Putting the finishing touches to Lego buildings usually requires some kind of authentic-looking signage. I’ve used quite a few different approaches to making signs and adapted these as I’ve produced more buildings. here’s a few examples, and hopefully some useful tips from my experiences.
the Barrowland Ballroom sign is perhaps one of the most unique and distinctive signs of any building in the country. Take the sign away and you’re left with a fairly bland and slightly dilapidated 1950’s building. The only way to reproduce the sign was by using a photograph blown up and printed out on acetate. I used colour printable overhead projector acetates and then laminated them to give the sign added rigidity. Because of the size of it, I had to do it in two halves (there’s a join between the ‘o’ and the ‘w’!).
The Rogano’s lettering is important in giving it that classic Art Deco 1930s look. For the main sign I had to find the correct font and print it onto adhesive transparent paper. The font is called ‘Broadway’ and is quite easy to get hold of. The adhesive transparent sticker paper is less easy to get hold of and you need to order it from a specialist supplier. I currently use Mr Decal Paper which seems to be pretty good quality (picture below).
For the little ‘Oyster Bar’ sign I use a cropped photograph printed out onto plain white sticker paper.
For the Queens Cafe lettering I had a little bit of trouble finding the right font. But luckily I stumbled across a very useful tool called Font Squirrel. This site provides a font identifier tool where you upload a picture and it matches the font. It then suggests several suitable fonts and provides you with links to them. The font I use for the Queens Cafe sticker is called ‘nougat’ whcih seems appropriate!
For the Art deco style stained glass I use a cropped photograph printed onto the adhesive transparent sticker paper and mouted onto tranparent 1×2 bricks to let light through the back of it.
Like the Barrowland, the University Cafe signage is quite distinctive and not very easy to replicate. So the University Cafe signage is all made from photos, making it look more authentic. I originally tried printing the main sign on transparent sticker paper but the colour isn’t strong enough to show up when mounted on the black background. I then tried it on the white sticker paper, but it was too white! The best look comes from sticking the transparent print onto the white sticker paper (a bit fiddly but looks great).
The teas, coffees etc. signs are also made from photographs and printed directly onto the white sticker paper. The white sticker paper I currently use is Matt finish paper made by Evergreen Goods