Eric Klein Velderman: Design By Intent

Eric Klein Velderman: Design by Intent.

We interview the lead designer at Cantoo Design.


While the ultimate brief for signage must be that it is instructive and either relays a message or directions, it must also have consideration to its surroundings and fit within its environment. Poorly designed signs aggravate just as much as well-designed ones instil wellbeing; getting the balance between something that does the job for which it was intended whilst achieving aesthetic appeal is the goal of interior design. xsign has built a relationship with Eric Klein Velderman of Cantoo Design, whose interior design portfolio includes a number of schools, leisure centres and learning spaces. Eric has specified xsign on  projects that require interior and exterior signs.

Eric has been creating engaging interior spaces as lead designer at Cantoo Design for more than 15 years and his enthusiasm for modern architecture is a major factor in the success of many of his projects. Eric’s ability to create engaging spaces for visitors has led to many exciting collaborations. Having completed a BA (Hons) degree in Fine Art, Eric focused on using his skills to create a wide range of focus pieces, including sculptural installations, interior design set pieces, and public artworks. He is comfortable working in a huge array of mediums, including metal fabrications, acrylics, clay, glass and resin, and LED’s for electronic systems. His obvious ability to create outstanding works in a variety of materials often means he needs a flexible supply team to help realise the vision. We’ve been specified by Eric on a series of sign projects due to our ability to manufacture sign types that meet his exacting requirements. It is Eric’s energy and passion for architectural spaces that has spurred xsign’s focus towards the architectural community.

Together with Eric, xsign has been specified for prestigious sign contracts at schools and local authority-controlled venues including Perdiswell Leisure Centre, Birkett House School, Barwell Area Primary School, Mount Grace School, all in Leicestershire, and the Kettering Buccleugh Academy in Northamptonshire.

When it reopened in January 2017 following an extensive refit, the signage and colour scheme presentations at Perdiswell Leisure Centre attracted great praise. The new signage system was aimed squarely at inclusivity and features that were designed to help those less able. The wayfinding signage was designed with Braille panels along with regular written instructions, and a colour-coding system to help those with dementia was added to aid navigation. Working with Eric, xsign decided on a series of Lucite jigsaw panels that could be unlocked and changed as necessary, making it economic as well as attractive. It is these features and attention to detail that attracted Eric to partner with xsign and a relationship with xsign CEO, Mark Shaw-Smith has ensued.

Eric has chosen to continue working with xsign based on our ability to deliver excellence in design with a unique take on colour and texture. It is Eric’s forward-looking attitude that has cemented both the friendship and business relationship that will continue to be a meeting of artistic ability with manufacturability.

xsign is proud to have been involved in the design and construction of signage schemes with such a creative talent as Eric, and we are looking forward to leading on sign projects together in the future.