by Kevin Walsh

I can’t believe I hadn’t noticed this classic awning sign on 8th Avenue and Bay Ridge Avenue in Dyker Heights, since I must have passed it every day on the way to the subway during the 1980s. I have developed a “Forgotten eye” since then. This was taken on a Saturday afternoon, so the place is likely closed now and the sign will be removed once the space gets another tenant.

There are dozens of “French cleaners” all over the place, but these days they have nothing to do with France except that the dry cleaning practice, done with chemicals instead of water, was apparently invented there.



chris December 26, 2014 - 7:31 pm

I thought awnings were those dark green canvas shades that the proprietors of stores used to roll and unroll with a metal hand-crank at opening and closing time ever day though i could be wrong…i could
be wrong

Kevin Walsh December 27, 2014 - 4:32 pm

I don’t have a better term for these signs. Anyone have a suggestion?

Kevin December 29, 2014 - 3:49 pm

According to ‘Signs NY’, they classify the Awning Sign as any sign that sticks out from the building. It can be fixed or movable, made of metal, fabric or vinyl.

A company called SignCraft in FL describes the Cleaners sign as an ‘Architectural Sign’. It can be a flat-surface sign (like the hand-lettered ones you love so much Kevin) or have 3 dimensional lettering applied (as in the sign above).

So calling them Awning Signs is probably not correct. Maybe you could coin a term for commercial identifying signage applied to the building surfaces.


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