Seattle Sounders FC, ahead of their 50th anniversary in 2024, have unveiled a brand evolution that includes a new crest and associated marks alongside a refreshed color palette.
The new visual identity is the byproduct of Seattle engaging with fans, supporters, community members and other club stakeholders. It is designed to incorporate the Sounders’ entire history, encompassing and celebrating the club’s roots in Seattle and the Pacific Northwest since 1974.
“Today marks the culmination of much careful, contemplative and thorough work, and it is incredibly rewarding to now introduce Sounders FC’s brand evolution,” majority owner Adrian Hanauer said in a release. “It was a dream achieved to bring the Sounders to Major League Soccer in 2009, but, like many of our fans, my love for the club started long before its MLS era.
“As Sounders, our past runs deep and proud, and that’s why we’re especially pleased to introduce this new visual identity, which isn’t so much a change as it is an evolution that more faithfully encompasses the entirety of the club. Every element in the brand now connects directly to our history. We are thrilled to continue building the Sounders legacy under our new crest as we celebrate our 50th anniversary and look ahead to the next 50 and beyond.”
Seattle will finish the 2023 season – including any Audi MLS Cup Playoffs games – with their current crest and colors. In 2024, they will fully transition to the evolved brand identity.
The new crest takes an elegant but classic approach, embracing a more robust badge shape and modernized Space Needle image, while adding “1974” as an explicit call to the Sounders’ founding year.
Along with the crest come new wordmarks and secondary marks, incorporating an entirely unique font custom-built for Sounders FC. New tertiary marks include a playful, resilient orca, a carnation rooted in history and bold 74, along with an abbreviated SFC monogram.
Sounders FC’s color scheme remains “Eternal Blue, Forever Green,” while slightly adapting the tones of Rave Green and Pacific Blue to be more wearable and adding a new shade of blue called Heritage Aqua, which outlines the crest and hearkens to the original Seattle Sounders color palette.
Throughout comprehensive discussions about the future of Sounders FC, the club engaged via public surveys, one-on-one conversations, digital focus groups and in-person roundtables, working with the intention of providing an opportunity for members of the Sounders community to add their voices to the project.
Groups that took part include but are not limited to Season Ticket Members; Alliance Council members; supporters; Sounders FC fans and general Seattle sports fans; team members, including coaches, players and alumni; current and former club staff; community stakeholders; and Seattle tastemakers, including members of the creative, fashion and music scenes in the Emerald City.
“From the beginning, the club has been open and honest,” said Alliance Council president Cameron Collins. “Alliance Council, which represents all Sounders Season Ticket Members, has participated in this project every step of the way, including seeing designs and providing feedback – most notably as part of a full experiential workshop prior to the team’s Concacaf Champions League victory in May 2022.
“This is a brand evolution, not a revolution; we’re not a club that needs reinvention. While it is a change, this new system is familiar and rooted in our history. We are proud to have our fingerprints on this final product.”