Neon signs have been a common feature in interior design for decades, and for good reason. They’re eye-catching and provide a quick and effective way to communicate a message.
In the past, these signs were made with glass tubes and filled with neon gas that glowed when an electric current was applied. However, this meant that even expensive custom neon signs were fragile, prone to burning out or breaking, and limited to basic shapes and designs.
With the advent of LED lighting technology, and with long-lasting and adaptable LED neon replacing the older gas and glass models, LED neon signs are more durable, more affordable, and more versatile than their predecessors.
In this article, we’ll focus on lettering for custom LED neon signs, especially what to consider when planning your sign.
LED neon sign lettering
Lettering in LED neon signs is used to portray a particular message or brand persona. This might be a single letter (perhaps your initial), a single word, such as the name of your business, or a phrase signifying a feel-good motto, slogan or catchphrase.
These signs are popular with homeowners and businesses alike because they are incredibly customisable. They are available in a range of signs, colours and custom designs, and are intended to be eye-catching, even from a distance.
The signs are made from flexible LED strips which can mimic the retro appeal of traditional neon. However, LEDs are much more versatile and can be used to create custom lettering of your design, rather than the classic block lettering of old neon signs.
Why use an LED neon sign?
LED neon signs have a diverse list of applications, from wall art in the home to directing customers to the toilets in a bar or restaurant. Lettering is important for this because it is what will get your desired message or intentions across to whoever is looking at the sign.
Unlike a standard sign, the light emitted by an LED neon sign is attention-grabbing and hard to miss. It’s also much more memorable than a poster or similar advertisement, making it a more effective method of promoting your brand.
LED neon signs can be used indoors and outdoors (with the appropriate weatherproofing) and are much more energy-efficient than traditional neon.
What lettering is available for LED neon signs?
There are many different types of lettering available for neon signs including:
Channel lettering is made from metal or plastic and is lit from within, giving a high-quality, professional look.
Reverse channel letters include a translucent plastic front with illuminated LED lighting behind.
Open face letters are metal or plastic letters that have a backlight.
Die-cut vinyl is a self-adhesive, vinyl lettering that can be cut to any shape.
LED neon sign lettering considerations
Neon signs are a great way of communicating information in an eye-catching and memorable manner, but they can also be confusing if they're not designed properly! Some of the factors to bear in mind when planning the lettering for your LED neon sign include:
What is the neon sign being used for? A shopfront, an event, a business? This will help to determine the style and font of the lettering.
How large do you want your neon sign to be? Neon letters come in various sizes so that they can accommodate any space or budget!
At Neon Vibes we offer acrylic backing in three different styles:
Full board – a full rectangle or square which is approx. 6-8cm bigger than the design
Cut to shape – following the shape of the design with a 1-1.5cm outline. The centre of the design will usually be solid, but this depends on the style and size of the sign
Cut to letter – following the shape of the design with a 3-4cm outline
The lettering you use for your sign should inform which backing you use. For example, if you want a single letter, a cut to shape backing would suit. But if you want your sign to feature a longer phrase, then it may be more appropriate to opt for a full board backing.
Neon letters are available in a variety of fonts, so you'll always find something that suits your needs whether it's for formal use (like an office building) or informal settings like parties. The font is important for your lettering because it will influence readability.
The word or phrase you feature on your sign should reflect its intended installation location. For example, if the sign is for your workplace, it should have a degree of formality appropriate for a business setting. But if the sign is for your home, you can be a bit cheekier!
Ideas and inspiration
With Neon Vibes you can create a custom LED neon sign or logo featuring your chosen word, phrase or design. However, we also stock an amazing selection of ready-made signs that you can use for inspiration if you’re stuck for ideas.
All you need is love LED sign
This is our happy place LED sign
Frequently asked questions
What colours and fonts can you have on your LED neon sign?
Neon signs can be a great way of advertising your business or event. Neon lights are available in many different colours, so it's easy to find something that suits the look you're after.
Neon letters come in various fonts as well. Choose from classic typography such as Arial and Helvetica if you want something timelessly elegant; while more fun and funky fonts are also available for more informal settings.
What are the options for mounting an LED neon sign?
Neon signs can be mounted in a variety of ways. You could choose to hang it up with some string or wire, or even mount them on the wall using brackets and screws. Neon lights are very lightweight so they're easy to move around as needed too - just make sure that whatever method you use will keep your Neon sign secured where it needs to be.
If you've got any questions or need some expert advice, don't hesitate to get in touch.