Brown & Balsley Sign Company: Creating Custom Signs To Draw Attention To Your Business

Brad Balsley displays a small vinyl sign made for ThurstonTalk.


Brad Balsley displays a small vinyl sign made for ThurstonTalk.

Brown & Balsley Sign Company has been around for 17 years now.  It’s one of those local businesses that quietly does work all over town.  When giant vinyl banners are hung over State Avenue or Capitol Way, promoting a festival or civic event, you’ve noticed.  When restaurants place sandwich boards out the sidewalk advertising lunch specials, you’ve noticed.  When new offices open and beautiful sandblasted wood signs go up in front of the buildings with the business name prominently displayed, you’ve noticed.

Window lettering, vehicle wraps, magnetic signs – you see their work every day.  And although you might not know the name Brown & Balsley, you are drawn to other business because of the outdoor advertising they create.

Tim Brown and Brad Balsley met as students at North Thurston High School back in the mid-80s.  Years later, Brown hired Balsley to work with him at a local sign company.  When that business dissolved, the two friends decided to open up their own shop.   Both enjoyed the work they were doing, interacting with customers, designing and producing various types of signs, and managing the business end of things.  Neither felt the pull to do anything different.   “I didn’t want to look for another job,” explains Balsley.  “I liked that job because it was indoors and there wasn’t any heavy lifting involved,” he says with a smile.  “It’s lightweight stuff!”

Just a small display of the types of signs and banners that Brown & Balsley can customize for your business.

It may be lightweight, but it keeps them busy.  They started out in a shop on 4th and Franklin and moved to their present location, right behind Ralph’s Thriftway on State about 5 years ago.  Over the past 17 years, the two-man shop has built and maintained a solid client base.  They are able to count the City of Olympia, Westfield Capital Mall, and Providence Saint Peter’s Hospital among their repeat customers.  They are proud that they can complete just about any job in-house, and if a customer wants something requiring technology they don’t have they have the ability to outsource.

“What sets us apart is our experience,” says Balsley.  “The thing about us is we’ll be there.  We’re still there for the people we did signs for 15 years ago.”

The possibilities for displays are endless, and Brown & Balsley like to think of their shop as one-stop shopping.  Balsley encourages clients to explain what it is they want and he’ll help them tailor products to their business.  “Come to me for everything; I’ll do it,” he says.   Often customers come in wanting one thing then see something completely different displayed in the shop and realize they don’t have to go to another source for that particular need.  Often they don’t realize the guy who is making their sandwich board can also do window lettering and logos.  He knows that’s what sets their business apart.  “It’s not that I can’t, it’s that I can,” he says.  “I make whatever people want.”

Some of the sign options available through Brown & Balsley are:

  • Vinyl Banners
  • Sandblasted Cedar Signs
  • Sandwich boards or A-boards
  • Corrugated Plastic
  • Vans, Trucks, Cars, Boat Lettering
  • Magnetic Signs
  • Metal
  • Poly-Metal
  • PVC
  • Window Graphics / Lettering
  • Menu Boards / Trade show displays
  • Vehicle Wraps
Brown & Balsley is located just behind Ralph’s Thriftway on State Avenue in downtown Olympia.

Please visit the Brown & Balsley website and their Facebook page for examples of the work they can do.

Brown & Balsley Sign Company

1927 State Ave NE

(behind Ralph’s Thriftway)

Olympia WA 98506

Phone: 360.705.3099

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