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Digital Printing

/Digital Printing
21 02, 2018

Digitally Printed Backdrop Stuns Audience At Church Production

By |February 21st, 2018|Digital Printing, Fabrics, Products|1 Comment

Recently I came across this awe-inspiring custom digital stage backdrop made from FR Vinyl Mesh, which was a multi-part piece printed and sewn by Sew What? Inc. for our client Triple Horse Studios. They wanted to have something truly remarkable custom-built for a large church production they were designing across the country, yet also it needed to be memorable, beautiful, AND functional.  Having this directly printed digital backdrop made into 5 separate pieces (consisting of drapes 42 feet high by: 35 feet wide, 20 feet wide, and 9 feet wide) allowed maximum flexibility for performer entrances and exits as well as the potential to move to a smaller (or larger) stage in the future. The angular “mosaic” style segments lent themselves stylistically to this instantly recognizable piece of art. FR Vinyl Mesh is an excellent candidate for printing – often overlooked for indoor use. The color saturation and output on this heavily coated vinyl mesh surface is extremely vibrant—fantastic for both smaller OR larger sized stages.

This custom theatrical backdrop made of Vinyl Mesh is great for when air circulation is of concern. This makes it an outstanding choice for indoor and outdoor events that may have sound and music elements. It is also tested and approved as Flame Retardant (FR) so you are not limited to only using it outdoors, which means it can safely be used for events and productions held in all types of venues. This specific backdrop was also “hot-wedge” welded, giving an almost “seamless” look to its vertical seams. Top-finished with webbing, grommets, and ties made it very easy to attach to the church’s in-house truss system in a manner of minutes.

Our state of the art, grand format in-house digital printer can create individual custom-printed pieces, seamless up to 10ft, and with our gifted sewing team’s skills at image matching and seaming, the sky’s the limit with how large you can have your soft goods sewn into! Here is another example of what this incredibly versatile Vinyl Mesh looks like up close through a colorful sample design:

As you can see, the images are extremely bright and clear, which will nicely showcase your intended photo or graphic stunningly for your entire audience to enjoy—for both those that are close-to and far-away from the stage. I would highly recommend having a personally tailored digitally printed backdrop created by the talented individuals at Sew What? instead– because they can literally take any idea from your imagination and turn it into a breathtaking reality.

18 12, 2017

Brilliant Graphic Design is Showcased in this Mixed Media Backdrop for Gov’t Mule

By |December 18th, 2017|Digital Printing, Fabrics, News, Products, Projects|1 Comment

Rock ’n’ roll music has always been a reflection of the times, and the new Gov’t Mule album, Revolution Come… Revolution Go, is no exception. The album was released June 9th, and the band again sets the tone for their legacy with its cleverly-crafted songs, intelligent lyrical commentary, and downright provocative playing. It’s those traditions, combined with an observant eye on the present, that define their tenth full-length studio effort.

This current tour supports the new album release, and Warren, Matt, Danny and Jorgen deliver a patchwork of musical styles, and you can see the passion in their performance in these wonderful photos by Heath Robson.

Image by Heath Robson

There are so many ways to approach each custom backdrop that we are asked to craft.  For a great number of our backdrops, the entire design is digitally printed on our wide format digital printer.  For Gov’t Mule, however, the bold design of the medallion style logo with its solid black surround lent itself perfectly to us crafting a mixed media backdrop. We used both solid opaque black cloth as well as a digitally printed replication of the central graphic, and then with great care we stitched them together into a multi layered piece of textile art.

Working with Tour Manager Fred Cox, we selected 22oz Encore Velour for its wrinkle resistant knit construction to be used for the black background.  Encore is a wonderful substrate for mixed media backdrops as when it is scissor cut it does not fray – allowing for intricate shapes and designs to be taken from the baseline fabric.

Image by Heath Robson

The medallion element in the center was printed in full and glorious color onto our Heavy Knit print fabric. This is a wrinkle resistant knit construction, that takes bright and bold colors well, and is a perfect candidate for applique.  After years of use in the marketplace, this substrate has proved itself a perfect match for tours and projects which require long periods of hamper storage.

The combination of Heavy Knit and Encore Velour is very popular for mixed media backdrops. Not only do our clients love this flame retardant cloth combination – but our sewing room does too! Both fabrics make their way through the sewing machines with ease, making this fabric combination, quite literally, a win-win.

Image by Heath Robson

The medallion area, once sewn onto the black drape, was then treated as a “feature element”.  We turned the drape on its face and meticulously cut away the black Encore Velour from the back of the printed areas.  What this did was allow for the medallion to glow (as it is a translucent fabric) when back lit by revealing it from behind.  This painstaking process required hours of careful trimming and hand scissor cutting to remove the Encore and reveal the glowing central element. Custom sewing for the Entertainment and Event Industry, such as this, is a specialty of ours.

Image by Heath Robson

From the Gov’t Mule website, Haynes is quoted to say, “In many ways, the chemistry between the four of us is an extension of the chemistry that the original trio had. The approach we take to the music is the same uncompromising and adventurous approach, although it’s inevitable that the music is going to grow in different directions. The common thread is the influences we choose and the way we play together, which harkens back to how important improvisation was in most of the music we all love. At the end of the day, we’re friends. Making this music is satisfying in a way that’s completely different from any other project I’ve been a part of. That’s what inspires all of us.”

Image by Heath Robson

About Sew What? Inc:   Custom sewing. It’s our passion, our bread and butter. It’s how we got started and what we live for. Our custom-sewn drapery products have graced the stages of many of the biggest names in music and theater, dressed some of the top fashion show runways, and brought color and drama to major trade show exhibits here and abroad.

We serve these main market areas: Theatrical Drapery Manufacturing, Touring Draperies for Concerts, and Custom Sewn Products for Special Events & Trade Show Exhibits. The portfolios below display many examples of our work and may offer you some ideas on what’s possible with custom drapery. Need ideas? Visit our various Portfolios below or our Flickr Gallery for past projects, and then review fabric choices.

16 10, 2017

Sew What? Inc Backdrops Shimmer for American Rock Band GARBAGE

By |October 16th, 2017|Digital Printing, Fabrics, Products, Projects|1 Comment

Popular American rock band Garbage is well known for their alternative rock music. Breaking into the mainstream music arena out of the grunge styles of the early 90’s, they continue to tour, offering audiences an alternative and industrial rock show filled with passionate performances and visually dynamic staging.

Sew What? Inc has supplied backdrops for the band for several tours now.  The two most recent tours both offering opportunity to create unique one-of-a-kind specialty drapery for the band.

For this dynamic shimmer pink tiger backdrop, we had the challenge of combining multiply layers of cloth, along with graphic elements via our wide format printer.

We started with a digitally printed Heavy Knit backdrop, with the tiger graphics printed in heavy saturated black ink.  The band name Garbage was printed as an outline, so that we would be able to use the guidelines for later cutting away the surface area applique cloth.

The artist wanted to offer the audience the fascination of the femme, glimmer shimmery hot pink of the background, with the stark contrast of the black and white tigers in their pouncing poses.  Shimmer mylar dot fabric in fuchsia was selected for the project as it gives a solid bold hot pink that is super reflective. It has a disco ball effect under direct lighting conditions.

Here is a video showing the drape in use at a concert:

For another contrasting look for their summer outdoor festival shows, we enjoyed crafting a pleated “shimmer scrim” in black and blue/green tones for the band.  This is such a unique textile! It behaves like a real sharkstooth scrim with both front and back lighting effects – as well as bringing a shimmery glimmer of iridescence due to the mylar threads that are woven into the cloth.

In this shop photo, you see just how unique the cloth is – it almost gives an “underwater” effect.  Quite dramatic!

Want to know more about what we do and who we are? Sew What? Inc. has a fascinating Company History, and is proud of the wide variety of theatrical venues and many designs that we’ve manufactured over the years. To view some of our notable theater curtain designs, check out our drapery portfolio.

25 09, 2017

Sew What? Featured in Online Magazine

By |September 25th, 2017|Company, Digital Printing, News, Rent What Team, Sew What Team|1 Comment

A few months ago, Megan was contacted by Visual Connections, a not-for-profit trade association for the print and graphics industry in Australia. Since Megan is from Australia, they were interested in telling her story, and the story of Sew What?, in their online magazine, Visual Impact. Of course, Megan was happy to assist, and so (working with the time difference between here and Australia), they scheduled a time for a phone interview.

The resulting article, included in the Sept/Oct 2017 edition of Visual Impact, discusses how Megan started Sew What?, the growth of the company, and how the company added Grand Format digital printing to its offerings.

It really is a well-done article. Want to read it? Click here for a link to the article.

12 09, 2017

Custom Digital Print Adds Color And Excitement To Church Staging

By |September 12th, 2017|Digital Printing, Fabrics, Products, Projects|1 Comment

WOW – Who would have thought that a gorgeous, illuminating stage like this…..

Could have been derived from such a simple image as this…..?

When our clients contact us with custom drapery requests, we always try to make sure we can fully envision what they want the soft goods to look like when they are finished so that we are all on the same page about the end result. This way we can be as sure (as possible) that our custom-built digitally printed drapery will work perfectly with their venue, tour, production, or special event.

But I have to admit, when Caleb McNaughton from Highpoint Church in Aurora, Colorado sent us the above image to be digitally printed, at first I thought they were interesting but wondered why they might want something  so…uncolorful.  I can completely see now! Printed on Crystal Poplin, the excellent translucency of this fabric will allow for a multitude of different moods to be created. By simply changing the theatrical lighting that is splashed upon it, they now have an endless amount of looks and backgrounds for their stage, using the exact same soft goods.  Versatile, Dynmaic, and Brilliant!