Alexander Isley's Homage to Vignelli's Subway Diagram

Alexander Isley Inc. (West Redding, Ct.) presented the latest offering from their ongoing collaboration with Blue Q, purveyors of quirky, impeccably crafted lifestyle products. Blue Q specializes in making things you don't think you need until that day when you suddenly realize your life is hollow and the only way to make things right is to buy a tote bag or pair of novelty socks with attitude. It's a good business plan.

Alexander Isley Inc. has designed over 70 life-changing things for them. This time they asked the firm to create a subway themed tote bag. So here it is — their homage to Massimo Vignelli and his famous 1972 subway diagram (Massimo hated that people called it a map).

Train line names are boring, so they created new ones devoted to music, pasta, fashion, sins — all the things that make city life worth living. They made up a city with fake parks, lakes, and an airport.

The typography and graphics are slavishly true to the spirit of early 1970s Modernist graphic design (except for maybe the part where they worked in references to jelly donuts, '80s fashion, and The Monkees — but other than that it's right on).

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