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From Floor to Ceiling


Category Icon TestWhat is the saying . . . “In like a lion, out like a lamb”? With the Exhibitor Show falling a couple weeks earlier than last year, my February ended and March began with the supervising of our display set-up at the show. For those of you who have been on a convention floor during set-up you know how crazy that can be. But I had two things going for me this year that I knew would help ease the chaos. First, I was teamed up with my colleague, partner in crime and Optima AE, Brianna Ziomek, who had taken care of all the required show kit paperwork and everything was ordered to perfection. Second, TS Crew was our EAC again this year so I knew I was in good hands.

I am not going to bore you with all the details of our booth set-up, but two things happened on the first day of set-up that stuck in my mind.

The riggers showed up to assemble and install our Pillowcase Hanging Sign. I handed the set-up drawing to the rigger and he immediately said, “Oh man, this isn’t a circle or a square”. The shape of our hanging sign is hard to describe. It is a horseshoe shape that is about six feet high on the closed end and tapers to around three feet on the open end. Yes folks, we are constructing tubular hanging signs that are more than just circles and squares. The riggers quickly followed our set-up instructions and assembled the frame in a flash, installed the pillowcase skin, located the hanging points, shot their lasers to the ceiling and had that sign hung in record time. The dye-sub pillowcase skin fit to the frame like a glove.

Next, our crew began to install our InStep Dye-Sub Carpet. Since the carpet is only 1/8” thick, there is a special 1/4” polyurethane pad that is first installed. The pad can be easily cut to channel wiring. After the pad was down, the InStep was quickly installed. Before the protective Visqueen was applied, I received so many complements on how rich and striking the color was on the carpet.

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Fast forward to the opening of Exhibitor 2015. Most of the comments that I heard during the show were about our hanging sign and our carpet. There were comments on how bright the colors were and how the colors on the hanging sign, exhibit structures and carpet all looked similar and worked together (a requirement for our G7 Color Management Professional certification).

I was surprised at how many people who visited our booth were under the impression that the only type of tubular hanging signs that we produce are the basic circle, square and rectangle. We opened our metal shop back in 2012 and almost from the start we have been bending tube for custom shaped structures used in both hanging and freestanding applications. With over three years of experience under our belt, some of those structures have been fairly sophisticated.

When visitors stepped into our booth their first comment was, “Boy this floor is comfortable!” followed by how rich and vibrant the colors were on the carpet followed by “When did you start printing carpet?” The first InStep carpet project that I was involved with was back in 2009. The carpet was used for a large 60’x40’ Adidas exhibit. The exhibit designer used InStep to simulate a running track that ran from the front to the back of the booth space, where the track image went straight up two stories on a SEG panel. It was an impressive and creative use of the carpet and SEG. InStep is perfect for bringing your message or brand onto the floor and can be used for full-color exhibition flooring, mats, carpet tiles or runners to direct your audience and promote your product.

So, when you are working on your next trade show or event project and want to think outside the box (or circle), want to brighten things up and display your message from floor to ceiling – think of Optima.

About the Author

Rich Fava is an Account Executive at Optima Graphics.
He has spent his career in the graphics world since earning his Design degree and in Trade Show since the early 90s.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, other Authors, Optima Graphics or Taylor Corp.

  1. April 3, 2015 at 10:23 am

    Great write up…Thank you, Shawn

    • April 3, 2015 at 6:07 pm

      Shawn, thanks for your comment.

  2. Michael Strawn
    April 29, 2015 at 10:08 am

    Rich, this is a good one!

    Thank you, Michael

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