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Monthly Archives: March 2009

24 03, 2009

Yes, the Show Did Go On for the Pussycat Dolls

By |March 24th, 2009|Projects|0 Comments

After making a fabulous appliquéd, beaded and dye sublimated satin custom backdrop for the Pussycat Dolls’ current tour with Britney Spears, we had to do some repairs in one day and then ship the drop via Fed Ex International Priority Overnight to the show in Toronto.

Well, Fed Ex really dropped the ball, and it looked like the backdrop wasn’t going to make the show.  After hours on the phone with Fed Ex, I finally learned at 3:30 pm Toronto time that although the backdrop was ready at the Fed Ex Toronto hub, Fed Ex wouldn’t deliver it that day.

That put me in a panic.  The backdrop had to get to the Air Canada Centre by 5:00 pm to make that night’s show.  I jumped on the Internet, and after a couple of false starts, found City Centre Courier.  Mike Kovatch really came through.  With just 40 minutes notice, he was able to get a courier to the Fed Ex hub and through 20 miles of rush hour traffic to the venue.  The package arrived precisely at 5:00 pm and the show went on!  Thanks, Mike!  You really came through for Sew What? and the Pussycat Dolls!

24 03, 2009

What fabric is best for stage skirts and black stage curtains?

By |March 24th, 2009|Fabrics, Question of the Week|3 Comments

I’ve been noticing a trend recently.  For years, we’ve been making stage skirting and masking stage curtains for music tours out of FR 16oz Commando Cloth (also known as heavy weight duvetyn).  It blocks most of the light and it is quite affordable.  The downside is that it is less durable (since it is cotton) and the topical flame retardancy treatment dissipates over time, which can be an issue if the soft goods become damp (such as at outdoor venues).  It works fine for a single tour, but Commando soft goods often end up in the bin after the tour is over.

Lately, though, many production designers are choosing to use PFR Encore Velour instead.  Not only does it provide terrific masking and light blockage, but as a polyester fabric, it is much more durable and is permanently flame retardant, allowing the possibility of using the skirts and stage curtains for more than one tour.  It does cost a little bit more upfront but can be more economical over the long run.

So, any production designers or tour managers out there…let me know what you think.  Is Duvetyn still the way to go, or are you moving toward polyester alternatives such as Encore?