Our makerspace's washrooms were in need of new signage. We quickly put together these fun gender neutral signs made from craft foam, with the help of our laser cutter.
YuKonstruct is the first makerspace in Canada's north. Our mission is to provide access to shared space, quality tools, available expertise, and a collaborative environment to help makers build anything!
Step 1: Materials
To make the signs we used sticky back craft foam. While it might not be the most durable material, it has the advantage of being very cheap and available in lots of bright colours. Another advantage is that the sticky backing means you don't need to worry about any fasteners or extra adhesives.
We also used a scrap piece of cardboard when positioning the craft foam in the laser cutter (see step 3).
Step 2: Designing the Signs in CorelDRAW
The signs were designed in CorelDRAW which is available on YuKonstruct's computers.
We drew a rectangle and positioned the standard restroom sign man and woman in it. We then copied the basic sign since we have two washrooms.
The accessories are what makes these signs fun. The vector images for the accessories were found on The Noun Project. The accessories were scaled to fit the people figures.
With the text tool we added "gender neutral washroom" to each sign.
Once we were happy with the look of the signs, we added a third rectangle guide and made sure all the rectangles were the size of a sheet of craft foam. The accessories were moved to the third rectangle and increased in size to 105% to account for the shrinkage that happens to foam in the laser cutter.
In object properties we set everything to have a hairline outline and no fill.
Noun Project Credits:
Hair - Madeleine Bennett
Hat - James Fenton
Cowboy boots - Theresa Berens
Pig tails - Kenneth Appiah
Bow - iconsmind.com
Step 3: Laser Cutting
We put a scrap piece of cardboard in the laser cutter and set the CorelDRAW file to only print the rectangle guides. We then cut the rectangles into the cardboard, with the settings lowered so as not to completely cut through the cardboard.
After cutting the rectangle guides, we set the CorelDRAW file to print the rest of the design, and not the guide lines.
We positioned the sheets of craft foam in the laser cutter bed, lining them up with the guide lines. To keep the foam flat and in position, we used masking tape.
The signs were then cut with the laser.
Step 4: Stick It Up
The accessories were peeled off their sheet and stuck to the signs.
We took down the old washroom signage and stuck up the pretty new signs. So much better!