Shopfront signs for Dundee dentist

Window film and cut out letters in Dundee’s busy Commercial Street.

Cut out letters Dundee

In April 2021, Sheham ElGamal contacted me after a referral from designer, Stuart Lindsay at Pulse North. Stuart helped Sheham create an identity for his new business, Scottish Dental Implants and Cosmetic Dentistry.

Sheham planned to renovate a large vacant shop in Dundee’s city centre and lots of decisions were presented. Sheham was unsure of what he wanted so he contacted me for advice.

Signs for shops Dundee
The shop before renovation

After speaking on the phone, Sheham and I met on site to discuss his business. Sheham wanted the shopfront to convey the values of his dental practice: professional, trusting, and welcoming.

Planning signs in Dundee’s city centre

Signs for windows Dundee
Removing the previous window graphics and glue

Some local authorities have stipulations for the types of signs permitted in their district. As well as signage installation and shopfront colour restrictions. Sheham’s architect requested details of the signs for submission to the council.

We looked at nearby businesses and Sheham liked the 3D effect on shop signs. With lots of options to choose from, I advised Sheham about materials, finishes, installation methods, longevity, and costs. Our discussions helped Sheham to decide which option would suit his vision and his budget.

Flat cut letters Dundee
3D effect with the flat cut letters

I also advised Sheham about the previous sign’s screw holes and how to fix them. As well as the existing vinyl applied on all of the windows. New etched vinyl would replace the previous vinyl and allow privacy for the two treatment rooms inside.

Following artwork revisions, I provided specifications for the signage. Subsequently, council approval was granted and the practice was another step closer to opening.

Flat cut lettering out of Perspex

Sticking out letters Dundee
Metallic gold vinyl applied to the cut out crown

Flat-cut lettering or cut out letters are shaped from sheets of substrates. Acrylic, aluminium composite, foam PVC, and MDF are commonly used materials. Most cut out letters on Dundee shopfronts are shaped on large CNC router tables. And some can be shaped by hand with a jigsaw.

Flat cuts are often fixed to surfaces with cylindrical barrels behind each shape. But SDICD would be fixed directly onto the fascia using high bond, double sided tape. This meant the fixings would not be visible.

Sheham opted for 10mm thick, glossy white Perspex. With just enough depth for the dimensional effect, the letters protrude off of the fascia and create a shadow.

The crown in the logomark is gold. This was covered with metallic gold vinyl, then the letters were ready to install.

Installing the flat cuts and window vinyl

Shop window signs Dundee
Interior applied etched vinyl

The renovation was nearing an end and I visited to replace the windows’ etched film. Previous graphics were gradually peeled off and gum residue was removed.

The new etched film covered most of the eight panes, with logos added above. The etched vinyl is semi opaque and allows light to pass through. Ideal for the large windows looking onto the pavement outside.

Cut lettering Dundee

I returned a few weeks later with scaffold and installed the long line of letters. Each bonded with a primer adhesive which grabbed tightly onto the painted fascia. Curious passers-by were already making inquiries.

Installation of the cut out letters was completed in one day. Along with additional interior vinyl, applied to the corridor doors inside.

Maintaining the cut out letters

Commercial Street is often busy with traffic. As such, dirt and grime gather on shopfront surfaces.

I advised Sheham to look after the signage by planning a cleaning schedule and washing the letters (especially the edges) to maintain their brilliance longer. The busy street traffic can eventually stain the signs’ gloss white finish.

Returning the investment

Cut out signs Dundee

Two weeks later, I visited the practice to add opening hours and contact details to the entrance panes. Sheham and I spoke about his six months renovation journey. He was delighted with the window graphics and cut out letters.

I was happy to learn that patients had already booked appointments before the practice was open. With no other marketing, the signs had grabbed the attention of passers-by.

Needing advice about 3D signage and cut out letters in Dundee?

Get in touch to find out more.