So many sign makers seem to get stuck on a very tight definition of what a sign is. In the process they leave a lot of creative opportunities undone. A sign in our shop is defined as anything that draws attention to our customer's business, product or service. That can be a lot of things. And in our book the more creative the better.
At the Fox & Hounds Pub there is a cooler door behind the bar. It is a pretty plain door. Too plain in fact. The door goes to the giant walk-in cooler that stores the beer at the perfect temperature. The white metal door stood out like a sore thimb - especially with all the work we did in the area and the awesome woodwork done by others. The owner asked us to come up with a solution. No problem.
I've long wanted to route some creative door skins with our CNC router. It is an easy way to add character to a door. This was the perfect opportunity.
I took careful measurements of the door - tricky stuff with the large bulky hinges, handle and latches already on the door. We couldn't move them, so we had to work around them. Because the door is high traffic and with bulky cases of beer we decided to stay away from the edges about 3". This would save a lot of potential bumps and bruises down the road. Below is the concept for the door. Don't mind the yellow color as it is the default color of the computer program the file was created in. We'll be painting the routed high density urethane we use to match the rest of the woodwork in the pub.
I created a routing file with some cool woodgrain and topped it off with what will be a faux hammered copper plaque on the top. It will read CELLAR - advertising what is inside in a subtle fashion. With the embossed copper ceiling and faux copper pipe and tap work above the door it should look pretty cool. Some square headed rivets (to match what is on the doors elsewhere in the pub) finish things off nicely. The unsitely, formerly white cooler door will soon blend into the scenery real well.
Here's another shot of the door being carved on our MultiCam CNC router.
I strongly believe that it is important that we as creative sign makers offer our customers a broad range of services to meet their needs and even more importantly that we do it in the most creative way imaginable.