BTLOly #11: Slovenia

In John van der Woude
Feb 14th, 2014

Switzerland-636BTLOly (Best Team Logos in the Olympics) continues today, and will continue during the length of the Olympics. Of note, The “logos” are not the official logos for any of the hockey federations of the countries and have been designed specifically for this short 2-week long tournament. As such, these are meant to be temporary logos to symbolize a country, so there’s different things to consider. That being said, these logos are still symbolizing a country, so a certain amount of thought has to be put into their design. 

Enough with the disclaimer, let’s keep going with #11…

PrintFor being the first Olympic hockey tournament that Slovenia has participated in, they really didn’t get much from Nike in terms of unique jerseys or, as in the case of this post, their logo crest. The Slovenian team has already used this logo in their recent international tournaments and for whatever reason, Nike wasn’t inclined to change it at all, or give Slovenia any sort of special Olympic treatment.

It’s an odd choice as it doesn’t jive at all with the design decisions that Nike has been making with the rest of the Olympic jerseys. Nike’s doing so little jiving with this logo that some jerk pulled the plug on the stereo system and installed this sign. What a jerk. What an anti-jivist.

And while that’s problematic, that’s not the main reason this logo falls down to #11 on the BTLOly countdown. One reason is that, similar to the previously talked about Japanese logo, the word ‘Slovenia’ is in English, representing a Slovenian team who (presumably) all speak Slovenian as their native tongue (no, not that native tongue) in a tournament that’s taking place in Russia, who speak Russian. Why they didn’t consider changing the text to Slovenian (and in this case, that would only necessitate adding in a ‘j’ as the Slovenian word for Slovenia is Slovenija) is incomprehensible. Inconceivable even.

As for the font, it’s hard to tell exactly which font it is. Our recreation of it for this post uses Helvetica Bold Condensed, and it looks relatively similar. Could be something slightly different, but either way, it’s a pretty standard, nondescript – and therefore – uninteresting choice. Helvetica is a nice font (one of the best ever, according to some, and it’s even had a movie made about it), but for a national hockey jersey, it’s a bit lacking.

The colour scheme is definitely unique, with the navy blue and lime green combination. Outside of the context of the Olympics, it works really well, giving the team colours a unique, fresh and distinctive vibrancy. But a huge part of the design process is context, and within the context of the Olympics, the logo just doesn’t make sense when every other team is using national colours, usually based on the national flag. While there is a blue in the flag, that lime green is nowhere to be found. So while the uniqueness of the colours is nice, it’s not very nationalistic and again, not jiving (or moonwalking) with the concept consistent with the rest of the countries.

The only real symbol of Slovenia on the logo is the three stars beneath ‘Slovenia’, drawing from the Slovenian coat of arms, above the central mountain peak. And while the coat of arms more accurately describe the stars as being yellow, having them as blue in the logo isn’t a big deal. We all know how much reality in colour matters to some hockey clubs anyway. But, the more unique use of a six-pointed star (as opposed to the more common 5-pointed star) is a detail that gives it a little more character. On the coat of arms, the three stars symbolize democracy for Slovenia, which adds an impactful but simple design element to a logo for a country that lived for many years under the socialist state of Yugoslavia.

Overall, it’s a logo that’s completely out of context for the Olympics, and strangle disassociated from its own country. If (or when) they make the Olympics again, hopefully the logo (and the jersey) receive a bit more thought.

Agree? Disagree? Let me know in the comments.

BTLOly #12: Canada
BTLOly #13: Norway
BTLOly #14: Japan



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