I carved my own name boards. It took a while, but I think was worth the effort. I found a book on carving "Cape Cod style" signs, which was written, coincidentally, by another Paul White.
The side boards are varnished teak, with painted white lettering with a black outline. I'm currently working on a larger name board for the transom, which will be painted blue, with gold leaf lettering.
To me, it seems that gold on varnished teak would have lower contrast between the lettering and background.