postcard of 1910 boat launch

Boat Lettering

Hand crafted lettering & decoration
on New England boats.

I live in a small village on the coast of Maine. In the spring and summer I paint names on fishing boats and yachts. The local boat yards have skilled craftspeople that I enjoy working with. Quite a few yachts have gold leaf lettering and stripes. Boats up here are mostly traditional in design. My taste leans toward antique letter styles with a sense of history.

Two boats built by Lyman-Morse Boatbuilding and lettered by Peter Achorn. Dark Harbor Boat Yard in the fog. His lobster boat is named Allwork Boaters in the summer in Maine.Chris-Craft lake boat Remember When Working in the storage tent at Wayfarer Marine on Susanna.Three restored Herrishoffs at French & Webb ready to launch.
Engine turned gold name Burnadette with builder Pete Kass of John's Bay Boat. Herrishoffs lined up on 700 Acre Island. Dark Harbor 20's in the wood shop at Dark Harbor Boat Yard. A launch in Belfast Maine.Gold name and stripe on racing yacht bound for Europe. Piping Rabbit in gold on mahogany. Electra light board with white gold carved letters Crew of the USS Maine in 1896 A gust of hot air coming from the Capitol City. Fairweather name readable though quite small Launching Magpie Mary Jane and John Sea Breeze casual Roman letters.Three herrishoffs being restored at French & Webb.

    In Arizona I had painted the names on less than a dozen boats in 14 years. In Maine I learned about lettering boats from some great old-timers. I was lettering about 150 boats a year in my prime... now I'm Old Pete.

Rocky coast of Maine.Fairweather 22 kt gold vinyl name in calligraphic font.Dark Harbor Boat Yard on 700 Acre Island.

    Boat yards in Maine are located in harbors of all sizes. They have been there since the towns were young, so they are on some prime real estate. One of the benefits of boatyard work is the views I get while I eat lunch. Some folks pay money to sit on a dock and eat.

post card of ferry service in 1940s Dragonfly brush calligraphy on a small boat.
The crew boat ready to take us back to the main land. Flying Fish on a day sailer. Marshall Point Lighthouse and the Monhegan boat. Euro-modern catamaran built at Lyman-Morse and heading south.

    Names on boats have a personal meaning to their owners. The letter style must be right for that specific word, boat design and owner.

There is a 300 ft gold stripe arount this yacht.Thomaston harbor with lime kilns on the water and Montpellier to the left.
All photos, artwork and information are copyrighted by Peter Achorn and Fire Gold.  © 1999-2015 all rights reserved.
Any perceived copyright infringements are unintentional and will be removed upon request.