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Sparkling in Spokane

It may be nearly a century old, but this Washington practice sports a sharp, modern look.




NORTHSIDE VISION HAS been attending to the ocular needs of Spokanites since 1927. Its patient base is commensurately large and diverse — but the practice isn’t resting on its laurels. “Ideally,” says optician Katie McDowall, “we want to appeal to patrons that want services and products that aren’t found at other offices near ours.”

Aside from its long-established reputation for eyecare, it achieves this with the help of a distinctive brand that, for a practice with a near century-long history, is strikingly contemporary.

The key ingredients are Northside Vision’s modernist, eye-based logo and the lime green that the business has shifted towards using in all of its branding in recent years. “But just a taste,” says McDowall. “We don’t want to overwhelm the senses!” 

While used discreetly, the hue can be found to some degree on most of the office’s branded items, including business cards, name tags, water bottles, social media posts, lens cloths, gift bags and tissue paper for purchases, custom stickers, lime green chairs at the dispensing desks, a focal wall where Northside Vision showcases some of its bold frames, and even the custom chandeliers that grace the optical.

Outside designers were brought in to help with the branded bags and business cards, and many of the printed items were sourced from MOO. Says McDowall, “They offer fun, memorable templates. For most of the items however, we have used our team’s creative abilities.” 

Asked what, if any, outside references inform its look, McDowall jokes: “Is it bad to say Pinterest?” (Not at all, we say.) “But really, the science behind colors and how they affect people’s moods helped with the inspiration, as well as the ultimate goal of the practice of creating a unique, memorable experience.”


McDowall urges other eyecare biz owners to keep their branding consistent within their offices and across social media and fliers/mailers, as people are drawn to consistency. “Don’t be afraid to go bold,” she counsels. “Look at other practices across the country that have done it well to draw on inspiration.” 


After years covering some of the farther flung corners of the world of business journalism, Heath has more recently focused on covering the efforts of independent eyecare professionals to negotiate a fast-changing industry landscape. Contact him at [email protected]


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