Pen tool

Design Led.

Bespoke Signage.

Made For You.


We got excited when we were approached by NERDY’s Tom Matthews. He and his business partner (and good buddy) Dan were setting up a new board games café in Shrewsbury, something all us foxes were especially interested in…we love a board game!

Taking over a huge venue, the two had quite the project ahead of them, turning a disused Thai Restaurant into the bright and shiny NERDY, and that’s where Sly Fox Design came in…

As with all new business’s, expenditure can get overwhelming when you first start. We wanted to provide cost effective solutions that would transform the run-down shop front into something clean and fresh without breaking the bank for them. Tom already had some ideas and designs which he sent over to us and we got our brains whirring to work out the best way to achieve what he was hoping for and exceed expectations by jazzing them up with some fun and creative uses of materials.

Getting to know the clients is a big part of any design led process. We spent a bit of time on site and meeting Tom and Dan so that we could ‘suss out their vibes’. They are both fun and really enthusiastic about games, gaming and inclusivity. We wanted their image to be clean and impactful on the street so that future customers would be intrigued and drawn to the café.  Phoebe knew their warm personalities would get people through their door in no time. Nerdy isn’t just a shop and café, it’s a community; welcoming families, kids, adults and even OAPs to come play, socialise and have fun learning new games. The potential for the future could be even more with plans to develop the top part of the shop also. We are really happy with the end result of what we came up with for their shop and Tom and Dan were over the moon!

At over 9 metres long we had a big shop front to cover. Using a multitude of different materials together we came up with the best solutions and proposed them to Tom and Dan.  We only use top quality materials at Sly Fox Design.  Quality is always worth it in our experience and we have a bit of knowledge and the creative mindset to get any signage looking fresh and stylish. When approached with the design for their hanging sign (from a well-known game we are told) we decided to CNC the octopus shape out of ACM so that it had a much stronger visual impact than the standard swinging rectangle most shops have. We also wanted to make the glasses POP, so we created a multi layered sign, fixing them onto standoffs on both sides making them 3D and even more, well…NERDY.

Once everything was agreed and proofs were signed off, we booked in the installation dates.  With Tom and Dan having worked relentlessly with the help of friends and colleagues to get the outside and inside painted and prepped for business they also needed to help us by prepping for the frosting. Frosting needs a VERY clean environment to make sure it looks most effective. With any dust or dirt nearby when you are installing it, you can be sure the static from the backing paper removal will pick it up!

On the first install day, the install team headed to Shrewsbury town centre. With pre-cut 3m long ACM panels to fix onto the fascia, we had to make sure all our measurements were spot on. As with most installations and old buildings, nothing is ever square or straight.  We often need to come up with solutions or work-arounds to make sure the end product looks like the planned visual. Within a day we had the full fascia up and the hanging sign. We and the NERDY team spent some time triple cleaning the areas where frosting was planned, and the frosting then went up the following day. At the end of the installation we were overwhelmed by the excitement of Dan and Tom.  The great thing about sign making, is you get to make and install the fun and exciting visual elements of the business owner’s dreams, bringing their ideas into reality. We design and help them create what they have been thinking about for years, possibly decades.  We turn up and whatever building, vehicle or treehouse they have decided to take the plunge on will be left looking like their very own business.  It truly is an honour to get to work with great clients like the NERDY guys, and we love getting to assist in the creation of awesome projects like this one! We love our job more and more each day! Thank you NERDY!!!


Nerdy Store Frontage