Every business needs a sign. And an awning can do visual wonders for virtually any business or even an entire building. But not just any signs and awnings. You need an eye-catching design in order to put signs and awnings to work for you.
That’s because they do work for you. Beautiful or decorative as they may be, signs and awnings are essential to draw people to your place of business and, in the case of awnings, protect pedestrians and customers from the elements. Awnings often serve double-duty as signs, too.
So whether you needs signs and awnings for a small store-front or a shopping center, eye-catching design is fundamental.
Big or small?
Signs and awnings don’t have to be big to make a big impact, but they do have to match the scale of your building. A tiny sign on a huge building or an enormous awning in front of a small shop doesn’t make visual sense. People will automatically look away, and that’s certainly not your goal.
There are so many different types of signs and awnings, you can create any look you want. And it needn’t be the obvious. Mapes awnings, which are constructed of heavy-duty aluminum, can be mounted flat against your wall to serve as your sign, with the awning portion protruding at a 90-degree angle, like a shelf. But the fascia of Mapes awnings can also be bowed or curved for considerably more eye appeal.
More traditional retractable or fixed awnings are generally cantilevered, extending from the wall at a downward angle. But why be limited by tradition? If you go with a different, more unexpected shape such as rounded you can give your awning design an eye-catching boost.
Colors and graphics.
With the advent of digital printing, many awnings can sport “anything, anywhere” graphics. Use your logo and thematic colors or designs. Even a short message. But remember than when it comes to signs and awnings, less is more. You want them to be eye-catching, not eye-watering – quickly and easily readable. So don’t overload them with too many visuals, especially words.
It’s in the details.
Whether your signs and awnings are constructed entirely of metal or covered with fabric, the “face” provides a background for your message — your name or something more. But the type of detailing you choose will give any sign or awning a finished look to make it stand out even better. Add a scalloped valance to a fabric awning. Or snappy copper finials or escutcheons to virtually any sign or awning. (Escutcheons are decorative metal plates that cover joints in the framing.)
As always, check the regulations.
States define broad building codes which could apply to your signs and awnings, but be aware that sometime local entities can devise devilishly detailed rules regarding what you can or can’t do.
Before you draw up your design – or if you have no idea how to go about doing that – arrange to meet with representatives of a professional awning company. Their graphic artists and designers understand what works and what won’t when it comes to signs and awnings. They’ll sit down with you and talk over your needs and expectations, then help draw up something that’s just right and uniquely you.
If they’re an all-in-one awning company – one that handles the entire process from design through production and installation — they also guide your project smoothly from beginning to end. You can be more confident you’re getting the best quality materials and workmanship, and professional installation to ensure your signs and awnings will be with you for the long haul. Because eye-catching design is only as good as its durability.
Photo Credit: tombothetominator via Flickr