A few years ago, we made a classy little round sign for a place called ‘Whynot Farm on Snow Creek‘. Every year, we make hundreds of handcrafted farm signs, for customers ranging from tree-changers with a few acres of land to serious broad-acre ranchers. The Whynot Farm sign was a bit different, though. It had a well-designed logo and a name that sounded like a play on words. What sort of a farm was this? After a few emails with Heather Davis, I found out more of the story.
Two years ago, Heather and her husband John studied sustainable farming under the tutelage of Joel Salatin, the self-described ‘Christian-libertarian-environmentalist-capitalist-lunatic-farmer’ from Virginia. With the help of their sons, they bought a piece of land and started putting some of Joel’s techniques into practice.
(Heather): The farm consisted of 25 acres on Snow Creek in the Love Valley of the North Carolina Piedmont. ‘Whynot Farm on Snow Creek?’ It’s a question and a farm name all in one. Next came the chickens, pigs, alpaca herd (twenty-six head), sheep, geese, ducks, rabbits, quail, et-cetera. We are now supplying two chefs, four restaurants and dozens of local farmers’ market customers with delicious, pasture-raised, all-natural, hormone- and antibiotic-free meats for their discerning customers and families.
And the Danthonia sign? It was a wedding present from some dear friends, as was the chicken sculpture.
The logo was designed by Type Work Studio, in Buffalo New York.
(Heather): It was a fun project. We wanted a professional look for our new business so we invested in a logo, brochures, a professionally-designed website, stationery, etc. I believe these things create an appearance of gravitas, credibility and substance that every new business really needs.
More recently, Heather & John decided to open a farm shop in nearby Love Valley. It’s a town like few others in twenty-first century North America. The population stands at ninety, and no cars are allowed within town limits – only horses, wagons and pedestrians. The Davis’s purchased the ‘Old Jailhouse’, a small wooden structure in the middle of town. Out of respect to the building’s history, Heather asked us to created a hand-painted, western-style sign to mount on the false front.
This was our first serious hand-lettering job and naturally we had to include some carved & gilded type as well. Here’s a few images of the process: