Why do I need a custom sign shop?

No matter what industry you work in these days, you have to be aware of who your competitors are and what they’re up to. What services and products are they offering? What are their price points? What have they got that you don’t? Increasingly, we have to be aware of the growing competition from companies whose entire business is operated online.

This isn’t news to anyone, including your customers. As the economy shifts and changes, customers are constantly searching for vendors who can work quicker, cheaper, and better. Or they’re figuring out ways to do the work themselves using how-to videos and suppliers. How does a brick and mortar business survive in that world?

As a company that services businesses, we try and help our customers navigate the paths of brand visibility while dealing with that exact scenario in our own industry.

metallic lobby sign

Brushed aluminum veneer on acrylic

What’s the point of a custom sign when I can get it online?

It’s inevitable. We get a call from a potential customer who wants a particular sign, and they want us to match the price they saw online. What do we say to that? We say, “By all means, if the internet store has the exact size and color and wording that you want, buy that sign.” We don’t want to waste your time or ours proposing something that we both already know you can get elsewhere for less.

BUT…

What if the sign you saw online doesn’t include the required ADA components? What if you want your sign in a very specific Pantone color to match your logo? What if the size of the sign you saw online is just a tiny bit too large to fit the space you want it to go?

What if you simply don’t know what you want yet and need an expert to guide you through the process?

custom signs, logo signs, window signs, salon signs, sign consultationNow, you need a custom sign company.

Signwave has the knowledgeable sales staff to walk through your physical space with you, and listen carefully to your needs. We can advise you on sizes, materials, and construction. We have talented designers who have worked with innumerable sign-making materials, with the creativity to develop a project that is unique to you. We walk you through all the steps of making that design a reality, working within your budget. We work with your town to ensure all signage is legal and permitted, taking that burden off your plate.

We have the industry contacts to coordinate all aspects of your branding project, from an illuminated sign on top of a 10-story building, to the etched lettering on your office doors, even to the branded napkins you set out for your corporate events. And we have skilled installers to put everything together for a finished project that potential customers can’t ignore, no matter how distracted they are by their mobile devices.

WE are a custom business, to help YOU stand out in the crowd as a custom business. Attract the customers you want so you can keep them with your stellar service, unmatched by any faceless internet company. It’s working for us, and we can make it work for you too.

Painted HDU sandblasted sign

Digital Signs: The Next Step in Sign Evolution

In an increasingly digitized world, digital signage is the next and most logical transition for businesses that want to attract tech-savvy consumers, young people, and customers who simply enjoy technology that is new, interactive, and cool. Examples of digital signage include the entertainment/payment kiosks at your restaurant table, menu boards, up-to-the-minute flight schedule information in airports, and giant billboards in Times Square. All these types of signs provide information, are visually arresting, and can be changed at the tap of a keyboard.

Today let’s focus on the ubiquitous directory sign. Most buildings need them, and it’s very important that they are easy to read and up to date. A digital directory has a lot of advantages over traditional modular-style directory signs, foremost being the immediacy of updates. Not only can management instantly update tenancy information, but they can regularly refresh the design as well as create new and interesting advertising graphics for the tenants on site. Someone may be here to visit the office next door to yours to have their annual eye exam, but as they stop by the directory to find the office’s suite number they are greeted with a colorful ad for your shoe repair business, reminding them to stop by later with those boots that need to be resoled.

Arranging for a new digital sign at your office couldn’t be simpler. You don’t have to be a tech genius! Signwave will walk you through the process, which will include:

  • Onsite assessment where we visit you, take measurements, and talk about your needs.
  • Consultation services: together we work through Signwave’s initial proposal and pricing.
  • Hardware and software: determining which components fit your needs and budget.
  • Installation and commissioning: determining what contract work or permitting needs to occur, then overseeing the professional install crew on the day of installation.
  • Content creation and management: Our design team will create the design and content to your exact specifications.
  • Training and support: Once everything is installed and the content is ready, you’ll have all the training you need for the hardware and software, plus 24/7 phone support.
  • Ongoing service and program evaluation: As you use your service, we can make recommendations for changes or upgrades as you need them.

Our digital display package includes:

  • A high quality brand name digital display
  • Premier tilt mount, On-Wall Cabinet Enclosure, or In-Wall Cabinet Enclosure
  • Lifetime Software License
  • Content Design
  • First Year Content Management
  • Onsite Installation
  • 24/7 customer support

There are 3 different mounting options, to fit any space or budget:

The tilt-mounted directory is most cost-effective and easy to install.

The on-wall cabinet directory has added security because the wiring is inaccessible to the general public.

The in-wall cabinet directory has a seamless, professional appearance but has a more involved installation process.

Are you ready to bring your office into the digital age? Call Signwave at 631-761-9292 and let us show you how easy it can be.

Textiles – Your New Branding Medium

Recent breakthroughs in the manufacture of durable fabric media have opened up a new world of printed, washable fabric options for your signage. Custom printed fabrics do more than just decorate your office and shop–they integrate with your marketing plan in any budget to create interest and spur sales.

While dye-sublimated printed fabric graphics are everywhere–airports, trade shows, retail stores–what’s new is our ability to create beautiful custom decor items for your business or home using our onsite latex printer, with a durability never before available.

Expand your vision of “signage” by imagining how custom printed fabric can enhance your office or retail shop.

Custom branded pillow

Use a simple logo on a pillow cover to make your waiting area couch a comfortable resting spot AND a marketing tool. Use it as part of a window display for your hot new inventory–imagine shoes or jewelry resting on a cloth throw with your store’s logo.

Custom-printed curtains

Window draperies can promote your brand or set a mood. Fabric creates a soft divider between office areas compared to walls or cubicles, having a positive effect on customers and employees alike. Print your logo on a large curtain that will cover the glass on your salon space or conference room, sliding easily to one side when you want an open view. Signwave can take your project from concept to production, including sewing.* Or we can deliver a printed fabric for you to craft into your own one-of-a-kind item.

For the ultimate in fabric branding, create a unique piece of furniture. Custom chair upholstery conveys a message that your company is solid, long-lived, and deserving of trust. Use your company logo and colors, or match your interior designer’s site plan.

The infinite options available through design and texture will support your marketing by creating an instant reaction in all your visitors. Whether your company style is whimsical or serious or anywhere in between, Signwave will take your vision and create for you the perfect custom fabric for your interior design projects.

Call Signwave today at 631-761-9292 to get started!

 

*Ask us about pricing for including sewing in your project. Signwave does not upholster fabric but can contract the upholstery job for you.

 

Standoffs 101

What is a standoff?

A standoff is a small piece of hardware that mounts and attaches a sign to a wall. The three parts of the standoff are the barrel, the cap, and the wall screw. A standoff allows a sign to literally “stand off” a wall and bring it forward. This type of threaded separator is sometimes used in conjunction with another similar piece of hardware called a spacer. A spacer is unthreaded and allows for an entire bolt to pass through. Standoffs can be male and female to fit together, and are typically made from aluminum, brass, or nylon. A hole is drilled through each corner of the sign and standoffs are threaded through the holes. There are also edge-grip standoffs for signs that can’t be drilled through, that hang your sign by its edges.

Standoffs come in a variety of finishes and sizes. This metallic copper standoff is 1″ in diameter and stands 1″ off the wall. The sign has printed vinyl on the wall behind, plus both cut and printed vinyl on the clear acrylic panel, all mounted over a printed vinyl wallpaper for a striking, dimensional effect.

Why use standoffs?

Standoffs can support relatively heavy sign panels so you don’t need to worry about them falling off the wall. They can be used to make any sign stand away from the wall and to add a professional look to your signs. They’re commonly placed in each corner of the sign to create the most strength and support. Though standoffs can be used with most signage materials, most often they are used with acrylic, aluminum dibond, and plastic. Standoffs are available in a wide variety of colors, finishes and sizes.

Crisp metallic cut vinyl on a glossy black acrylic panel is accented with 1/2″ brushed metal standoffs.

What else can they be used for?

Other than signs, standoffs are most commonly used in the electronics field. They are put on top of the motherboard to separate the motherboard from the case to prevent an electrical short. There are also standoffs for LED signs, which are illuminated with LED themselves.

Clear acrylic with cut vinyl lettering backed with a second colored acrylic, using a double set of standoffs so both panels sit above the surface of the wall for a multi-dimensional sign.

Standoffs are an elegant way to elevate your sign to the next level. Their minimalistic, unobtrusive design highlights the beauty of your sign, and helps it catch the eye. Signwave can help you choose just the right size, color, and finish for the standoffs that make your signs stand out.

Standoffs come in all colors and finishes to ensure your hardware enhances the final version of the sign.
business sign, restaurant sign, community sign, signage, sign company, vinyl, privacy vinyl, etch vinyl, executive office sign, branding, privacy, window sign, glass sign, door sign, long island sign company, corporate office sign, window treatment

Make Establishments Exclusive with Privacy Vinyl

Does your office need to keep its information confidential but doesn’t want to sacrifice the natural lighting that large windows provide? Perhaps you want to insulate your storefront from harsh sunlight or the glare of headlights shining through the window? Privacy vinyl can do that job for you. Also known as “etch vinyl,” it can serve multiple purposes in signage.  Here are some ways privacy vinyl can help your business or establishment: Read more

color precision, color match, color perfection, color matching, sign color

Getting the Sign Colors Right

“Close Enough” isn’t good enough when it comes to your brand. Good signage has to match a business’ brand — everything from the establishment’s overall aesthetics, to the packaging, even their ad campaigns. If signage and branding don’t match, then recognizability will suffer as a result. A sign might be highly visible, but it won’t “click,”if it doesn’t connect with the product or business. But when it’s done right, when the sign colors and style match the brand, your signage will stand out and bring the customers in.  
Read more

Property sign for Brentmako, Long Island, NY

What kinds of signs do you need for your business?

There are so many types of signage that appear inside and outside of office buildings, commercial properties, hospitals and campuses. Each one gives an impression to all who work and visit there. What is your property signage saying? Let’s look at a few of the many ways your signage can help give your property appeal – or turn your visitors away:

Employee Entrance sign

Employee Entrance sign at Designatronics

Wayfinding and directional.

Are all parking lot entrances and exits clearly marked? Are the signs visible from the road, and from enough distance to assure drivers know where to turn in? Are the signs durable and attractive? Once in the parking lot, do visitors know how to navigate to the parking area and building entrance they need?

Exterior building signs.

Northport Wellness Center outdoor directory sign

Outdoor directory sign for a Medical Center in Northport, NY

Is the property management company clearly identified? Is branding of anchor tenants clearly visible? Is window signage used in attractive ways? Is all signage in compliance with local regulations?

A&E logo wall graphics

A&E logo closeup

Lobby signage.

Is there a directory of tenants that allows visitors to know how to reach their destination? Are all appropriate safety signs displayed? Is all signage in compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act? Are elevators, staircases and public facilities clearly marked?

We can help with a sitewide audit of your signage to make sure it is doing all it can to make your property shine. Fill out our contact form, or give us a call at (631)761-9292.

lobby sign

Is Dimensional Signage Right For Your Lobby?

We get many requests from companies in need of lobby signs with their logo. Some are moving to new office space, others are looking to upgrade their existing lobby signs. We’re always glad to discuss their concepts, answer their questions, and make recommendations.

Dimensional lettering mounted over custom wallpaper

Dimensional letters can be mounted over custom wallpaper

A look at our gallery will show that there are a multitude of material options and styles to choose from. One option is custom wallpaper with the company logo incorporated directly into the design. Logos can be rendered in vinyl directly to a painted wall. Alternatively, a glass, acrylic, metal or wood panel can be mounted to the wall and flat vinyl of various colors, textures and sheens can be applied to it.

The most popular option is to render the logo with dimensional letters and logo shapes. These can be fabricated from acrylic, PVC, metal, wood or various other materials. They can have various finishes – gloss or matte, metallic or clear, wood grain – the imagination is the limit. The dimensional characters can be mounted flush to the wall, separated from the wall on spacers, or mounted to a backer panel made of an equally dizzying variety of material and shape choices.

dimensional lettering close-up

Depending on the material chosen, the narrowest stroke width is about equal to the thickness of the material.

In order to render a logo as a dimensional object, the letters must have an adequate minimum thickness (or “stroke width”) to be manufacturable. Even the most precise laser cutter or strongest acrylic will have challenges with certain designs. Depending on the material chosen, the narrowest stroke width is about equal to the thickness of the material. Thus, if you wanted to render a logo in ½” acrylic, consider that the minimum line width should be ½” as well.

But what if your company logo includes thin, delicate lines? There are still dimensional options available. Logos can be routed, engraved or carved in relief – on metal, wood, acrylic or PVC. A skilled and creative signmaker is up to the challenge of creating even the most challenging designs in a dimensionality that will upgrade your office lobby instantly.

Let’s talk about what works best for your logo in the interior space of your lobby. Drop us a line or call 631-761-9292 to arrange a consultation.

 

grand “lightning” logo rendered spectacularly in window perf

Signage Speaks Volumes for a Distributor in Islandia NY

If Your Walls And Windows Could Talk, What Story Would They Tell?

When Helios Tattoo, a manufacturer and distributor of premium inks, needles and supplies to the tattoo trade moved into their new headquarters in Islandia, NY, they wanted to make sure that their lobby, showroom and offices broadcast their brand to all visitors. That’s where Signwave’s specialties lie – in truly custom and unique brand identity designs for corporate environments.

Projects for the Helios headquarters include custom wall treatments

Projects for the Helios headquarters include wall treatments, lobby signage, window and door graphics, warehouse signage, and vehicle graphics.

We started with an overall consultation to understand what they were hoping to achieve with this project. We knew that we needed to provide wall wraps for their tattoo studio, window graphics to make an exterior impression, and a one-of-a-kind lobby wall. We broke the project into separate phases and deliverables to assure that the customer was satisfied with each sub-project before moving onto the next.

Phase 1 was the wall wraps. We worked closely with the Helios designers to create the image files that would show their brand at its best. We selected a matte calendared vinyl for the walls that we laminated with luster overlam to minimize glare under the studio lights but still make the images pop. Only seven days after design approval, their first guest Pro Team artists were cheerfully creating their amazing body art in the newly-wrapped Helios Hideout.

Translucent etch vinyl and white cut vinyl achieve maximum visibility.

Translucent etch vinyl and white cut vinyl achieve maximum visibility.

Next came the doors and windows. The front door obviously needed to present their logo to the public, attractively and with maximum visibility. We used a combination of translucent etch vinyl and white cut vinyl to achieve this. With printed color logos on their other doors, they were ready to move on to the grand “lightning” logo, rendered spectacularly in window perf. Window perf is a perforated adhesive vinyl that is perfect for office window treatments. It permits light to enter (thus not blocking the view from inside) while providing a full graphical brand treatment for outside the building.

Phase 3 was completed last week. We brought a number of samples of various wall textures to their team for selection and they immediately settled on a dramatic faux wall texture of brown stones with grey grout. We needed a lobby sign that would create an unforgettable impression, so we created a PVC sign with embedded red LEDs to cast a halo effect on the wall behind. The result was an eye-popping, dramatic welcome to all Helios visitors.

Signwave’s team isn’t done yet. Additional projects for the Helios headquarters include wall treatments for the offices, warehouse signage, and vehicle graphics.
We’re delighted when customers are pleased with our creations!

PVC sign with red LEDs casts a halo effect on the wall.

PVC sign with embedded red LEDs casts a halo effect on the textured wall behind.

We’d love to help you design your interior and exterior spaces too.

Drop us a line or call 631-761-9292 to arrange a consultation.

Using color to identify subsidiaries in dimensional lettering

Building Client Confidence Through Office Signs

When the financial services organization The WizdomOne Group was moving into a new office suite in Islandia, New York, they wanted to create a reception area and conference room that cemented an impression of excellence in their visitors’ minds. They worked with a commercial interior designer for their furniture and carpeting, and called in Signwave to coordinate wall treatments and signage with their selected color palette. Signwave designed three separate areas of focus:

A reception desk backsplash sign.

Dimensional signs add a look of distinction to any professional office space. We recreated their logo on acrylic and metallic letters and shapes, and mounted them on spacers. We created a faux wood backer panel to give the whole welcome area a professional and luxurious touch.

A coordinated wall treatment for the lobby.

One challenge this company presented us with is how to show the four separate entities that were under their umbrella organization. We accomplished this by creating a wall treatment with acrylic stud-mounted letters, all in black, with one letter in the color of that subsidiary. Uniting them was a custom wallpaper treatment with a subtle print of their logo underlying it all.

Custom wallpaper for the conference room.

We brainstormed with the customer regarding what brand impression they wished to create, and developed a series of designs for their approval. All agreed that this custom “dictionary definition” look made the perfect impact. Our color managed print process created the image on textured wallpaper, in subtle shades of grey.

Visitors to their office are continually impressed with the beautiful signs that Signwave created for this new office space. Call us at 631-761-9292 for a free consultation to see how we might help boost your visitors’ confidence.

 

Lobby Sign for Long Island Tech Company

Lobby Signs In Line with Business Technology

Design and materials compliment one another in this bright contemporary business sign.

A glossy acrylic logo with dimensional lettering set the tone in the reception area for this forward-thinking company. We followed the contour of the gel-effect iconography to make it pop, with just the right color and contrast.

Vinyl graphics and lettering for the door reinforce the brand identity and welcome visitors, while allowing people entering and leaving to see through the glass.

The signage helps make the brand memorable.

Computer-Aided routing followed by hand-crafted finishing give a clean look to this company’s corporate ID signage in the reception area and on the glass door.

Hospital emergency sign

Responsible Wayfinding Signs for Healthcare Facilities

Directory signs make it clear to visitors which way to go


Multiple entrances. Long corridors that all look the same. Ongoing renovations and organizational changes.

How does a patient or visitor know which way to go? This is more than a matter of convenience in a healthcare facility. Visitors are already in a state of stress if they or a loved one are seeking treatment. It’s our responsibility to make the journey from their arrival to their destination as fast and frictionless as possible.

“We had a big problem with the visibility of the site signage at our Medical Center. Customers and visitors couldn’t figure out which entrance to use, and tenants were clearly unhappy,” explains Fran D, of the Northport Wellness Center. “We needed new directory signs both inside and outside our facility.”

Driving, walking, or waiting. Make it painless with well designed informative signage.

Women restroom sign close up

Let’s take a step back and define wayfinding in basic terms: a system of visual cues that guide visitors from point to point. This starts with vehicles approaching your property and finding the most efficient point of entry. It may end with a room number or other designation. It should guide the individual approaching your facility on his or her own, and also provide for safe efficient flow of traffic in crowded areas.

Directional signs, one step at a time.

Reception in dental clinic design in a modern style

In very large facilities, a common mistake is to try to list too much information in a single sign. Only the most pertinent information should be given at each intersection or point of decision-making. This technique, known as progressive disclosure, keeps the visitor from getting confused and eliminates wasted effort comprehending irrelevant information. At the same time, repetition is a good thing. Every 25 or 30 feet, it’s a good idea to remind people where they are and where they are headed.

Northport Wellness Center saw the benefits of updating their signage right away, and continues to evaluate and improve the flow of traffic throughout their facilities. Signwave presented us with options and discussed materials and pricing, matched our color and design requirements,” said Fran. “We’ve since called them back for several other projects, and are very happy with their recommendations.”

With clearly visible signage at all entrances, well placed directional signs, legible designation and relevant information, we can improve productivity and enhance the patient experience. This means fewer missed or late appointments, less distraction among employees from visitors stopping to ask for directions, and ultimately, a higher rate of visitor satisfaction.

Let’s review a signage plan for your changing facility. Call Signwave at (631) 761-9292 to get started.

 

Wayfinding signage system in a parking garage

ADA Compliance and Signage: Thinking Beyond Braille

Have you ever gone down the wrong corridor in a hospital or office building? It’s frustrating, right? Imagine how it feels if your vision is impaired, if you are having trouble walking, or if you are already suffering from anxiety. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) aims not only to ensure against discrimination, but also to avoid this kind of distress in public facilities.

Braille in the elevator? Absolutely. But it’s just a start.

Design your sign system to enable and empower all visitors.

Accessibility, even according to the law, is rather loosely defined. Any physical or mental impairment that substantially limits an individual from navigating your facility is considered under the ADA. Examples include standing, walking, speaking, breathing, seeing, hearing, learning, sitting, reading.

This applies to all kinds of signs: designation, means of egress, directional, and informational.

Both visual and tactile characteristics have impact. RV, or Raised Visual signs, can be tremendously helpful to someone whose vision is impaired and who may not read braille, including the chromatically challenged. Raised lettering can also help with lighting, as cast shadows counteract glare in changing daylight. Visual Only, or VO signs, are more vulnerable to lighting anomalies, but with consideration of surface finish and contrast we can maximize visibility and enhance the visitor experience.

Restroom signThe importance of legibility is easy to see.

While illumination, color, and contrast are important, viewing distance is also essential to consider. Font weight and size, the height at which signage is mounted, and the approachability of signs should be optimized for the widest possible range of readability.

Consistency is key — placement of signs should be predictable — but unique markers help to make sure the corridors don’t all look the same. Well placed murals, infographics or decorative motifs can help differentiate one hallway or building from another.

When your signage system guides, informs and assures the visitor, navigation is efficient and stress-free.

Let our expert team guide you in making your facility more accessible. Call Signwave at (631) 761-9292 to learn more.

 

 

Mounting a sign

Why Signs?

Signs are everywhere we look. Adhered to doors, windows, walls and floors. Hung from ceilings. Wrapped around cars, vans, trucks, boats, planes, skateboards and helmets. On poles in the ground, on brick walls, on edifices, on your desk or on your office building 600 feet off the ground.

Signs are there to tell you what to do, where to go, how to get there, and what the rules are. Signs are the most effective, yet least expensive, way to tell the world about your organization or business.

A sign is your introduction and handshake with those passing by, identifying your business to existing and potential customers. It is an opportunity to make a favorable first impression.
Most businesses, regardless of size, rely heavily on signs. On-premise signs tell people who you are and what you sell.

A sign is a critical piece of any business, and a good sign is a critical piece of a good business. We know that our customers are not sign experts, nor are we experts in our customers’ businesses. We will work closely with your team to create the right sign, using the right design, the right materials, on schedule, and on budget.