McCadden Design office Belfast

Given that I’ve been back in Northern Ireland for a little over a year now, I thought it appropriate to put some focus on local design studios. Belfast-based McCadden Design has been working with organisations in the UK and Ireland for more than 25 years. Here’s a small selection of their logos.

Titanic Quarter

Titanic logo design

“Currently the largest waterfront development in Europe, Titanic Quarter is a massive yet dynamic undertaking which takes its name from the part of the site where the Titanic was built. The four funnels of the iconic ship play a key role in our identity – a decision that was recognised as “hugely distinctive” by brand expert Wally Ollins (On Brand, 2005).”


Fold logo design

“One of the best-known names in the local social housing sector, FOLD is a brand that rests upon a fundamental central value – protection. Protection of the elderly, the infirm, the disadvantaged. Our brandmark balances contemporary typography with an abstract icon that exudes qualities of embracing, encompassing, surrounding; protecting.”


MAG logo design

“Charged with encouraging government to embrace creativity and innovation within the spheres of architecture and urban planning, MAG is a brand that deliberately aims to challenge the mundane.”


Origin logo design

“First known as the Belfast Fertility Clinic, we renamed Northern Ireland’s only private IVF facility as Origin, a brandname that sums up the entire essence of the brand. Friendly, contemporary type and a simple graphic reminiscent of the symbols for male and female, complete the appropriate identity.”


Capella logo design

“Capella is a high-tech product design SME named after a star in the Auriga constellation. Working with the brand since its inception, our identity solution is deliberately challenging and beyond normal horizons. This is the core of the brand.”


Biomara logo design

“This small but highly innovative retail brand sells mostly in Europe and the US. Our client wanted a brandname that pointed towards the pharmaceutical nature of the product and hinted at its Irish roots. Mara is Irish for sea, the source of all the brand’s raw materials.”

Distinctive work, and from a gorgeous office space (click the image below for a closer look).

McCadden Design office Belfast

Belfast skyline

More projects on the McCadden Design website, and more Belfast design studios to follow.


October 26, 2009


Beautiful offices! I like some of their work, but others don’t appeal to me quite as much. Fold has a little too much of the ‘magic swoosh’ to it, and MAG is just a bit too jarring and flimsy. I think it’d work better with a heavier lineweight or some geometric uniformity.

Thanks for the thoughts, Stephen, Ian. Seeing a nice design office like this, overlooking Belfast, puts a slightly different spin on the city for me. It’s all too easy to feel separated from the local design community when working from home.

After doing logo design after logo design the last few weeks I have to say I now appreciate more than ever the work that goes into simple logos like these that convey a message.

When we see simple logos it is easy to say “I could have done that!” But it takes a great designer to be able to distill the feeling of a company into a single logo. These are great.

I spent a week in Belfast in 1996 and was struck by the incredible energy and creative spirit. Nice to see that the design work more than exceeds any expectations I had from my brief stay. Great work (and a beautiful city).

Some great examples here from a well-known designers. I’d have to say their design style is very evident in each of the logos, you can see their input on each, however they are all equally unique and interesting.

I particularly like the Titanic Quarter design, with the name and funnels it is immediately evident what the design is referencing, yet it is a modern take and actually rather simplistic.

The Capella logo is also particularly good, it doesn’t take any reading of the company description to work out they are related to sciences in some manner. Again this shares the same approach as Titanic Quarter, as it’s relatively simple design and usage of a single colour shows the trademarks of McCadden.
Looking forward to more company profiles in the near future.

Belfast has come a long way since 1996, Matthew. I hope you’ll have another chance to visit one day, and I’m glad you found it a nice place to see.

Cheers, Stephen. I’ll showcase more local studios in the near future.

Thanks for everyone’s other comments, too.

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