beard comb branding

Prototyping case study: Bearded Basturds‘ laser engraved beard combs

Craig Mackay started a beard product company in 2016 and soon started receiving enquiries about beard combs. He sourced beautiful and bespoke combs made from whisky barrels by The Upcycled Timber Company and decided to engrave them with his logo.


Craig brought some combs to our workshop with black and white vector versions of his beard logo. Logos in this format are perfect as resizing the logo would be essential, but we needed to do this without compromising logo quality.

With these prototypes, the challenge was to get the engravings looking right on the product. Density of the wood was the only material consideration as it affects engraving depth, but this could be fine-tuned using the machine’s engraving settings.

Craig decided that he’d like his beard logo without the surrounding circle of his logo on one side of the comb, and ‘BEARDED BASTURDS’ on the other side. We settled on two or three sizes of both to see what would work best. As the combs are very chunky, we agreed that engraving sizes should be bold but with enough white space around them to look good.

Engraving the prototypes

We started with the beard logo. The first engraving was a bit small, so we enlarged it by 3mm. It looked good, so we enlarged it again, but this time it was a bit too big. Our machine settings gave a nice engraving depth, and the wood grain produced lovely striations in the engraved area.

Now for the text. As Craig didn’t have any made up, we chose a font and created a text file in vector format so that it could be rescaled without loss of quality to suit different engraving sizes. We suspected that the text should be as wide as the comb teeth, but started with a smaller version first. It looked very good, but we thought the depth of engrave wasn’t enough for the look Craig wanted. Even although the settings were the same as for the beard logo that looked perfect, eyes can deceive and finer engravings often need more depth to look comparable.

For the second attempt, we increased engraving power and engraved the text at a larger size. This time, engraving depth was perfect. We suspected that the text was a bit on the big side, so we engraved the smaller text at a higher power, and it looked perfect.

What happened next

Craig left that day with a choice of two logo sizes and two text sizes that he could choose between. After a week of mulling things over, he decided on the medium beard and smaller text combination.


Contact us if you have ideas you’d like to explore but aren’t sure how to. It’s amazing what can be achieved within an hour if you visit  our workshop and we can assess results as soon as they come off the machine.