Rumination 54: Quail Bags

Just over a month ago on, I posted a photo of an amusing shop sign, which you can see along with my caption below.

Mmmm… Kentucky Fried Handbags are fingerlickin’ good…

I loved the idea that a shop would not only come close to using the full name ‘KFC’, but also go for a design in red and white. Of course, they didn’t sell chicken there as far as I could see but it was fun to consider.

Fast-forward a month and I spotted this sign in a different local shopping centre, which aroused my suspicion about the true nature of their business.

Sure, they dropped the red and white for this sign, however there’s an important spelling mistake here that could change everything. They didn’t write ‘quality different’ (whatever that means); they wrote ‘quailty different’. I checked the Oxford English Dictionary and no such word as ‘quailty’ exists there.

I see two possible answers to this mystery. The first is that the shop owners have absolutely no idea how to spell and the people who made their signs don’t know how to spell either. (That’s the boring answer.)

The second possibility is that ‘quailty’ is in fact a bizarre fusion of ‘quality’ and ‘quail’, suggesting the use of tiny birds in the production of the handbags for sale. Whereas the hint of poultry came from the use of red and white on the first sign, the second sign also includes another strange visual element to suggest this. The graphic next to the text may look purely like some odd version of the initials ‘KF’ but I believe that these are in fact supposed to be feathers.

Let’s be serious now: I’m being totally ridiculous about this. Of course, there’s no way that these bags are actually made from quails, nor are these shops preaching a love for KFC. My point here is that if you don’t bother to spellcheck your signage or carefully consider the presentation of your branding, consumers’ imaginations can run wild. If you’re thinking of launching a brand, product or service, take the time to make sure that your messaging is clear. Otherwise someone who spends way too much time thinking about this stuff will write about you online.

Follow @martinfeld on Mastodon.