A national trade magazine has recognized the Peacock Diner’s neon sign and its designer, Hope Edwards, with selection to the championship round in an international reader’s choice competition. Signs of the Times Magazine judges chose 10 signs each from crowded fields within the electric and nonelectric categories. Judges then tallied their score sheets and the three highest scoring signs in each category have advanced to the championship round.
Signs of the Times Magazine wa
The double-sided, 11 feet wide by 7 feet high sign identifies the Peacock Loop Diner at 6261 Delmar Boulevard. It depicts a brilliant blue peacock with its head rising above extravagant fan-shaped tail feathers. The words “Peacock Loop Diner” appear across the bird’s chest. Three rows of plumage are vividly colored in emerald green, lemon yellow, and neon blue. Each feather features a raspberry colored spot.
Providing a constant animated neon show, the feathers illuminate in sequence from the center to the outside and back again. More than 680 feet of glass neon tubing were used to create the sign. The 1,800-pound structure is built of aluminum with steel main supports and rises 16 feet above the sidewalk outside the 24-hour diner.
Edwards, a graphic designer, created the design model and consulted in its transformation into a piece of art. According to Edwards, “My dad (Peacock owner Joe Edwards) had a definite concept for the sign, and was specific about certain elements. It had to be elegant and poppy and diner-ish at the same time.”
Edwards said she spent much time searching for a font that was stylish and retro-feeling, but not dated. “I wanted it to feel modern and be legible. I think the three stripes on either side of the lettering help give a clear diner feel.”
She also commented on what a pain in the neck the bird was to make look good. “It was difficult making the peacock look elegant and not goofy. They have a strange neckline when you look at them. It’s no wonder people recall them for their feathers primarily.”
Piros Signs, a third generation company based in Barnhart, Missouri fabricated and installed thePeacock sign. The company has serviced, manufactured, or installed signs hanging from numerous iconic area edifices. These include signs from the Amoco at Clayton Rd. and Skinker Blvd., Powell Symphony Hall, the Fox Theatre, Ballpark Village, and more.
The sign business, founded in 1957, never entered a competition previous to the current Signs of the Times Magazine contest. However, based on the comprehensive uniquity in the design, fabrication, and installation of the project Piros Signs decided to submit the Peacock sign for judgement. Among several difficult problems the sign presented, the firm had to contend with the daunting task of placing 50 transformers without causing significant bulk.