Bringing back the old
We were delighted to team up with 200 Degrees for a second time, and what better location to put traditional methods of signwriting to use than on the beautiful Grand Hotel on Birmingham’s Colmore Row.
Using a combination of 23.5 karat loose leaf, 18 karat lemon gold transfer leaf and 6 karat white gold transfer leaf mixed with signwriting paints, we created window graphics the good old fashioned way.
Working on a busy construction site is never ideal for many aspects of sign installation. This is even more so for applying gold leaf. Ideally we would lock ourselves up in a quiet, clean coffee shop once everyone has gone home, ensuring that it is dust free and draft free!
Working around other site users we had to clean the windows thoroughly using whiting to remove all traces of grease and dirt. We marked out there the image was to be applied and then sign painted the outline. Once this had dried, we applied the lemon gold to the centres of the letters. We then mixed gelatin with distilled water and applied it to the windows before applying the loose leaf.
As the owners did not want ‘perfection’ we had to ensure that there were sufficient imperfections in the gold, making it appear rustic and old.
Once all of the gold had dried, we burnished it using cotton wool, backed it with several coats of clear varnish and cleaned off the excess gold.
Let the sign painting begin
All of the external signs were sign painted using one shot signwriters paints. These were mixed to create a warm white which is in keeping with the 200 Degree brand.
Coning off Colmore Row on a busy week day to erect a scaffold tower is always fun! As is the interest generated in us doing what we do best. For the day, out signwriters were celebrities. Onlookers watched as we chalked out the logo and pattern and begin to sign paint.
From the outside in...
Like most well brand orientated companies, 200 degrees gave a lot of importance to what goes on the inside of their premises. That is why they asked us to hand paint directional typography. For this we used chalk to do the outline and masonry paint to fill in the graphic.
We also created laser engraved menu boards from birch ply to add to the overall atmosphere of the coffee shop.