By Melissa Donovan
The combination of a textile printer that delivers stunning graphics, material constructed with the purpose to exhibit beautiful imagery, and a display system that holds up in high-traffic environments is a recipe for success. Many print service providers (PSPs) have one or more of these components. Companies offering all three are poised to capture business from notable and recognizable brands like those in the Fortune 500.
Above: An EFI VUTEk FabriVU 340 helped Cypress, CA-based DVC complete work for clothing retailer Old Navy–SEG Fframes with Fisher Textiles’ GF 4017 Soft Knit.
D’Andrea Visual Communications (DVC) began in 2005 as a boutique lithographic print shop. While it still offers lithography services, it also provides design and fabrication, grand format printing, cold foil printing, digital storefronts, installations, bindery, fulfillment, and distribution out of a 55,000 square foot location in Cypress, CA with 100 employees.
A significant amount of DVC’s work consists of digital fabric printing. When the PSP first introduced digital textile printing, it used a PressVU with UV ink from VUTEk—later purchased by EFI. In 2008, it switched to printing on fabric using dye-sublimation (dye-sub) on a Durst Image Technology US, LLC Rhotex textile printer.
Its newest printer is the EFI VUTEk FabriVU 340. A 3.4-meter or 133-inch wide dye-sub device, it offers ultra-high resolution up to 2,400 dpi. Color vibrancy, quality, speed, and water-based inks are key attributes. Combined, these features reduce DVC’s environmental impact.
“It is our duty to provide our clients with the highest visual impact possible. With the EFI VUTEk FabriVU 340, clients are getting graphics never seen before,” explains Scott Powers, founder/VP of sales, DVC.
In addition to the EFI VUTEk FabriVU 340, DVC also works with two EFI VUTEk ten-foot flatbeds, two 16-foot EFI VUTEk GS5000r roll-to-roll printers, a ten-foot HP, Inc. Latex 3600 device, and a ten-foot EFI VUTEk TX3250r dye-sub printer. This equipment lineup allows DVC to offer everything from the traditional banner, pop-up display, or vehicle graphic to unique wallcoverings and printed carpet.
Versatility with SEG
A popular application produced on the EFI VUTEk FabriVU 340 are silicone edge graphics (SEG) placed in aluminum frames. The printer provides the graphics with an unmatched visual quality and the framing systems used offer a polished finished look.
Fisher Textiles’ GF 8880 Opaque White, GF 4831 Heavy Knit, and GF 4017 Soft Knit product lines are preferred by DVC for this application. All are 100 percent polyester wrinkle-resistant fabrics.
SEG extrusions are offered from DVC. The company carries eight custom extrusions to guarantee the ability to meet customers’ specific graphic needs. They are available in 20-foot lengths or cut and built from 16×20 inches to 16×100 feet.
Powers says SEG frames—backlit and front lit—continue to gain in popularity. To combat market saturation and distance itself from the competition, DVC presents customers with options. For example, its latest endeavor is a wood pattern sublimated onto aluminum frames. The frame’s appearance resembles wood—ideal for high-end environments—but retains the durability and strength of aluminum.
One recent job produced by DVC was for Gap Inc. brand Old Navy. The clothing retailer requested large graphics with a “stunning” and “high-end flagship” look executed at a reasonable price point with options for graphics to be changed out.
SEG frames hit all of the criteria. Creating graphics for Old Navy stores throughout the U.S., Powers estimates the company printed around 7,500 square feet of media. It used its EFI VUTEk FabriVU 340 and Fisher Textiles’ GF 4017 Soft Knit.
The printer allowed DVC to meet the customer’s quick turnaround and produce high-quality images that almost looked three dimensional, according to Powers.
DVC offers its customers high-quality graphics with its arsenal of digital printers. The EFI VUTEk FabriVU 340 allows for a range of fabric-based applications, including SEG framing systems used in retail, exhibit, event, and corporate interiors.
May2018, Digital Output