SEVERAL TYPES OF WINDOW LETTERING MATERIALS
Window Signs- A Great Way to Get Attention! I’ve been lettering things that don’t move, and even a few things that do move, since I was a teenager. Glass windows are just one of the many surfaces that are prime real estate for signs.
There are many ways to letter a window. Most people now days use vinyl graphics, but back when I learned how to paint signs, we did it with real paint! Whether you decide to have someone use cut vinyl or paint for your window lettering, choose a reputable sign shop that has experienced sign technicians capable of designing the best sign for your space, which includes sizing it correctly, and specifying the best material options. Here are a few material options you could use: 23 K gold leaf (usually shaded and backed with black or a dark color paint); high performance opaque vinyl can be used, but it won’t allow any light from inside the doorway to penetrate the lettering colors, so be careful how you design the sign with opaque graphics since they could end up darker than you want; Translucent vinyl is a great choice to allow the color to shine through if there is good lighting in the room accommodating the doorway or window where the sign is installed; Specialty vinyls that appear to look like etched glass make nice choices as well, especially for professional office windows and doors.
Whatever you choose, consider Augusta Sign Company for the project!!
WHITE’S USUALLY THE BEST READ
More than likely, white lettering will be the best color for window letters. Since glass windows reflect their surroundings and tend to cast a dark background color or mixture of reflected colors that white lettering usually penetrates through the best, you can’t go wrong by choosing white lettering for window and glass door lettering; but or course you can make them any color you like.
Another thing that’s helpful for sign readability is outlining colors in white to help them pop out at you against the backdrop of a clear glass surface. Pretty much every business posts their hours of operation on the front door. Well, if it’s a glass door, chances are the letters are white in color. It’s just the standard for windows. And it’s so much easier now days using cut vinyl for the lettering versus having to layout and hand-letter all those words and then double-coat them!! Much easier today!
GOLD LEAF ON GLASS LOOKS SHARP
23 K Gold Leaf reflects the sunlight and stands out over any other type of window lettering. There is a high cost for this type of lettering however, so be prepared for sticker shock when you get the estimate from your local sign company. The reason the cost is so high is the material is truly solid gold. It’s just pounded down to a thin sheet and applied to the window or door and then varnished. Modern day materials once again can make the process easier using real gold that is embedded in a vinyl sheet that can be cut on the computer just like regular vinyl graphics. I used this type of gold leaf product for a sign I did for a local law firm in Staunton, Virginia, and it really looks great!
SUBTLETY MAY BE YOUR BAG
Gold leaf letters and white letters can really stand out, but sometimes you may want a more subtle look. This is the time you will want to consider etched letters. Ask your sign shop about “Etchmark” brand or similar vinyl sheeting in which you can cut your logos and letters, apply to the glass, and it looks like it was etched right in the glass.
I recently lettered an entry door at Eastern Mennonite University where I suggested Etchmark vinyl for the graphics. It looks very nice and it’s not that much more expensive than regular vinyl. I noticed that it is also available in colors which could make some really cool entry ways.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ALL AT ONCE
Last spring I lettered the main window for a local pizza shop. The pizza shop had several storefront windows, but the owner was just starting, so to save start up money he only ordered the main entry window glass to be lettered with his main brand. Then as he got settled in the business for a while, he called again to add another full glass window of bullet points listing all the many menu items available to passersby.
When you order signs, just like ordering food at a fine Italian restaurant, it’s good to know you don’t need to order everything all at once!
PROMOTING SPECIAL EVENTS
Entry doors and windows are great places to announce things like business anniversaries, or special seasonal deals. I lettered the glass door for a local printer who was celebrating 70 years in business! It’s a great thing to have all your walk-in customers see as they enter your space. 70 years is a long time and it must make them feel just a little proud of you as they come in to see you.
Another thing I used to do all the time was temporary window messages for a local car dealer. Every month or so, they would post a big, bright, colorful message across their entire storefront, all hand-painted in poster paint that was easily scraped off and replaced every month. Temporary window signs are great ways to keep people in touch with your business, especially if you’re located on a busy thoroughfare.
CONVERTING EMPTY WINDOWS INTO WAYFINDING KIOSKS
I once helped a university customer take a vacant room near the entrance to a hall and converted it into a wayfinding sign for students and visitors. I used translucent vinyl for the top palladian window and an opaque ACM metal sign for the big map below double-back taped to the glass. It looked really nice and became an important functional component of the college wayfinding system.
Whatever your need for window signs, contact Mark Hackley, owner of Augusta Sign Company for your next project. 540-943-9818.