There is a nice use of contrast, some lovely signage, a neat logo and a connection made between identity and office that secures character and distinction. More from Parent on BP&O.

Design: Parent. Opinion: Richard Baird. Fonts Used: Roboto.

Brand identity and sign design by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Brand identity and sign design by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

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Brand identity and sign design by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

Brand identity and sign design by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

What do you think of Parent’s work for HenshawFox? Share your thoughts in the comment section below or get the conversation started on Twitter.

Brand identity and sign design by Parent for Romsey estate agent HenshawFox.

If you liked this then you may also like:

Logo Design – Fox Real Estate  Logo Design – The Hugo  Logo Design – Mercer Supply Co.


  • a_wo

    Still a nice identity, but feels somewhat ‘templatey’

  • Shaughn_McGurk

    Why doesn’t the fox symbol always appear inside a circle? It has a bit more presence when it is circled – and looks a little lost on the window graphics and sale board. Plus, it doesn’t appear at all on the sign? I’m intrigued at the rationale for a modular identity, where elements come and go. It can work, but when it is a local estate agent and not a national chain, I’d be tempted to opt for a little more consistency.

    Lots of bits to like though. The green edge to the sign – though that would be even better if the green edge was internally illuminated. The reception desk is a monolithic delight, its sharp edges contrasting well with the worn, rough hewn ancient beams.

    • http://wwww.bpando.org/ Richard Baird

      I think that this project was full of a lot of compromises which were budgetary from what I understand, with most of it going to interior, which turned out really well

      When looking for new work, I tend to ask, what are the points of interest? Here, I think it’s the modernity and precision of identity and interior and the very traditional and irregular qualities and texture of building and wood. Aside from a couple of the inconsistencies you mention, and a conservative client, it’s a strong foundation that, with a bit more investment, could easily be tightened up.