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10 09, 2019

Unique Multi-layer Backdrop Takes Center Stage in Tyler, the Creator Tour Set Design

By |September 10th, 2019|Clients, Digital Printing, Projects|0 Comments

When Alex Reardon of Silent House Productions contacted us regarding this year’s Tyler, the Creator tour, we could not have been more excited. We immediately knew that we would be involved in a stage design and touring production of epic proportions. With a full-on tour schedule of more than 30 shows in the USA, UK and Canada, it was clear we would need to develop a hamper friendly and tour ready drapery package.

We love being challenged to create something new and unique. Not the same old run of the mill white cyc – this projection surface was to have the texture of fine ribbons and the ability blow in the wind while offering a reflective and bright surface for lighting and projection. It needed to be tangle resistant and have a series of unique contoured bottom edge cuts.

Sew What?’s very own Shane Nelsen worked directly with Alex Reardon and the TtC design team and got immediately to prototyping different ways we could achieve this unique request. After reviewing many different materials, a decision to settle on a lightly toned knit cloth was made since it would check all the design need boxes and offer wrinkle resistance as well. The best approach was to digitally print the elements onto our Heavy Knit cloth. We were able to add the light grey toning to the cloth, print the 1” wide ribbon cut lines and draft in the unique contoured curved bottom.

Made in separate sections to allow for the sections to be layered and adjusted as needed onsite, there were 48 pieces in total that made up the four backdrops. Once all the printed elements were applied to their respective webbing headers and layered appropriately, it was time for the process of cutting all the ribbons. We don’t call ourselves the Sew What? “family” for nothing. It truly was a family event, and everyone (office staff as well) put in time on the cutting table to slice up cloth into miles and miles of ribbon. (Some might hang around the coffee maker for the most recent news, but for us we were hanging around the @feliciathegoat backdrop to cut and catch up!)

The outcome is absolutely stunning – and we hope that you will have time to see the show when it is in your town. We are thrilled to have been selected to provide a custom touring softgood package for Tyler, the Creator. Thank you to Alex Reardon and team for your support and confidence in our ability and product.

Tyler The Creator @feliciathegoat x Chicago #IGOR 

  • Creative Director / Lighting & Set Designer @alexreardon65 of @silenthouseproductions
  • Lighting Programmer @climbingwombat
  • Disguise Programmer @retinakiller
  • Notch FX @rowanglenn
  • Tour Manager @henrybordeaux
  • Production by @eighteentwentysix
  • Video Content: @immanent_vj

See a video of the backdrop in action as a projection surface: https://youtu.be/N6do_QHcjWk

5 09, 2019

Delicious Taco Thursday-Block Party Event Gets “Devoured”

By |September 5th, 2019|Company, Rent What Team, Sew What Team|0 Comments

One of the best ways to blow off some steam and enjoy some stress-free time with one another is being able to experience a great meal with one another. We here at SW? Inc. truly love a good grub-fest, and we are very lucky that our company’s owners and management feel the same way that we do! Recently we were thrilled to be able to enjoy another delicious “Taco Thursday—Block Party,” conveniently brought right to our very own warehouse.

The taco truck was from a company called Taco Gallos Loco, which we have thoroughly enjoyed here at SW in the past, and which did NOT disappoint yet again! Warehouse, sales, management, and even our neighbors at Lowy Enterprises, Inc all got to come out, grab some amazingly delicious and authentic Mexican food, and hang out in the cool shade of the warehouse together.

Devouring everything from delectable street tacos, overstuffed burritos, gooey quesadillas, and even chips and an assortment of fresh, homemade salsas, there was something for everyone. Washing it all down with a wide variety of ice cold beverages, and then topping it all off with scrumptious ice cream sandwiches, were both the perfect added touches to this amazing meal.

Getting to share a meal together–during what has been a wonderfully busy few months–was a fantastic way for staff to unwind and relax a little bit with one another. We genuinely appreciate the special camaraderie that everyone here has with one another, and always look forward to these special treats and celebrations that our company generously likes to surprise their “Whatter’s Family” with.

27 08, 2019

Digitally Printed Backdrop Mesmerizes Audiences Across The Country

By |August 27th, 2019|Digital Printing, Projects|0 Comments

Here at Sew What? Inc., we honestly enjoy being involved in all kinds of concert tours, festivals, and productions, and we are sincerely excited to help create the most beautiful digitally printed backdrops for our clients that they can ever imagine. Our state of the art, grand-format in-house digital printer can create seamless custom-printed individual drapery pieces up to 10ft. wide each. And with our incredibly gifted manufacturing team’s mad sewing skills, we can then build custom digitally printed curtains in practically any shape, size, and style that our clients’ imaginative minds can think of.

This past spring, renowned Stage/Tour Designer Gordon Droitcoir (@courdesign) and absolutely unrivaled Lighting Designer Jonathan “Jonny” Kingsbury (@kingsburyeyes) reached out to us for a custom theatrical curtain. They were gearing up for the upcoming national “Mystic Truth Tour” for Southern Californian alternative rock band, Bad Suns, and wanted something completely distinctive to showcase behind the band while out on the road. They needed the drape to be lightweight and easy to hang, tour-friendly for transporting from show to show, and vibrant enough to showcase their energizing graphic design with a striking clarity that their entire audiences could enjoy.  They decided to have us construct for them a 16’h x 28’w “venue-friendly” backdrop that was digitally printed onto FR Crystal Poplin, a flame retardant fabric that works beautifully with digital ink for the ultimate in durability and color saturation, helping make their unique image truly stand out. 

This lightweight substrate’s super tight weave allows for a sharp, crisp image, and an almost “glossy” appearance. It has a wonderful translucency and glows exceptionally well when appropriately back lit. We love the way this textile delivers jet black and super saturated dark colors, too—which worked fantastically with this Bad Suns’ genuinely one-of-a-kind graphic.

With a wide array of printable substrates to choose from (indoor, outdoor, opaque, translucent, etc.), digital printing enables you to magnify a photo quality image into a stunning theatrical and scenic digital backdrop. This is especially exciting nowadays because any graphic image that is designed for printing on paper can now be printed on fabric, too. So we can literally take any idea from your graphic artist’s imagination and turn it into a real-world, spectacular stage design for your show or production—just like we did for Gordon and Jonathan and this tour. Reach out to us anytime and we’d be delighted to build you a remarkable digitally printed curtain for you upcoming special event, too. And you should definitely check out Bad Suns in concert at any of their upcoming shows this Fall across the country—their post-punk inspired music offers a downright extraordinary live show experience!

20 08, 2019

Magnificent Austrian Curtain Offers The Perfect Background For Charity Gala

By |August 20th, 2019|Products, Projects|1 Comment

When our clients come to us looking for a special occasion drape, we love being able to guide them directly to our Specialty Drapery Rental Collections so that they can choose from an extensive variety of gorgeous, one-of-a-kind drapes that can be shipped anywhere in the continental United States. Giuliano Mingucci, the brilliant Director of Production at Vista Productions, came to us looking for a stunning backdrop that could be used at an enormously important, and high profile, corporate charity gala event for which that they were coordinating event production and design, The Mercy Health Foundation Charity Ball in Rogers, Arkansas.

Being a premier live event production company offering creative services, show technology, and video production in locales and venues all-across the globe, they needed to be sure that this drape matched the evening’s cultured, glamorous theme. They sought a stylish and alluring backdrop that would be versatile enough to use throughout the entire soiree—from the dinner and speeches to the awards and performances—and they chose one of our Ivory (Crushed) Satin Austrian drapes. “Exquisite,” “luxurious,” and “elegant” are all perfect adjectives for this extraordinary piece from our Delightably White rental drapery collection.

Our gorgeous operable Austrian curtain is the true embodiment of sophistication, and will help add drama and excitement to any type of distinctive occasion you can think of.  Made of IFR Crushed Satin, this striking fabric is a go-to favorite for designing exceptional occasions, productions, and tours alike. It has a magnificent glossy appearance to it, which helps reflect lighting superbly. And the fabric’s textured finish helps easily hide any wrinkles that may have occurred during transit, too. Not to mention that because it is inherently flame retardant, it is a much-loved fabric for venues and fire marshals alike. Giuliano and his team at Vista Productions did a tremendous job with this event’s radiant stage design, and we were thrilled that our drape was able to play a part in the gala’s overall fabulous look.

Either fully operational—or simply used as a backdrop—this resplendent 23’h x 40’w Crushed Ivory Satin Austrian drape is by far one of our most popular rental curtains. And from these truly spectacular photos taken by Philip Thomas with Novo Studio, you can see why! Impressive in both natural and stage lighting, this drape literally has it all….Class, style, and opulence. Contact one of our sales reps today to see which of our Specialty Rental Drapes might be the perfect fit for your upcoming special event or stage production, too.

12 08, 2019

Meet The Staff–UPDATES! Marilyn

By |August 12th, 2019|Company, Rent What Team, Sew What Team|1 Comment

Next in our Meet The Staff—UPDATES! Blog series is someone who has been an incredible addition to the company from her very first day here—Marilyn Moss. Having worked in the theatrical drapery and supply business for decades, right here in Southern California, she is an expert in anything and everything related to theatrical fabrics and customization. She’s an enormous help for both our clients as well as her colleagues, offering insights and suggestions for all kinds of production and concert tour stage designs. Please take a moment and learn a little more about this invaluable member of the Whatter’s family, Marilyn!

What were you originally hired to do, and how have your duties/job descriptions changed since working here?

I was hired as a sales representative for Sew What? back in 2015. Even though my job description hasn’t technically changed, I am just amazed at how much I still–almost daily–learn and discover new aspects of theatrical drapery manufacturing even after being in this crazy (yet fulfilling and fun!) business for so long. With many of our individual projects being unique within themselves, we unquestionably absorb a lot from sharing their details with one another. Plus, we also learn from the jobs themselves–what to do again next time, as well as what maybe NOT to do.  It is really wonderful to work for a company where everyone helps each other out so readily and easily. And also to work in a place where the entire staff seems to want to share their knowledge, ideas, recommendations, and experiences in order to achieve the common goal of making sure that the customer is not just satisfied, but also blown away by their purchased and/or rental drapes, as well as our overall customer service.

What are some favorite memories from being part of the Sew What? family?

I like that occasional surprises of Ice Cream Days, or when a Taco Truck comes by, as well as when the whole company gets together for holidays to share some good food and hearty laughs. It’s never a dull moment around here when we all get together to eat! And of course I absolutely adore our little company squirrel, Miss Trixie, with all of my heart…There is just something so endearing about her sweet expression, and seeing her waiting for me to hand her breakfast every morning when I come into work is an absolute highlight in my day. I mean, just look at her lovable face!

What project have you worked on recently that was interesting or challenging?

The most recent project that I worked on that was both challenging and interesting was when I was asked by my client to build them a larger than life, IFR Textura multi-piece drapery set….which they wanted to also use it as a double kabuki drop.  Not only did each leg–stage left and stage right–have 3 distinct parts to them, but one of the segments was also a huge custom-built swag.  Fortunately for me, the style of swag was something we had done before. However, the real challenge was more about making sure that this swag fell into place beautifully and properly after the first of these kabuki drops.  A big “thumbs up!” to the workroom on this one….as it looked completely spectacular!