Our Story


“J A W Signs & Designs” began over 45 years ago.  As an Ohio, teenager, Jo discovered her need to create.  She was able to satisfy this passion through her art work and began selling original, oil painted, dog portraits to local patrons. Her work progressed to landscapes, seascapes and still life paintings completed in various mediums.

In 1979, in New Jersey, “The Art Room” was born. For 16 years “The Art Room” was an, in-home, fine arts, business. Because she lived in a rural area, she was intrigued by the beauty that surrounded her. Not only did she study it, she began teaching her techniques to gifted adults and children. During this time, she participated in many juried, art shows and galleries shows in the Northeast area and was a signature member of the Northeast Watercolor Society.

Jo moved to Charlotte, NC with her husband & daughters, over 22 years ago.  “The Art Room” business morphed into a design business, “JAW Faux Finishes & Murals”.  This business took her fine arts painting to a new level. Her clients hired her to design & faux-finish their interior walls & ceilings, as backgrounds to her unique, hand painted, murals. Some of her accomplishments included; painting an array of hot air balloons rising into the ceiling in a children’s play room. Blue pearls and flowers were hand painted over a faux finish on walls & ceiling in a master bedroom. Angels in clouds surrounded by doves carrying olive branches were hand painted over a faux finish on a master bedroom & bathroom ceiling.

Today, Jo has teamed up with her husband, David, creating “J A W Signs & Designs”. This business was created with fine arts and graphic arts in mind. Jo has always loved whimsical and inspirational quotes & sayings. Plus, she was an established, fine arts painter. So, why not put them together? She offers many simple, word signs. Also offered, are signs that incorporate words with whimsical designs & flourishes, original fine art designs or contemporary art work. So putting fine arts and graphics together was like eating peanut butter and jelly. Can’t have one without the other!

The process begins with various wood pieces. Some of the wood is from old barns and some is newer wood. After being cut to size, sanded, if need be; Jo begins her magic. The fine art design or whimsical backgrounds are hand painted. The letters for the quotes are then designed, using various fonts, punctuations and flourishes. Each sign has unique steps to completion. Some of the lettering may be painted first or the backgrounds may first be painted. Whichever way it is created and painted, each sign is unique. Some signs have a matt or glossy varnish or a wax finish on them. Some may have a weathered or smooth look instead. Finally, after finishes are dried, hanging hardware is then attached.

The process of creating these awesome signs is long but Jo & David love their work and want you to love their signs. On the website you are able to buy ready- to-ship signs or you can also custom design your sign.  Jo is always available to assist you in your design process.  You can use one of the “Collectible Quotes” that are available on the website. Or, be inspired with a quote of your own.  Next decide on the size of your sign and colors of letters and wood. Jo will lovingly create and paint it for you. It’s that simple! So you be the designer and start creating your awesome, one-of-a-kind, sign.

Also on the website, you can custom design your family name sign, with milestones such as birth dates and wedding dates. Who knows, your sign may become a family heirloom!

Original, hand painted, watercolor and acrylic paintings are available as well. Jo loves to paint on location, especially beach and mountain scenes.

Original pillows with quotes are a unique gift or decorating item for sale as well.



SQUIBB GALLERIES, NEW YORK CITY; Purchased a Permanent Collection mixed media painting from a Gallery Show.

WINSOR NEWTON WATERCOLOR PAINTING AWARD; Received award from SALMAGUNDI CLUB in a Juried Exhibition in New York City.

ATRIUM GALLERY ART CERTIFICATE: Received award from Atrium Gallery, Morris County, NJ.

COVER ART WORK: Displayed original artwork on the cover of Warren County Magazine and Warren County Companion Magazine for 3 years.

CHILDREN’S BOOK ILLUSTRATOR; Illustrator for “CHRIS MOUSE and the Christmas House”.


NUMEROUS COMMISSIONED WORKS OF ART; For Private Collectors and Corporations.

JAW FAUX FINISHES AND MURALS; Owner & Artist – Specializing in Creative, Faux Finishes and Wall Murals for homes and corporations.

THE ART ROOM; Owner & Teacher – Fine Arts Painting and teaching techniques to gifted adults & children.

2018 ART WALK Merit Award