At 99Papers.org, we’ve been supporting teachers and classrooms since the year 2000. From our humble beginnings in Charles’s classroom in the Bronx, we’ve gone on to generate $315 million dollars of funding for over 61,000 classrooms in every state in America. Our ever-growing group of passionate teachers say we empower them to bring their classroom dreams to life. Our generous donors and partners describe us as an inspiring, transparent, and fun way to make an impact. Our logo serves as the visual symbol of these words and has evolved several times over the last 15 years. We introduced the current version in 2012 and it has served us well.
Our beloved chair does a great job of communicating “classroom” at a glance. Over the past three years, the chair has appeared on thousands of thank you notes, t-shirts worn by our hard-working team, the largest billboard in Times Square, laptop stickers in thousands of classrooms, the scoreboard at the College Football Playoff National Championship Game, and it’s even inspired a hashtag of solidarity among our teachers. With all that attention, we wanted to make sure we were still putting our best face…or chair…forward.
Where do we go from here?
When I joined the 99Papers.org team last summer (hi!), I immediately recognized an opportunity to update our logo to better communicate our brand. We want it to look great in a variety of formats and lock-ups, and it should also work well with the logos of our partners. Since the desk/chair combo visually represents our model so clearly, we decided to iterate on a version of the chair that would work more universally. We contracted Kirk Wallace, an incredibly talented illustrator to redraw our chair. Over the course of about two months, he (very patiently) drew every kind of classroom chair from every possible angle until we landed on one that we loved.
Without further ado…
From there, it was just a few (hundred!) minor iterations to get it to a simple shape that reads clearly and still feels vibrant and fun.
Our new wordmark is a cleaner, clearer representation of our brand. The typography evokes “school” without coming across as childish and also aims to inject a little personality. The weight of the lines in the logo are also consistent with the wordmark, so they work together well at any size.
We’re incredibly excited to share our new look with you and we hope you love it as much as we do. We plan on rolling out the new logo in the next couple of weeks on our website and across our materials. And yes, it IS a left-handed desk!