The two silos that characterize Chip and Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Market in Waco, Texas served as the inspiration for Loyalkaspar’s branding of Magnolia Network. The linear network, which assumes DIY Network’s spot on the cable grid, officially launched on January 5 after debuting as an app in July.
“Our role in this project was to collaborate with the Magnolia team and bring them along in terms of what kinds of tools a linear network brand needs,” said Beat Baudenbacher, chief creative officer, Loyalkaspar. “Part of that process was making the case for why the existing logo wasn’t a great fit.”
The prior logo was the word Magnolia in a serif font, which ends up taking up a lot of horizontal space as a button for an app, for example, or as a network bug.
Loyalkaspar made the case for ”why we needed to come up with something that could hold up at 25 pixels,” Baudenbacher said. “We also were trying to find the emotional center of the entire Magnolia universe and that ended up being the silos.”
The two 120-foot high grain-storage silos that tower over the market were originally built in 1950 by the Brazos Valley Cotton Oil Mill Company. By the 1990s, they were no longer used for storage. After a remodel of the grounds, Magnolia Market at the Silos – which includes a 12,000-square-foot retail store, food-truck park, garden store, bakery and lawn area – opened in 2015. With the Gaines’ HGTV series, Fixer Upper, becoming a huge hit, the market attracts millions of visitors each year.
Loyalkaspar began working on branding the fledgling Magnolia Network in early 2020, just prior to the pandemic taking hold, and the team was not able to travel to Waco to gather information. Instead, they looked at photos and videos. While doing that, Baudenbacher realized that the silos naturally formed an “M” and the logo was born. He then paired that with a wordmark in a sans serif font that he created.
“This is one of those rare moments where everything comes together – concept and visuals,” he said. “I made the typography, the visual aesthetic of which is very simple. There’s a specific relationship that I wanted between the stroke weight of the mark and the typography.”
The Gaines ended up liking the new logo so much that they made it the hero logo for their entire network of companies, which besides the network and market includes a real estate company, restaurant and more.
“We did a pretty extensive brand positioning, interviewing stakeholders, to define the Magnolia Network brand,” said Loyalkaspar President David Herbruck. “Inspired by and rooted in the ethos of Magnolia, it has its own distinctive lens. The emotional core of the strategy is ‘feels like home,’ and ‘time well spent.’ After we did that, the team realized they needed to do the same for the mother brand and they ended up o-opting the logo, which is now called the Silocon, and using it both for the network and to represent the whole portfolio of Magnolia brands.”
Magnolia’s overall look is understated and natural, and Loyalkaspar selected a palette for the network to match that aesthetic, using such colors as a neutral but greenish off-white, charcoal and khaki green. Colors featured in the secondary palette include a light slate blue and a mustard yellow.
Once those key design choices were made, Loyalkaspar got to work creating toolkits to be used across the linear network, app and online. Outside of the wordmark, Loyalkaspar chose two fonts – a classic but quirky serif font called Recolleta and a sans serif font called Walsheim – to service the brand across platforms.
Magnolia Network offers such programs as the Gaines’ original Fixer Upper and the rebooted Fixer Upper: Welcome Home as well as Joanna Gaines’ cooking show Magnolia Table and many more original home, garden, food and lifestyle series.