Good Sign Design Starts Here

Feb 28, 2018 | Hand Lettering Text Appearance | 0 comments

We’ve all seen poorly designed signs, banners and vehicle wraps. They serve as a reminder that simply having a vinyl cutter doesn’t qualify one as a professional sign maker.

Paxton Signs strives to help our customers put their best foot forward. We believe your success is our success, and we’re here to help. Our 40 years of sign design experience guarantees beautifully designed signs, banners and vehicle graphics. Because, good sign design starts here. We utilize basic “rules” of design to create attractive and effective communication art. Here’s how we do it:

The fundamentals of good design

good design starts here exampleContrast, color and font use are three fundamentally basic and important elements of effective sign design. Because signs and banners are often seen by people driving by, it’s important that they are easy to read at a glance. Specifically, this means that without proper color and contrast and font spacing, signs are difficult to read. They confuse and don’t draw drivers’ attention. Therefore, keeping all sign elements simple, organized, and using contrast, helps your sign stand out. The “contrast” example shows how effective this is.

High-contrast color grabs attention. White on black or any intense color works well to create interest and draw attention.

A good design makes use of both positive and negative space. Positive space includes letters and images. Alternately, negative space includes everything around and in between. Ideally, negative and positive space should be well-balanced. The most common mistake is cramming too much information into the design. Consequently, there is no room for organization.

Font selection can make or break a sign design. We use different fonts that look good together. For example, we use one font for your main message and another for your secondary message.

Kerning – the space between letters – is an important design element. All letters are not the same size. Therefore, they need to be organized and spaced appropriately.

Good sign design makes a difference

good sign design starts here bad example

Unreadable fonts, poor spacing and poor use of contrast, or white/black balance.

Well-designed signs should have good balance between white space and other sign elements. Overly cluttered signs are difficult to read (see example shown). Too much information causes viewers to miss the message entirely. The poor use of white space and messy grouping of related elements makes this sign difficult to read.

The Milestone Square sign is an example of a well-designed Paxton Sign. It achieves all aspects of good design: Contrast, color, fonts, kerning, and white/black space. Finally, it’s finished off with an overall pleasing shape, interesting art elements, set in a faux stone monument wall.

Paxton Signs can create professional signs, banners, vehicle graphics and more. Let us help you design better, more effective, professional signs that mean business…and compliments!

We specialize in Communication Art!

Paxton Signs’ more than 39 year history includes hundreds of signs. Some are major monument signs, some small business signs. We’ve created ranch signs, lighted signs and signs made from recycled wood. We specialize in hand-painted and carved signs. We also offer vehicle and fleet graphics.  Paxton Signs provides a continuous variety of communication art for Fort Collins, northern Colorado and the surrounding mountain areas.

See more Paxton Signs handiwork on Pinterest at,

View Paxton Signs’ galleries at, or by using the menu bar, above. Contact us at 970-221-5519

Paxton Signs – Crafted Signs – Plain or Fancy

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