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We're getting ready to prepare a fairly large inlay for the body of a guitar. The outside ring is mother of pearl and we're going to engrave and black fill the lettering. Setting the type on an ellipse is really frustrating, there are so many compromises.
The pdf shows the inlay we're working on. Here's a picture of a similar inlay (without the lettering) to give some idea of context:
The MA in MARIE is really irritating, but I just don't see any way around it without grossly large letterspacing. I would be open to other font suggestions, but there's limitations with our hand engraving, and no lower-case with the baseline on this one.
In all likelihood the materials in the inlay will make the efforts of typesetting go unnoticed, but that's OK - the main thing I want to avoid is the type glaring out or overpowering the design in any way.