I love the treatment of type on old carved and painted signs. There is something much more human about the way they communicate. The fact that the real hand of a craftsperson has carefully rendered them seems to give them a soul of their own.
They add an element of surprise to the urban landscape, a whispering remnant of a time that could never return. A time when milliners, ironmongers and chandlers were standard on the high street.
I recently came across a great collection of old (and a few select new signs) on the Typecity UK tumblr. There is only a small number on there at present but I’m sure this will grow. If you come across any worthy of selection use the hashtag #typecity on instagram to submit.
Here are some of my favourites from what is on there so far:
You can see the rest here.
If you know of any other great old signage / typography collections, please let me know in the comments.