» What's this site about?
This site is dedicated to real signs located in public places or of public use, from all over the world. You can enjoy and learn about them and also buy cool products that display them.
This web site is basically a search engine of real signs of all kind. You have two main ways of seaching: by category/geographic location (“What?/Where?”) and by free text. The results are always shown randomly according to search terms. Click on the thumbnail to show a bigger picture, often a short explanation and all the products with the sign in question on them.
There are many reasons but the main one is that we love them! The fact is that we all live in a world full of signs. They are everywhere. It doesn’t matter which country in the world you travel to. You’ll find them! By the road, in the middle of the street, down in the subway, on the door to the restroom, in the middle of nowhere... It is something the whole of mankind has in common. Signs can be funny, cool, original, direct, frightening, soothing, harmonious, chaotic, emotional. They sometimes epitomize places you love. Announce things that you may like... or dislike. They are a powerful communication tool in front of which you most of the times can´t remain indifferent.
Yes, they are. All of them, no exceptions. As a matter of fact, that’s one of the main points about this site. We don't “invent” signs, we like the real thing, exactly as it is in everyday life. And reality is pretty cool!
It could be the case. WOS is about signs from the real world, but some of them might not be used any longer. As a matter of fact we are extending our stock with old historic signs.
Signs are present in many aspects of life so we’re trying to get them all on our site.
Our system is integrated in the Cafepress shopping system, the most important provider of customized products on the Internet. Cafepress, a company based in California, produces and sends the articles directly to you, with customer satisfaction guaranteed. You can read more about Cafepress terms here.
Yes, please! We do appreciate all your input because we want to make this site better and better. We would love to hear your opinion and ideas about what we’re doing. Don’t hesitate to contact us (use the option “Contact”, on the main bar).
We have no corporate content on our site, just signs in the public realm.
Yes, a lot. You will find many series of signs. That opens up for numerous collection possibilities: tile coasters with street signs of London, badges with New York interstates, mugs with animal signs, and so on.
Our signs are not photographies but high-quality reproductions of real signs. We always strive to produce identical copies, putting a lot of efforts into doing so. It often involves not only an artistic input but also a considerable amount of research.
We always use the best possible image resolution to fit every product as recommended by Cafepress. Thumbnails can sometimes be misleading. If you want to have a closer look at the design, choose a product and select the option “View larger". On the pop-up window click on “Zoom In On Image”.
For us a sign is a standardized message (that is, following some kind of system) in a place open to the public and applied on a permanent base. We don’t consider a sign, for example, a hand-written off-the-cuff announcement on a cardboard by the road. Sometimes there’s just one of the same model, sometimes millions (who has ever counted the number of octagonal STOP signs in the whole world?).
Google Earth is a free application developed and provided by Google that allows you to travel around the world with high-resolution satellite images.
Quite a lot. WOS depicts exclusively real signs and as we are dealing with real stuff we want to show you -when possible- where it is located. Therefore, WOS integrates GE links to let you see signs in their real place, sometimes with almost millimetric precision. For more info and to download the app, click here.
In order to display GE’s links in WOS you need to download Google Earth, which is a free application. We recommend you leave Google Earth open while using WOS so you can swiftly fly from one place to the other. For more info and to download the app, click here.
Especially when dealing with the US we recommend you check the options “Terrain” and “3D Buildings” in the Layers window as follows:
When we choose the view angle we take care that the buildings won't stop you from seeing the sign in question (this applies in particular to American cities).
It could be a good idea to leave Google Earth open while visiting WOS so you can travel around more easily.
Cafepress takes care of everything related to the purchase of products from Worldofsigns (delivery times, changes, etc.). Click on the links by the footer of this web page if you want to get more information or contact CP.
Yes, you can. In the left column of this page you will find a coupon that you can validate when checking out. You will get the discount specified in it.
A historical sign is a sign not used any longer as a public sign.
Unfortunately we don’t have the resources to satisfy every individual wish, but we are always keen to hear what you want to tell us, your commentaries, tips, etc. Your input could very well inspire us to introduce new things.