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12 12, 2018

Meet The SW and RW Staff, Part 26–Danny

By |December 12th, 2018|Company, Rent What Team, Sew What Team|1 Comment

Next in our “Meet The SW?/RW? Staff” Blog Series, I want to introduce you to one of the most artistic and proficient employees here at the company—Danny Garcia, the hard-working and remarkable coordinator for our Printing Department. Often working long weekday hours and on nights and weekends, he goes above and beyond to get the printing job done right for our clients, and on-time. Not to mention how exceptionally helpful he is with all of our warehouse departments, and that he is just an all-around nice guy, too. We are so fortunate to have him on our team, and would love for you to take a minute to read a little bit more about this indispensable member of the Whatter’s Family.

When did you first start at Sew What? What were you originally hired to do, and how have your duties changed since working here?

I was hired in October of 2015 as the printed operator, working with the graphics coordinator they currently had on staff. But by 2016, I was moved up to become the Printing Department Coordinator for SW. Basically, I organize and assist with client-provided graphics and artwork and file preparation, color correcting, and the actual digital printing of the soft goods. Then I work with the QC and Inspection Dept. to make sure that all of the printing outcomes are what the sales rep, and the client, had requested.

If you could take a vacation to anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?

It would have to be Paris, France— the art and photographic history there completely fascinates me, and I would really love to explore the museums and monuments in person someday. (Not to mention the amazing food!)

What kind of work did you do before coming to Sew What?

I have a background working in one of the relics we don’t see much anymore—a photo lab (with actual dark rooms). However, I have been working as a printer operator/technician for over 17 years, and really seem to have found my wheelhouse! Just previously to working here at SW, I was a printer operator for a company in Glendale that did a great deal of marketing for the Hollywood industry—movies, TV Shows, up-and-coming bands, etc. We also did general types of digital printing, including banners, retail, signs for car lots, etc.

Do you have a special talent?

With my history of working with photographers and photographs, I’ve found that I have a good eye for details— especially with Pantone color matching. It’s a great skill to have with this field in particular!

What is your favorite memory/circumstance/event from being part of the Sew What? family?

I have really enjoyed all the ways that the company promotes social gatherings with one another, and the many special occasions that we like to celebrate together, too. Activities like having a Taco Truck and Ice Cream Truck come by to treat everyone with delicious food over the summer, and the yearly company car wash was also a really surprising and wonderful added bonus for the staff that I had never seen before working here.

What is your favorite sports team/TV Show/Book/Movie?

I am a self-proclaimed LA-based sports NUT—I really love watching Dodgers, Angels, Rams, Chargers, Ducks, Galaxy—you name it. If it’s an LA sports team playing, I’m probably watching! Am thrilled that there are so many incredibly teams right here in my hometown. I especially enjoy going to games in person whenever possible.

What are some of your hobbies?

I am a huge fan of all kinds of music—from Jazz to Rock to Country, and everything in between. There’s nothing better than sitting at home relaxing, listening to some great music on a lazy afternoon.

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

Last year we worked on a complex series of digitally printed backdrops and multi-media drapes for Yusuf Islam’s tour that were totally different than anything I had previously worked on before. There were various different pieces of digitally printed drapes (printed on both Crystal Poplin and Heavy Knit), that were then intricately cut and sewn into elaborate shapes and structures based on the client’s provided graphics. By combining in blackout lining and Sharkstooth Scrim (to help provide for some extremely cool lighting effects), these mixed media pieces were some of the most elaborate custom drapery I have ever worked on. Sewing and printing had to be absolutely on point for this genuinely unique design. As a team, we were enormously proud of how truly fantastic they turned out.

https://youtu.be/qi_kjRBWKoU

Anything more about your time here at SW?

I really appreciate how “family-oriented” the team here at SW is….everyone is so much more than just an employee. We all care about each other’s welfare and morale, far beyond that of just being “co-workers”. It’s been such an eye-opening experience working for a company like this, and I absolutely love the family-vibe!

28 11, 2018

Marc Anthony Digital Print For His Legacy Tour

By |November 28th, 2018|Clients, Digital Printing|1 Comment

Sew What? Inc. had the opportunity to really pull a rabbit out of a hat for the current Marc Anthony tour. Not only was the task at hand a challenge in terms of sewing – it was also a challenge based on the very limited time frame. This was our moment to shine by performing some super-high-speed-sewing! Nonstop printing and stitching were in order, and the SW team pulled out all the stops to create this 46’h x 75’w digitally printed brail lift drape in just one week.

Wondering what a brail drape is? The term brail in fact comes from the maritime industry. Brails, in a sailing ship, are small lines used to haul in or up the edges (leeches) or corners of sails, before furling. On a ship rig, these brails are most often found on the mizzen sail. The command is, hale up the brails, or, brail up the sails. Certainly not to be confused with Braille, a tactile writing system for the blind.  In this instance the lines are use to lift and unfurl the stage drapery to create a reveal and cover effect that can be operated remotely via the motorized lift system.

For this project, there were a total of 16 vertical lift lines placed strategically on the back side of the drape. We craft these as near-invisible sewn vertical lines with O-rings running vertically to capture the aircraft cable that is used for lifting the drape. Each lift line runs the full 46 feet in height – so there were over 700 running feet of lift line alone on this giant drapery with nearly 500 hand applied o-rings on the back side.

Matching the printed pattern is also a key component. In this case the print was printed onto 9 custom sized widths of fabric. For durability and a gorgeous lighting surface, we chose to direct print onto our crystal poplin. It is important that each printed segment is lined up perfectly before it is sewn. We used thousands of sewing pins to pre-pin by hand all the sections of cloth. So great attention is given to the craft of assembling the drape. Print. Seam. Add lift lines.  Finish top, sides and bottom. Add hardware. Insert all the O-rings. Inspect. Fold and ship!

It was a pleasure to work with the Marc Anthony team and specifically with his talented designer Travis Shirley and Roly Garbalosa of Garba Music.  Sew What? Inc. was delighted to be a key player in the production of this amazing arena tour!

22 10, 2018

Shinedown Continues To “Shine” On World Tour With More Digitally Printed Drapes

By |October 22nd, 2018|Products, Projects|1 Comment

I recently wrote up a blog post showcasing a really cool digitally printed main stage drape for the always exciting and totally gripping American rock group, Shinedown. Having a simple, yet memorable, concert tour backdrop has been working out great for them on their current international tour (and even greater for their die-hard fan’s fantastic photo-ops!).

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Being able to have “signature” set pieces on stage with them—no matter how large or small the venues might be—was very important to their stage designers. This way they would be sure that the band’s inimitable branding was easily visible for audiences both near and farther from the stage. They are always making sure that all of their fans to have the most engaging experiences at each and every one of their shows!

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In light of that, they then also had SW make a few smaller custom-built digitally printed “banners” for this tour, that could be used both as either stationary set pieces or with a kabuki system in order to create a special “reveal” throughout different sections of their shows. These three different types of images printed onto 20’h x 10’ banners worked wonderfully as truly dynamic stage sets. Printed on rugged, tour-friendly FR Heavy Knit, the graphics on these drapes have a uniquely edgy look about them. And adding dramatic lighting, pyrotechnic effects, and other electrifying design embellishments all helped to complement the absolutely striking overall motif for this tour stage.

#Repost @tat2troublemaker13: @zmyersofficial @bkerchofficial @shinedown #shinedown #littlerock

You can check out a great assortment of photos of these exceptionally distinctive drapes in our new Flickr Gallery, taken by some extremely amazing photographers just this past summer. And better yet, see them in person at a live show while this incredible band is still out on tour through next March. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us and speak with a dedicated sales rep today, as we would love to also provide you with a custom digital printed drape, backdrop, or banner for your upcoming tour, exclusive event, trade show, production, or any other occasion in which you want to add a one-of-a-kind touch. Surprisingly affordable, remarkably easy to hang, and undeniably unforgettable—our custom digital prints are a surefire way to completely dazzle your audience!

13 03, 2018

Dance Companies Use Digital Prints To Dazzle Their Audiences

By |March 13th, 2018|Digital Printing, Products|1 Comment

It’s kind of crazy to think that springtime is already right around the corner! But with springtime coming, we are happy to see an influx of production designers for dance competitions utilizing our amazing digital printing abilities to create the most fabulous backdrops and banners for their special events. From gorgeous performance backdrops to step & repeat banners highlighting the dance company’s logos and personal branding (and even show or company sponsors), we can help set the stage for the performance or create an effective and easy way for the crowds to remember the shows long after they are over.

This digitally printed street scene is a beautiful backdrop to the signing and dancing of Los Alamitos High School Sound FX Advanced Mixed Competitive Show Choir

With an extensive range of substrates that are now able to be printed onto, we can construct a one-of-a-kind piece for dance companies that will last for many years to come. And it is tremendously exciting that with today’s technology, any photo file with appropriate resolution can be printed on fabric with absolutely incredible results. With a variety of substrates to choose from, digital printing enables you to magnify photo quality images into stunning custom theatrical and scenic digital backdrops or banners for all kinds of dance productions.

Need to stay within a tight budget this time around? Why not just mix and match custom digitally-printed soft goods with a blend of gorgeous drapes from our Rental Specialty Drapery Collections to get your exceptional look. By combining rental and custom sewn drapes for your recitals, productions, and competitions, you will have more options than ever before to help make your shows even more sensational than you thought possible. But mingling together digitally-printed banners with rental legs, swags, and backdrops, you can now easily design a look that fits your event’s own unique style and motif.

Photo Courtesy: Kristin McQuaid

Contact a representative today to see how we can help create an unforgettable look for your dance recital or production, too!

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.