Fabrics bring museum exhibits to life

August 1, 2018

Visitors to the new Mississippi Civil Rights Museum in Jackson, Miss., are bound to be moved by the multiplicity of impressions, sounds, lights and graphic images that could only be presented with the aid of fabric. “This Little Light of Mine,” the name of the main exhibition at the Jackson museum, aims to immerse visitors …

Added value experiences keep the customers around

July 30, 2018

Delivering an added-value experience can help companies pull ahead of the pack, giving customers the incentive to return—while also elevating the business and the entire industry. It can be challenging to stand out from the scrum of companies clamoring for attention and business. More challenging still is inspiring the kind of loyalty that keeps customers …

Brenda Hagerty and Porcupine Canvas: sales and customer-focused marketing

July 1, 2018

“Cold calls are a thing of the past,” says Brenda Hagerty, co-owner and president of Porcupine Canvas Manufacturing Ltd. in Boucherville, Quebec, Canada. “Calling someone out of the blue to try to sell them something just doesn’t work in today’s industry. What clients want are our feet on the ground.” Hagerty’s history with Porcupine Canvas …

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Enhancing workplace (and worker) performance: automation and technology, equipment ROI and the new workforce

Canvas Innovations in Holland, Mich., focuses on custom marine canvas and upholstery products, says owner Chris Ritsema. The company also has a smaller portion of the business dedicated to other textile-related products, such as porch enclosures, shade sails, awning recovery, furniture covers, golf cart enclosures and a wealth of other custom projects. “We continue to …

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Stressed? Interactive textiles monitor humans and structures for potential damage

During the evening rush-hour traffic, the eight-lane 35W bridge over the Mississippi River in downtown Minneapolis suddenly collapsed on August 1, 2007, killing 13 people and injuring 145. The bridge was a continuous truss design, and an overstressed gusset plate at a critical joint was later determined as the weak point that contributed to its …

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Sign language: The fabric sign and banner market is hotter than ever

Ask average consumers what springs to mind when they hear the words “signs and banners,” and they’ll likely describe wayfinding placards and lengths of logo-imprinted fabric hanging from street poles. And although placards and pennants have their place in the sign and banner arena, this is a market segment with innovative and expanding applications in …

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Playing it safer: performance and protection for sports and recreation

June 1, 2018

Today, people of all ages are embracing active lifestyles: playing team sports, hitting the slopes, biking, climbing and hiking in all kinds of weather conditions, testing their mettle in boxing rings and martial arts classes or going for the gentler forms of exercise, like yoga. People are on the move, including retiring baby boomers who …

Geoff Kilmer at PhotoWorksGroup matches technology with clients to stay successful

We focus on identifying industries versus just finding customers to generate new business,” says Geoff Kilmer, founder and CEO of PhotoWorksGroup, Charlottesville, Va. “When we specialize in an industry, we become better known within it, which results in more references so we don’t have to sell as hard—and we can concentrate on doing a good …

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Selling shade, comfort, health and weather protection-in style

Who could have predicted, even 10 years ago, that Amazon would have driven shade and awning companies, let alone everyday retail stores, into changing their operations to meet the demand for overnight response rates? Yet today, more than we’d like to believe, sales behemoths like the online portal Amazon and similar services have taught consumers …