Rose Brand Know-How Blog

Entertainment & event production tips, news & stories

Rose Brand Fabricates 335’ Curtain for Ann Hamilton Art Installation

Rose Brand is proud to have worked with artist Ann Hamilton on her uniquely interactive art installation, "The Event of a Thread," featured at the Park Avenue Armory in NYC. The artist drew inspiration from the Armory's enormous 55,000-sq ft Wade Thompson Drill Hall, as the installation itself is massive.

The exhibit features 42 swings, intended for visitor use, which animate a giant 335' curtain. Visitors engage on a multi-dimensional level as they interact with one another on the swings and simultaneously experience the flow of the curtain, readings, sounds, and live performance.

Rose Brand sewed the massive, white silk curtain that connects to the 42 swings through a series of ropes and pulleys. It took 76 widths of silk fabric to complete the curtain, which is curved at the top and reaches a height of over 41'. Discussion between Ann Hamilton and Rose Brand's Isabel Martinez determined the final seaming and finishing. Sewers used the 4-thread method for seaming as well as bottom and side finishing, to provide the strongest and least visible seam possible on the silk fabric. The top finish consisted of white twill webbing covered in the same white silk fabric, with grommets on 18” centers.

The exhibit opens on December 5, 2012 and continues through mid-January.


Visit http://bit.ly/rb-customsewing to see other custom sewing projects and to more fully understand the breadth of Rose Brand's custom sewing capability; or call 800-223-1624 to speak with a Rose Brand rep about your project.

View photos of the exhibit here.

Rose Brand Constructs the Largest Compound Curved Indoor Screen Ever Created for Beyonce's Humanitarian Day Performance

On August 10, 2012 special guests of the United Nations filled the General Assembly Hall in New York to celebrate World Humanitarian Day. This day honors the humanitarian efforts that take place across the globe and seeks to motivate active participation in social causes. During the event, Beyoncé inspired the crowd with a performance in front of projected images of humanitarians working and helping those in need. At the request of the SuperUber design company, Rose Brand developed the projection screen for the event, the largest compound curved indoor screen ever created.

The 1,000 pound, 46’ high x 224’ wide screen was pieced together in Rose Brand’s NJ warehouse by a team of sewers who worked around the clock for two days due to the urgency of the task. Once hung, the screen molded to the unique architecture of the General Assembly Hall. Building a screen of this magnitude, in a room that was not designed for theatrical lighting projections, made the choice of screen fabric particularly important. SuperUber chose the white/white blackout lining after testing a number of fabrics, due to its opaque characteristics. It insured that light would not transmit behind the screen, and it created a flawless projection surface.


After fabricating and transporting the massive screen to the UN, Rose Brand provided a complete rigging package and installation service with the help of the Local 1 Stagehands. Due to the lack of rigging points, permanent steel plates had to be welded into the existing structure in order to support the weight of the 6,000 pound supergrid system. Once installed, the screen was comprised of ten synchronized and mapped projections that created one giant image. The screen surrounded the audience with a 240 degree immersive projection, creating an unforgettable and inspirational experience for those in attendance.

 

Learn more about Rose Brand's Projection Solutions.

View behind the scenes photos on our Facebook Page.

Rose Brand Constructs Enormous Cylindrical Projection Screen for Pan Am Games Opening Ceremony.

Every four years, athletes from countries of the Americas compete in the Pan American Games.   Each year, the host country tries to outdo their predecessor by creating a spectacular artistic presentation in the opening ceremony.  The 2011 games taking place in Guadalajara, Mexico were no exception with an Opening Ceremony reportedly costing $20 million.

Rose Brand was instrumental in the construction of the focal point of the ceremony, a three dimensional moving projection screen.  The screen's steel frame boasted a circumference of 350 feet and hung in the center of the stadium.  The projection screen, made out of Rose Brand’s Rip Stop Nylon, was 104 feet tall and offered a 360° cylindrical projection surface.

PRG Technologies, the engineer on the project, engaged Rose Brand to build the projection screen in just a single week.  In order to fabricate the three dimensional screen, Rose Brand sewed together 3,200 yards of Rip Stop Nylon. The screens were made up of two pairs of panels measuring  104’9” x 98’ and 104’9” x 51’. The enormous projection screens, equivalent in height to a ten story building, were adorned with 3,600 D-rings that were hand sewn onto the panels to give the projection screen mobility. View the sewing plans used by Rose Brand here: projection screen plans.pdf

The halo at the top consisted of 72 overlapping fabric panels each measuring 22 feet in length. Since it was critical that each panel's measurements were identical, we used Rose Brand's Precision Laser Cutting process to ensure accuracy. View the sewing plans for the halo here: halo plans.pdf

The Construction of the 2012 Academy Award Main Stage Drapery

Here's the backstory behind the retro 1920's style main drape, viewed by nearly 40 million people on the night of the 2012 Academy Awards. Enlisted with less than 2 months before the air date, Rose Brand fabricated this beautifully designed and elaborately detailed curtain for Hollywood's biggest event.

The Academy sought to recreate the aura of the opulent movie palaces of the early 20th century. The vision included a swag valance that had hung in the Kodak Theatre many years ago. Production Designer, John Myhre, provided Rose Brand with photographs of historic movie theatre stages that represented the look and feel that he wanted to achieve. With John’s design in hand, we searched for the right fabric and trim to recreate an old time masterpiece.

While many theatre curtains are made from inherently flame retardant fabric to insure the flame retardant’s longevity, we knew that our show curtain needed to last just a single night. This expanded the variety of fabrics from which we could choose the perfect weight, texture and color to match the designer's objectives. After testing a number of fabrics, the Academy chose Rose Brand’s 21 Oz. Marvel Velour in a custom dyed, rich red color.

With the fabric set, attention turned to the development of the trim and fringe. The design called for 4’8” high trim that consisted of 204 hand sewn medallions, a sequin lace, woven gold banding, and a custom 30” bouillon fringe. Rose Brand flew Brent Porter, the head of our East Coast Sewing Department, to our LA facility to supervise the rapid development of the spectacularly ornate curtain.

To insure that there were no surprises during installation at the Kodak theatre, we transported the finished 40' x 80' curtain to a nearby community college theatre where it was installed on stage and inspected. It hung beautifully.

The 2012 Academy Awards grand drape weighed nearly 2,000 pounds, and it required 8 people to move both of the custom boxes that Rose Brand built to transport it. It was sewn at 150% fullness and featured 210 linear feet of fringe and a custom band. It was a spectacular recreation of a retro 1920’s grand drape, exactly as the Academy had envisioned it.

 

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Developing a Venetian Contour Curtain and Sophisticated Motion Control System

 

Here’s an interesting story on a gorgeous grand drape and rigging project that we did for Delta Stage, who was hired by Holy Land Experience to install theatrical equipment & lighting for the new Church of All Nations. Delta brought Rose Brand on board to help with certain aspects of the job, including the development of a Venetian Contour curtain and a motion control system. The objectives of Rose Brand’s project included:

 

1)      Enhancing architectural esthetics with a beautiful grand drape for the pulpit.

2)      Providing a curtain control system that could raise and lower the curtain in a wide variety of patterns.

3)      Controlling other scenic elements with the same motion control system.

4)      Enabling efficient installation of the curtain and system on-site.

 

A Venetian Contour curtain has vertical lift lines in back, which raise and lower independently to allow the curtain to be shaped as it’s opened or closed. Rose Brand developed the curtain out of silver Lurex sheer fabric, which gave the grand drape a silky, flowing, elegant look as it’s drawn by the lift lines.

 

In terms of the motion control system, Rose Brand Project Managers developed a sophisticated, modular solution comprised of 16 ADC winches, eight programmable Raynok controllers, and truss. The controllers were integrated with motors that controlled both the main curtain as well as the numerous independent tracks of a mid-stage traveler curtain.

 

The main curtain lift system consisted of eight individual segments of truss. Each segment had multiple winches and a controller mounted on it. The modularity of the 63’ long system enabled us to build, program, and test it locally while prepping it for easy, remote installation. Once the system was fully tested, it shipped to the Orlando theatre for installation by a Rose Brand Project Manager working with the Delta Stage Lighting crew.

 

See more information on Technical Project Management for design and installation of curtains, curtain track, and stage rigging. 

The Tab Curtain...Explained

We receive a lot of phone calls from people who are curious about Tab curtains. Tab curtains are often used as grand drapes to provide both dramatic impact when revealing a stage and as a practical way to hide off-stage elements that would otherwise be seen in the wings.

The following video provides a sense of how a Tab Curtain looks and operates. For more information on different types of curtains please see the Custom Sewing section of our Web site. You'll find more curtain demonstrations as well as explanations of different curtain types, curtain fullness, curtain finishes and more. See the main body content of the page as well as the links along the left side. 

How One Event Designer Got Gotham Glam With A Sensational Digitally Printed Backdrop

When we introduced Matthew David of 360 Design Events LTD. to our digital printing on specialty fabrics, he knew he had found the perfect way to produce his vision for a grand format backdrop at a Lincoln Center gala event. As explained to Matthew, our Lightbox fabric is made to be lit from behind. When the fabric is direct-dye printed and backlit, it produces a brilliantly luminescent effect that’s similar to viewing film on a light box. Having viewed a backlit fabric sample, Matthew said, “I didn’t know you could do that with fabric!”

                      

Comparison of "unlit" sample of digitally printed lightbox fabric (left), vs. "backlit" sample (right).

Matthew utilized the virtues of the fabric perfectly. His brilliant design for the Lincoln Center gala featured a 30’ high x 60’ wide, stylized image of NYC’s iconic skyline and East River. When backlit, the skyline and river appeared to glow from the very lights depicted within the image itself. The effect was simultaneously realistic and fantastical (see skyline image below). More...

Rose Brand Custom Sewing – We’re Not Just Drapes.

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       Markey's kiosk with attached monitor & magnetic branding piece at bottom

Markey’s Rental and Staging specializes in creative solutions for corporate theater, live event management and audio visual presentation. They pride themselves on offering well-maintained, high-quality equipment. So when their new digital signage kiosks came back dinged and dented from their first gig at an event in Atlanta, GA , Markey’s knew they had to come up with a better solution to maintain the look of their gear.The powder covered metal kiosks are meant to hold 52” LCD monitors in high traffic areas, so there is a high likelihood of nicks and dents. Markey’s Event Operation’s Manager Patrick Rhoda said, “I’ve worked with Rose Brand in the past and I’ve seen and used fitted truss covers on gigs. I thought Rose Brand would be able to help me out.”

So Patrick hopped onto our web site and shot us an e-mail via sales@rosebrand.com, to ask if we could develop an appropriate cover that would keep the kiosks looking good, despite the abuse they receive during a rental engagement. He was advised that we custom sew almost anything imaginable and that we could certainly develop the custom covers he sought.

Patrick and his Rose Brand sales rep decided that our Tendo fabric was the best choice for the project. Tendo is a washable, wide-width, Trevira® IFR, 4-way stretch fabric, sold exclusively by Rose Brand. After Patrick provided the measurements, our sales person engaged Rose Brand’s sewing team to create a sample cover.

Rose Brand has made fabric covers for various applications such as speakers, tripods, and other studio equipment. However, this project involved a one-of-a-kind piece, for this particular A/V stand. Even though the customer gave us initial dimensions to work with, creating the initial sample was like making a gown for a mail order bride! More...

The Benefits of a ShowLED Star Drop Curtain

ShowLED Wall

Rose Brand ShowLED curtains are often used as backdrops to achieve a programmable starry night effect. There are two versions of ShowLED -- Classic and Chameleon. Classic uses a white LED, which emits a cool, blue-white light. Chameleon uses an RGB LED, which can produce virtually any color, including a warm amber-white light. ShowLED LEDs are specifically designed for installation in fabric and scenery. Rose Brand has sold and rented ShowLED curtains for events as formal as a Presidential ball (i.e., Obama's inauguration) and as traditional as a corporate event or high school stage performance.

Rose Brand ShowLED curtains are easy to set up, easy to maintain, and are cost effective. When you buy or rent a ShowLED drape, you're paying for a complete package -- the drape (fitted with LEDs) and the LED controller. Nothing else is required to program the drape.

The device that controls the intensity, color, and frequency of the LED twinkle is designed for both novice and professional users.More...

A Light, Airy and Aesthetic Alternative to an Event Tent

California Canopy

Photo Provided by Austin Johnston for AK Johnston Production Design 

While preparing for an outdoor summer wine and art festival event at a luxury country club in California, A K Johnston Production Design created a wonderful new concept that became the perfect alternative to a standard event tent. Their vision took advantage of the venue's gorgeous panoramic views, which would've been obscured by the walls of a traditional outdoor enclosure. With the help of Rose Brand they created "The California Canopy," a structure that emphasizes the airiness, beauty and organic nature of any outdoor venue.

Rose Brand manufactured the custom-sewn canopy from white Poly Muslin; a cloth that drapes and swags beautifully. Rose Brand also developed matching truss covers from white Tendo stretch-fabric to soften the look of the supports and help them blend-in beautifully with the canopy.More...