Why Businesses Love the Versatility of Acrylic in Custom Signage
Material selection is a crucial consideration for commercial signage. The ideal materials are eye-catching and convey the quality and prestige of your brand. Beyond the aesthetics, those materials need to be durable, easy to work with, and cost-effective. That’s why acrylic is one of the most popular signage materials in the industry.
Contrary to popular belief, the term "custom acrylic signage" does not necessarily imply an exclusive use of acrylic. In fact, a significant number of commercial signs utilize acrylic in their construction, primarily for the front face of the sign to allow lighting to shine through. Acrylic’s exceptional compatibility with a wide range of materials offers boundless creative potential. Here's an in-depth look at how businesses can tap into the versatility of acrylic in custom signage.
Table of Contents
- Features of Acrylic in Custom Signage
- Combining Acrylic with Other Materials
- How Different Signs Utilize Acrylic in Construction & Design
- Illuminating Custom Acrylic Signage to Highlight Your Brand
- How Much Does Acrylic Custom Signage Cost?
Features of Acrylic in Custom Signage
Acrylic signage brings a variety of aesthetic and functional benefits to the table:
Opacity: Acrylic can be designed to be transparent, translucent, or opaque depending on the specific requirements of the sign. This characteristic can greatly influence the overall visual impact of the signage, especially when combined with illumination technique.
Color Versatility: From a crystal-clear finish that allows light to pass through and create a glowing effect, to matching the exact color shade of your branding, acrylic offers unparalleled flexibility in achieving the desired color scheme.
Ease of Fabrication: Acrylic can be easily molded, cut, or formed into virtually any shape and size, providing unlimited creative possibilities for sign design.
Thickness Variability: Acrylic can be produced in a variety of thicknesses based on need and size. This feature is important for both the durability of the sign and the visual effect it creates.
Combining Acrylic with Other Materials
Part of the magic of acrylic in custom signage is how well it synergizes with other materials to create breathtaking visual results.
Acrylic and Vinyl
One classic pairing puts vinyl covers over the transparent or translucent acrylic face to block out some of the light and create a silhouette or coloration effect. By precisely cutting out the letters of your company, for example, it creates the effect of the name being made of light itself. Alternatively, the background can be cut away, leaving vinyl letters on the sign to create a “photo negative” effect. Some designs opt for a perforated vinyl covering, which allows a bit of light to shine through, adding a soft glow.
Acrylic and Aluminum
When coupled with aluminum, acrylic creates a dynamic contrast as aluminum is not translucent. This can be used to create unique and visually striking signage designs, and focus light exactly where you want it.
How Different Signs Utilize Acrylic in Construction & Design
The versatility of acrylic in custom signage makes it a popular choice for a wide variety of sign types:
Channel Letter Signs: In these three-dimensional signs, each letter is made individually and can sport an acrylic face plate, offering a high degree of customization in terms of color and lighting.
Cabinet Signs: These signs typically feature a metal frame with an acrylic face. The acrylic can be printed with any design or message, and can be internally illuminated for visibility.
Simple Lettering or Panel Signs: For simple, cost-effective signage, acrylic can be cut to form individual letters or panels. These signs can be mounted directly onto a wall or other surface.
Push-Through Acrylic Signs: These signs involve cutting letters or shapes out of a thicker material, and then "pushing" a piece of acrylic through the cutout. This can create a bold, three-dimensional effect.
Layered Acrylic Signs: By gluing multiple pieces of acrylic together or using varying thicknesses, a 3D effect can be achieved. This can add depth and visual interest to your signage.
Pin Letter Signs: In these signs, individual letters or shapes are cut from a sheet of acrylic and mounted on tiny pins, creating a visual effect of the letters “floating” in space.
Pan Form Signs: These signs make use of acrylic’s malleability by creating molded plastic faces. These are ideal for companies that need to replicate the sign in high volumes.
Illuminating Acrylic in Signage to Highlight Your Brand
Acrylic's light-transmitting properties can be leveraged to create illuminated signs that enhance visibility and make a strong visual impact:
Push-Through Lighting: Instead of illuminating the entire front of the sign, translucent or transparent acrylic elements are inserted into cut-out portions of a thicker, non-transparent material. The design creates a visually striking 3D effect, with the acrylic components illuminated from behind, causing them to stand out prominently against the sign background.
Halo Lighting: For signs with opaque faces, LED lights can be mounted to shine on the wall behind the sign. This creates a "halo" of light around the letters or design, providing a sophisticated and modern look.
Back-Lit with Translucent Front Panel: For this style, the sign is lit from behind or internally, causing the entire sign to glow. This creates excellent visibility, especially at night.
How Much Does Leveraging Acrylic Impact Cost in Custom Signage?
The cost to include acrylic in custom signage can vary widely based on several factors, including size, thickness, and mounting or installation methods. While investing in high-quality materials is essential to ensure durability and longevity, it's also important to balance this with the potential return on investment. The best way to ensure that your commercial signage project ends with a stunning display that doesn’t break the bank is to work with an experienced professional signage company like Flexlume. Get in touch with our team of experts to receive valuable guidance on how to strike this balance and achieve the best possible outcome for your signage. We’ll work with you through the entire process - from design and planning to fabrication and installation.