Menu

VINTAGE ENAMEL SIGNS


Museum Rooftop Level

 

Enamel signs originated in the mid 1800s as a form of advertisement for food, household items, petrol and a variety of services in the United Kingdom. Before the emergence of all-in-one supermarkets and multi-product stores, specialist shops selling only one type of product were usually the norm. Hence, enamel signs became an effective advertising tool to indicate to shoppers where they can find specific products they were looking for.

Also known as ‘street jewellery’, enamel signs were made through the process of vitreous enamelling where coloured glass were fused to iron plates. Since enamel signs were often displayed in the outdoors, vitreous enamelling also ensured that the enamel signs were waterproof and able to last long. In addition, catchy phrases of specific products were also included in the brightly coloured enamel signs thus making enamel signs an effective branding tool for companies to set them apart from other similar products.

In The Public Galley’s enamel collection, the enamel signs on display will give you an insight to the daily lives of the middle-class consumers in the 1800s to the mid 1900s before they were replaced by temporary advertising hoardings in the 1950s.

OUTERSPACE

LOOK OUT FOR THESE ENAMEL SIGNS AT THE MUSEUM
JONES' SEWING MACHINES

Curated under the Theme of: Tasks At Home

S

S

 

MAKER:

Unknown

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

Unknown

YEAR OF MAKE:

Unknown

CAMPBELL SOUP

Curated under the Theme of: Delicacies of the Middle-Class

For the uninitiated, enamel signs were common advertising tools in olden day grocery stores and markets. We’re proud of our big enamel sign collection, but perhaps the one that we prize above all else is that of this unique 1960s-derived Campbell Tomato Soup sign.

Aesthetically it’s modelled to look like the brand’s iconic brand of canned soups, but what makes this the most iconic (and valuable) is the unusual curvature of it that gives it a three-dimensional look—a design trait unheard of during that era.

MAKER:

Unknown

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

Unknown

YEAR OF MAKE:

1960s

BOVRIL

Curated under the Theme of: Delicacies of the Middle-Class

MAKER:

Unknown

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

Unknown

YEAR OF MAKE:

Unknown

HORLICKS

Curated under the Theme of: Infant Care

MAKER:

Unknown

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

Unknown

YEAR OF MAKE:

Unknown

PETER WALKER LAGER

Curated under the Theme of: Industrial Alehouse

MAKER:

Unknown

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

Unknown

YEAR OF MAKE:

Unknown

BRADBURY'S CYCLE

Curated under the Theme of: Infant Care

MAKER:

Unknown

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

Unknown

YEAR OF MAKE:

Unknown