The DILEMMA fonts were inspired by the evolving logo of Sears.  One font in the set is illustrated in black and white above: two black stripes and one white one. The other two fonts have one stripe each.  When overlapped and assigned different colors, they can be used as in the blue illustration, creating a tricolor effect (counting the background).

Dilemma_sears1The oldest of these Sears logos has all caps and a white stripe with gaps that suggest overlapping tracks (the best of the three, in my opinion, and still on my local Sears store.)

Dilemma_sears2Then they simplified it and the stripe became more like a regular inline, apparent in all 4 letters.

Dilemma_sears3Now they’ve gone to upper- and lowercase (like their old, old logo?) The inline is especially awkward in the a and r.  Better with gaps.

For my fonts, I’ve chosen the best of each.  Upper- and lowercase with the white line broken at key points.  The basic font resembles an extra bold oblique Helvetica, of course, with some necessary alterations such as the G.

Each font includes upper and lowercase, numbers, punctuation and international characters.

From its iconic Big Book catalog to the Vincent Price Collection of Fine Art, Sears is a part of American pop culture. They’ve done a fine job of presenting their history at the Sears Archives.  Well worth a look.

Dilemma_houseThe house at the left is part of that history, one of thousands of houses in scores of attractive models sold by Sears in the early 20th century.  This is the catalog picture of the “Ferndale” model that I grew up in!