from the blog

Creative Wayfinding Signs for Founders

A man without a beer in his hands is a lonely tap waiting to be put to use. Imagine yourself trying to order a beer at a busy bar, while competing with everyone else for the attention of the bartender. People are snapping their fingers, waving money in the air, and you’re standing shoulder-to-shoulder, trying to avoid dipping your elbow in a basket of fries belonging to the guy next to you. You are not only disrupting the people around you, but creating traffic in the remaining space where servers need to pass through.

Cut out the fries and replace them with fresh artisan sandwiches, infused with an atmosphere brimming with live music, and hand-crafted beer. With their constant growth in popularity, Founders Brewing Co. needed a solution for this dilemma. Centered in the heart of Beer City USA, they are often operating with a full house of thirsty people who appreciate delighting their palates just as much as those who craft it.

It wasn’t too long ago when we received a call from marketing project manager, April Ford, who came to us in need of signs to direct people to the proper ordering stations. She wanted it to say something simple and to the point; ORDER BEER HERE. With the creative minds of both April and our project manager, Josh, they developed a vision for a sign that would not only attract customers to the correct location, but also complement the earthy and rustic style of the establishment. From start to finish, our hand-crafted signs pays homage to the hard-working men and women who brew beer for people like themselves.



Our project started off with routing out a sheet of 1/2″ sintra. This product is durable and is easy to paint. Each individual letter is trimmed by hand, insuring that the edges are smooth and tab free.


After the trimming process, Josh sprayed multiple coats of paint on the letters to resemble hammered steel. At this point, the letters have gone from looking plain and fragile, to strong and sturdy.


We used recycled wood to make up the back drop for our letters. Each piece was hand cut, sanded and stained. We used a few different stains on the wood, giving it a natural and warm effect, especially behind the contrasting colors of the letters.


Josh pre-drilled holes at the top and bottom of the finished pieces and mounted them with screws to a painted aluminum frame. He glued on the letters and centered them across the three sides. The signs were nearly finished at this point. The screw heads in the wood were covered up by a 1/2″ black aluminum strap, spanning the length of the sign. Not only did it clean up the look of the sign, but it also gave the impression of an old barrel used for aging beer or spirits. The only thing left to do was install overhead lights to the top of the sign using LED’s.


The finished signs are now hanging above the main bar in The Centennial Room. Finding the appropriate place to order a beer has now been made easier with this installment. At ICON, we appreciate being able to provide a creative and visual solution for Founders and their customers. CHEERS!

custom hanging signs