Here's Who Makes Those Painted Chalk Signs At Trader Joe's

trader joe's chalk signage
trader joe's chalk signage - Jaclyn Vernace/Shutterstock

Trader Joe's likes doing things a bit differently compared to conventional grocery chains, such as only carrying their own branded products and for much lower prices. It explains why many Trader Joe's products have a cult-like following as customers can't get enough of budget-friendly items like cauliflower gnocchi and spicy avocado hummus.

The store's styling and décor are also a bit outside the norm, such as the staff's ubiquitous Hawaiian shirts and the eye-catching chalk signage used to promote products. If you ever wondered who's behind the in-store artwork, according to a Reddit thread, it's meticulously created by crew members.

One employee dished on Reddit about their experience creating TJ's chalk art. According to the staffer, a BFA in Studio Fine Art gave them the skills and training they needed to create the signage. They added, "There is no job position at Trader Joe's entitled 'Sign Artist,' nor is there an official 'Sign Team.'" Rather, it's just one of the responsibilities (or perks) of the job for talented employees.

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Why Trader Joe's Passionately Supports Art And Artists

trade joe's outdoor chalk sign
trade joe's outdoor chalk sign - Gado/Getty Images

Trader Joes' ubiquitous chalk signs are a form of marketing that deftly calls attention to products customers might otherwise overlook (such as the fan favorite ube-flavored ice cream that's only available seasonally). Most other grocery stores have signs that are designed and printed digitally, which is a much more efficient process. Yet, Trader Joes' insistence on using handmade signs provides an artistic outlet to staff members while offering a stable wage — something that can be incredibly challenging for those pursuing art as a profession.

Many young artists find working at the store beneficial when it comes to honing their skills, which also supports their future endeavors. Additionally, crew members aren't relegated to just chalk signage alone, as many create large-scale murals and other pieces in the store. The use of handmade signs serves another important purpose that allows Trader Joe's to infuse fun and levity into its brand that helps attract customers seeking a fun and carefree shopping experience.

How The Artwork At Trader Joe's Comes Together

trade joe's chalk sign display
trade joe's chalk sign display - Jaclyn Vernace/Shutterstock

The crew members responsible for creating Trader Joes' chalk signs are as unique as the products the chain sells. That means each employee brings their own perspective to the process. According to a Trader Joe's sign maker on TikTok, their creative process begins with a water-based ink marker to create a solid black background (which helps the subsequent colors pop). Other sign makers at the chain encourage simplicity when it comes to design to ensure optimum readability. Especially since shelf signs typically have three text components: the name of the item, the sale price, and a helpful tip on how to use said item.

As for the crew member who shared their insights on Reddit, individual artists have a lot of say in the signage they make. The employee stated they needed to secure approval from a manager first, but otherwise they had "free reign [sic] over the design." It's all part of the chain's desire to create a more personable experience for both staff and shoppers. So, the next time you see a brightly-colored sign while shopping, you might want to take a moment to appreciate the artistic endeavor of a highly talented individual.

Read the original article on Daily Meal