1st September 2017 Andy Nash

What’s the best type of vinyl for your graphic vinyl project?

There are many reasons why we love vinyl, including being colourful, affordable and efficient. At A1deSIGNS we have lots of styles and types to choose from, our bespoke vinyl signage will really make your business stand out.

When considering the style and design you’d like, it’s important to consider that there’s a variety of types when it comes to vinyl signage, especially when considering the use, if it’s for interiors, exteriors, or on a number of different surfaces. Another factor to include in your choice is the duration you need the vinyl for. For standard vinyl types there is usually a 3-5 year range and a 7 year + range. For special vinyls or exterior uses, the lifespan can be reduced however when used internally in a environment shielded from harsh temperature changes vinyl can last longer.

The vinyl that’s available includes…

Transparent vinyl
The clue is in the name, this type of vinyl is see-through, it comes in a number of colours allowing the chance to be really creative with your design. This type of vinyl tends to be thicker than other vinyls and is popular for interiors including indoor glass projects. This type provides great effects should different colours be overlapped as well as the ability to print a number of colours onto a wider colour palette.

Translucent vinyl
These vinyls look quite solid but they are designed to let light shine through, making them perfect for use on light boxes. Signs made with these vinyls can come in a wide range of colours and have a satin finish.

Matte vinyl
Matte vinyl is similar to matte paint, it has a flat and non-reflective surface. Designers and architects tend to prefer this look to the shine of gloss vinyl. This vinyl is ideal for use on panels both inside and out and can be applied to either side of a window.

Gloss vinyl
Gloss vinyl is similar to gloss paint and has a shiny surface, it comes in a number of colours. Like the matte version gloss vinyl stands up to the weather much better than other vinyls, so it’s a good choice for exterior areas.

Metallic vinyl
Metallic vinyl come with both gloss and matt finishes and the colours tend to be gold, silver, bronze and copper. Pearlescent, galvanizes and graphite are also available in metallic vinyl. These types of vinyls are usually used for decorative effects and tend to be placed on panels and glass doors. Some can be created with added protection so they can withstand the weather outdoors. The life span on these tends to be shorter than the standard ranges due to the way it is manufactured.

Stencil vinyl
Stencil vinyl comes as a standard in one or two colours. It is not used for decoration, but as a tool to help create the decoration. Stencil vinyl is primarily used in one of two ways ; either to block out the inside of a shape, so that the surrounding area can be treated in a different colour or as the reverse, blocking out the surrounding area so that the inside can be treated.

Reflective vinyl
Reflective vinyls are mainly used for road or road safety signs as well as emergency vehicles like ambulances and police cars. During the day they tend to look like white or black strips, but by night time they will reflect light shone on them and can attract attention or provide a warning. They also come in yellow and red variants.

Blackboard vinyl
This vinyl is textured black and is designed to be written on with chalk or chalkboard pens, with the ability to be wiped clean with a damp cloth so they can be wrote on again. They’re thick and easy to apply making them a popular option for schools for their menu boards, children’s playrooms and office noticeboards, as well as restaurant menu boards.

Frosted vinyl
Frosted vinyls are great when it comes to glass, they let light through but you can’t clearly see through them so they’ll also protect your privacy and stop people from walking into glass panels and doors. They provide an etched, sandblasted or textured glass look.
There’s a number of frosted effects to choose from for your signage, as well as patterned finishes.

Photo luminescent vinyl
This type of signage is designed to gather light during the day so it can release the light when it’s the evening or when the light has been switched off. This type of signage is popular for safety signage in offices.

Printing Vinyl
While the majority of the above are designed to cut and applied either as blocks or designs and are great for creating designs that use individual blocks of colour, there are times when you need a gradient of colours, or a colour not available within one of the above ranges. This is where printing vinyl comes into play. As a standard product, it is simply a thick white vinyl that can be printed onto, allowing for intricate designs, making it ideal for brand logos or matching to precise colours. There is also a premium version available called Contravision, that when applied, allows for one side to be seen through with the other side displaying only the design, making it great for when privacy is key.

Whatever your vinyl signage needs, if you have any questions regarding the type or the suitability of the ranges we offer, please feel free to contact us.