These are just a very few of the testmonials sent to us by our fantastic customers!
Hi Steve Received the signs today and have just brought them home and opened them for the first time. They are superb! We are really delighted with them, thank you so much. Our gate posts have been built to sign level ready, although I think it will be a week or so before they are built in, but we will certainly send you a photo when they are in place. Thanks again Alison
Just received delivery, lovely job and thank you, really pleased with it. Chris.
Hi Helen, Thank you so much for making the plaque - it is really wonderful and suits the house style and surroundings beutifully. Thanks again, so much. Deborah
Dear Steve Just to let you know I have just received a very exciting box from you and it looks lovely - thank you! I will be giving it to my husband for Christmas as a celebration for our new home! Merry Christmas to you and your family ... it was the most efficient and painless project I have ever embarked upon ... you deserve all the work you get! Amanda x
Hi Steve, We have received our sign It's amazing, thank you. We are really happy with it Thanks for all your time on doing the different drafts for us. The border really works well Best Wishes Kerry
Hi Steve Just wanted to say how delighted i was with the house sign number you made for me - I love it! many thanks Terry
Hi Steve Our name plate has arrived safely and looks good thanks Lynn
Hi Steve It arrived this morning. I wish I had my grand children with me as the way it was wrapped was amazing! more layers than the best pass the parcel I have ever seen. Looks fine - I just need to fit it now. Many thanks. Rob
Hi, Steve. Received our house sign safe and sound. We are both absolutely delighted! It will be a while before it gets built into our wall but we will send a photo when the house is completed and it is installed. (Spring hopefully)! Thanks, once again, Mike
Hi Helen:))) The replacement sign has just arrived and it looks GREAT!!!! Thank you soooo much:))) I'm having the hubby hang it this afternoon. Again, THANK YOU!!
Dear Helen The stone has just arrived and it's fantastic .... My dogs helped me unpack it : ) Many many thanks it's perfect Kind regards Hilary
This is a general information article about the various methods of engraving stone granite and marble etc.
There are several methods of engraving natural stone, the ones most commonly used are "Etching", "Machine Cut", "Hand Cut" and the method we use "Deep Cut Engraving". This is a brief explanation of the choices commonly available.
(NB: When we refer to stone it includes any type of natural stone slate, granite and marble).
DEEP CUT ENGRAVING:
The lettering is deep cut into the solid stone using grit blasting, commonly refered to as sand blasting. A more accurate description would be "Sand Carving" as the process is more skilled and subtle than it first appears.
This method requires very high pressure equipment, careful preparation and a lot of time!
The layout and art work are created on computer, the size and spacing of the lettering is therefore completely flexible, and the quality and variety of the artwork is only limited by the ability of the company artist.
The lettering and any art work can be very cut deeply into the stone, this means the lettering and any art work "stands out" - it has depth, shape and shadow. So much so that 75% of our signs go out unpainted and are perfectly ledgible. They also have a very long life. These signs will still be readable after decades of weathering.
Etching has been around in various forms for a long time, most people will be familiar with pictures printed using etched copper plates.
The image is either scratched or burned into the surface of the copper with acid.
Stone slate and granite are of course much harder than copper but the principle is the same. The image is lightly scratched onto the surface of the stone with an engraving machine or very light blasting or is burnt onto the stone with a laser cutter. This creates a thin but permanant shadow image on the surface of the stone. On some materials such as black granite the image can be quite clear and readable, the problem is that when the stone gets wet the image becomes all but invisible. Therefore, stone etchers rely on coloured fill, paint or stain to highlight the image or letters.
The useful life of the sign depends entirely on the ability of the coloured fill to withstand weathering.
The advantages of etching are that it is possible to produce highly ornate artwork or very small text and the manufacturing process is relativly flexible.
Machine cut slate house signs are very common. You can spot them because unlike blasted or etched signs the letters are v-cut and the serifs of the letters tend to be rather heavy and rounded, unlike hand carved or deep cut lettering where the serifs are sharp.
The letters are cut using a large pantograph type machine. It is unusual to see machine engravers working on the harder stones such as Indian sandstone or granite as these types of stone are too hard for the cutting bits. The engraving using this method is deep and will still be readable when the paint has weathered away.
The disadvantage of this method is its lack of design flexability.
The type of font and the size and spacing of the lettering depends entirely on the available jigs. This is why most of these signs are priced per letter, longer names need longer pieces of slate or stone. Also the artwork and lay-out options available will be very limited.
Letter cutters are a rare breed nowadays. When I was an apprentice back in the 1960's (cue sad plaintiff music!) most headstones were still lettered by hand, using hammer and chisel, and tradesmen letter cutters were considered to be (forgive the pun), a cut above us masons.
The lettering was drawn onto the face of the stone in pencil the lay out and spacing was done largely by eye! Then each letter was individually carved with hammer and chisel. Some letters were v-cut and painted but the majority of the work was for leaded lettering.
The process is still the same today, the main change is that most hand letters cutters today have come to the trade the artists route, learning to draft the designs and fonts at art school rather than in the more disciplined arena of a masons workshop. The designs and fonts tend to be more artistic and free flowing, each piece of work the product of inspiration and skill. Thus modern hand cut inscriptions are considered to be works of art, rather than mundane products of craft.
Today finding a letter cutter is a problem and of course a hand cut house sign will (rightly) be very expensive. However if the engraved stone is important enough and you can afford the extra cost it may be well worth it!