Two Decades of the Viget Circles

Brian Williams, Co-Founder & CEO

Article Category: #News & Culture

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We're just 20 weeks away from our #Viget20 celebration. Follow along on Instagram as we celebrate our logo each week.

As a kid, I dreamed of starting a company. I loved the idea of organizing a world-class team, delivering products or services that created real value, and cultivating an authentic, original culture all our own. At first I didn’t know what the company would do or even be called, but I sketched in my notebook logo ideas for years in search of our own “Nike swoosh” -- a mark so simple and iconic that it’s most powerful on its own, without the company name.

In the mid-1990s, as I began the freelance web development work that formed the base service of Viget, a common theme emerged. Partnership, collaboration, teamwork. Two entities working together to create something neither could do individually. I wanted to create a logo mark that symbolized these ideas in the most simple, memorable way. And so, Viget’s two circles were born.

Many famous logo marks align closely with the name of the company (e.g., Apple is an apple, Puma is a puma, Target is a target). The Latin word “Viget” means “flourishing” or “thriving” … so how do two circles relate to flourishing? Well, they don’t.

Our company name, Viget Labs, LLC, was originally just a placeholder chosen by Pop. It’s inspired by Princeton University’s motto “Dei Sub Numine Viget,” where both Pop and Andy went to school. Viget was, and is, an awkward word to say and spell, so we intended to swap it out once the business felt stable enough to undergo a rebrand. So, I created a logo mark that could easily pair with a new company name when the time came. Alas, our early years were challenging times -- every month felt like it could be our last -- and by the time we were confident we’d be a lasting success, the name had stuck.

Those early sketches of the Viget logo made their way into the first version of our business cards circa 1999 -- so early that our mailing address was a P.O. Box.

Eventually, we moved out of the basement we were working in and got our own office space. Our logo went up on the wall, but just temporarily. Shortly after we moved in, they decided to demolish the building, which should give you a sense of how bad the office space was.

Over time we evolved the logo and our business cards, but the circles always remained.

Then, about 10 years ago, the great Doug Avery helped us evolve the logo a bit further. He selected a new typeface, dropped “labs” from the brand, and ever so slightly shifted the orientation of the circles.

I’ve always said the Viget circles are actually the same size. There’s depth and perspective designed into the mark. The partnership it represents reflects two equals, working together, side-by-side.

You can find the Viget circles anywhere. Planets in space, bubbles in soda, rocks on a beach, freckles on a face, wooden plugs in a hand-made conference table.

We even made an app to help you find it. It’s fun to see our creative teams incorporate the circles into all kinds of fun projects like Vigorbalm, Vigesauce, or Vige-doh.

Or bake it into this Viget15 cookie.

Or even how the Viget circles are cleverly hidden upside down in our Pointless Corp. logo.

I never thought I’d care about our logo being on a building, but I have to admit, I love going through the downtown of Falls Church and seeing our logo lit up. I love seeing it on now two decades worth of Viget gear. I love seeing it in my kids’ drawings’, especially when they point and say “Viget” perfectly. I love that in a small way, we have our Nike Swoosh.

The circles I sketched more than two decades ago are symbolic of the relationships we’ve made for almost 20 years. Today, we’re 20 weeks out from our 20th anniversary retreat (one we expect will be even more epic than our 15 year version). To kick off the celebration, each week leading up to our event, we'll share a different version of our two-circle logo inspired by some part of our two-decade history.

Follow us on Instagram to see what the team comes up with. And, if you’d like to join us and have Viget20 be your first TTT, apply soon -- it’s only 20 weeks away.

Brian Williams

Brian is Viget's co-founder and CEO. He does everything from advising our clients to building our conference tables with his bare hands in our Falls Church, VA, HQ.

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