Maybe it’s just a guy thing, but I was always liked traffic signs. Something about them is official, fun, and about going places. I always wanted to hang some for decorations inside my house, but stealing them is just wrong. So after doing a little research, I was surprised to discover you can buy them. New ones, the real things. Yes, we are talking the highly-reflective full-size mounted on thick aluminum, just like what your city or state uses. These are not the cheap decorations you find in the art supply mega-store.
I found 3 suppliers online:
I’m sure there are more, but these are the ones I found. I made my purchase from USA Traffic Signs, and was serviced well. You may have a local supplier if you look in the phone book under “Barricades”.
The stock sign I bought was $18 plus shipping. Also possible but even more expensive are green street signs with whatever name you want (~$40). You can also get US Highway (route 66, anyone?) and Interstate signs with numbers you select, but those are more expensive ($40-60).
There are different sizes available. You probably want the smallest size. The larges ones on the side of the road look small, but that is because you are far away. They really are quite large, too large for a typical decoration.
Also look for the reflectivity: “engineer grade” (good) or “high intensity prismatic” (better).
And if you have an unusual thrist for knowledge about traffic signs, take a read through the Unofficial Manual of Traffic Signs. It even tells you which font to use in Photoshop to make it look real.
Now that you know where to honestly purchase signs, don’t steal any!
And if you are really into this kind of thing, how about a traffic light? ;-)