On 30 April 2013 the new King of the Netherlands was inaugurated in Amsterdam. You couldn’t miss it. With 1,100 flags and banners, more than 500 bus shelter posters and billboards, 30 decorated buildings, 140,000 paper crowns handed out, and animations displayed on various stages, Amsterdam put on its best face for the 1,100 journalists, newspapers, TV broadcasters, press agencies and camera teams from more than 50 countries.
In late February, the City of Amsterdam asked Koeweiden Postma to submit a design of the city dressing for the Royal inauguration. We were given just one week. The design brief was simple: create a design that is both festive and regal. The most important conditions were: the design cannot include a crown, nor can it show text or any images of the new monarch.
In short, decorate the space around the National Palace with the national colours red, white and blue, because the event is all about the King of the Netherlands. And add orange and ‘I Amsterdam’ around the rest of the city where people are celebrating Queen’s Day as they do every year. Orange is after all the colour symbolising the Netherlands at its most festive because of its association with our royal family, the House of Orange-Nassau.
During the very first meeting with the City of Amsterdam, we discussed possible symbols to use for the event, as we felt using just the colours would be insufficient. So we came up with the initials of Willem-Alexander. As a starting point of the design we used the existing monogram of Willem-Alexander, but without the crown. The rest of the design speaks for itself.
For the first time in more than 122 years, the Netherlands has a King again, which was certainly a reason to celebrate. Amsterdam had never looked so colourful.
For us it was a joy and honour to contribute to this event.
View more design work on the Koeweiden Postma website.