The Association stands ready to help you - without charge - with the design and emblazonment of a coat of arms which follow the established rules of heraldry. The design process is a collaboration between you, the client, and an IAAH-approved herald, who makes him- or herself available to explain the heraldic science, propose design options, and assist you to arrive at a pleasing design in keeping with the laws of heraldry. The amount of design work offered free of charge is limited to the basics of heraldry: the shield, the helm, wreath, crest, mantling, and motto, displayed in a high definition image suitable for framing, delivered to you as an electronic file.
Designing arms is a process which typically takes some weeks to complete. The herald will discuss with you by email those things which you wish to represent visually and other requirements you may have, and then help you to arrive at a visual representation of those ideas. Your ideas or desires will not always be able to be met in every circumstance, since the herald is always bound to follow the principles of good heraldic design and the universally applicable rules of heraldry. The herald, of course, will do what he or she can and will strive to explain why something cannot be done, while providing alternatives. Once the herald has prepared a draft design attractive to you, it will be submitted to the IAAH Board who will assess it for heraldic correctness, good practice and that, as far as can be ascertained, it does not infringe the rights of any other armiger. If necessary, the Board reserves the right to insist that the design be modified or rethought. Once the design has satisfied the Board, the herald will pass it to an association artist for emblazonment of a high definition image. To bring the process to a conclusion, a certificate of IAAH approval and completion will be issued.
If you have previously assumed arms or have a substantially complete design you may seek assistance from the IAAH to consult on particular design questions or to arrange for it to be emblazoned. The IAAH will not, however, agree to emblazon any design which is not in accord with the rules of heraldry. The IAAH's herald will, in such circumstances, explain the issue and offer his or her help to correct the design's deficiency. If you are planning on registering your design with a heraldic organization or to petition an official heraldic authority for a grant of arms and would like assistance in doing so, you should discuss this with your IAAH-assigned herald.
Due to the amount of design work at hand, it may take a little while for you to receive a response from the IAAH herald. We presently have a backlog of requests so your patience would be appreciated. An IAAH representative will contact you via email as soon as possible with further information.