Stars, stripes and schwenkels

It’s not surprising that many graphic designers were flag geeks as children. Bold and graphic, a country’s flag is one of its most prominent visual symbols. It’s a strong identity that any subsequent logo would struggle to upstage.

New book New Wave Facts About Flags, published by Black Dog Publishing, seems to be targeted at flag aficionados with design nous as before getting onto the cultural meaning of flags, the book carefully dissects the technical nitty gritty of different flag shapes and patterns.

The cover
The cover

Those that was to discover the difference between a ‘reduced bend’ and an ‘inverted pile’, a ‘canton’ and a ‘lozenge’, can do before swatting up on ‘descates’, ‘schwenkels’ and the mythically-named ‘lanceolates’ – all historical flag shapes.

The book’s graphic, vector-heavy look perfectly mimics the simple, shouty, in-your-face style of flags, and content-wise there are some real factual gems in here, from uses of the flag in art through to some good old pirate know-how. Arrhg.

New Wave Facts About Flags is published by Black Dog Publishing, priced at £7.95.

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