Tension Fabric Displays: Branding with Backdrops
| Posted on 8/7/23

Tension Fabric Displays: Branding with Backdrops

When using a backdrop for branding, you don’t want your message getting lost in the background. The way to keep it front and center? Tension Fabric Displays. (Hint: We just made them easier to order.) We talked to three clients who went beyond event backdrops and designed their Tension Fabric Displays with modern marketing mastery.

A woman standing in front of four tension fabric displays in different sizes printed with various marketing designs.

The Whole Package

Ideal for trade shows, meetings and events, tension fabric displays give your branding, products and services a serious spotlight. And with tension fabric printing on both sides, you get to double the advertising, whether you stick with the same message or mix it up on either side.


The key to all that star power? Dye sublimation printing. It’s a technique where specific inks react to heat and transform into a gas. The gas then penetrates into polyester or polymer. The result? Vivid artwork and graphics that are actually embedded into the fabric, not just sitting on top of it (which looks duller and less impactful).

When you print online with Smartpress, you get four sizes to choose from (2’W, 3’W, 8’W and 10’W), so there’s a custom display fit for any occasion. Think branding backdrops with one central logo or multiple logos in a step and repeat pattern, product presentations, event kiosks or trade show booths. Design them for retail spaces, as directional signage, video backdrops or photo backdrops – even temporary cubicles.


The best part? (Other than the fact that all eyes will be on you, of course.) They’re simple to set up and entirely portable with an included carrying case. The stand comes in your choice of width and secures with an interlocking push-button system, while the pillowcase-like stretch fabric slips snuggly over it. It doesn’t get easier than that.


Hint: Ready to order? Just choose your size from the dropdown on the product page, make your custom selections and upload your design file.

A woman in a black shirt and jeans putting together a tension fabric display printed with ski boot marketing.

Tension Fabric Display: 3-Foot



“Every rep has the hardware for the display, so each season we change out the graphic.”



Case Study #1 – The Reusable ROI

Oberalp Group’s Trade Marketing Coordinator Zach Seusy needed to call special attention to a new ski boot from Dyanfit. A revolutionary boot called for a revolutionary display.


“We utilize the tension fabric display during our yearly sell-in campaigns,” said Seusy. “After sell-in is over, we use the displays throughout the year at events, fundraisers – really anywhere we set up a table.”


For Seusy, tension fabric backdrops uniquely fit the brief as they’re “a lightweight, easily portable option for our team. Every rep has the hardware for the display, so each season we change out the graphic,” he said. “This saves us on cost and is a more sustainable option, as we recycle the old fabrics locally.”

And as a marketing coordinator, Seusy couldn’t help but think beyond the fabric graphic. Utilizing Smartpress’ premium business printing services, he paired it with a Foam Board Sign that sat inside the boot and a custom Car Magnet that adhered to an in-house display for events and retailers.


It’s the kind of multi-piece marketing that more than hits the mark.


Hint: Want to change out your graphic like Seusy? Our online print shop has Tension Fabric Display Replacements, too. Just choose the size that fits your existing stand.

A woman wearing a black shirt and jeans standing in front of a tension graphic printed with Lightraiders Adventure Bible System.

Tension Fabric Display: 10-Foot



“We heard the phrase, ‘I saw this booth and had to come over and see what it’s all about’ a lot.”



Case Study #2 – The Compelling Concept

For Lightraiders’ Ryan Huckabay, tension fabric displays had to do the one thing all marketing has to do: Get people interested. As any marketer will tell you, that concept sounds simple but is anything but.


“We’re launching a youth Bible study curriculum that employs a storybook-based fantasy tabletop game [that’s] not a traditional curriculum style, so we needed to get out and meet our potential customers at conferences and conventions to tell them about it,” said Huckabay.


To get their displays just right, Huckabay and his team went on a design reconnaissance mission at other conferences, gauging what they thought worked and didn’t work for other booths.

“The booths with tension fabric displays looked the most professional and engaging,” he said. “Another important part was the ability to coordinate with tablecloths for a ‘full experience’ booth. We’re so glad that Smartpress was able to meet all these needs.”


Exhibiting at homeschool conferences and church resource conventions, Huckabay’s custom displays met his strategic needs, too.


“We needed a striking display that would draw people in to ask, ‘What is Lightraiders?’ [It’s] been extremely successful to that end, gaining us new customers and newsletter subscribers, even drawing in an organization that is interested in bringing our fantasy realm to the screen,” he said. “We heard the phrase, ‘I saw this booth and had to come over and see what it’s all about’ a lot.”


Hint: Have questions about custom printing your own displays? Get your answers here: Tension Fabric Displays FAQ.

A woman in a black outfit putting a tension graphic on its frame and standing it up.

Tension Fabric Display: 8-Foot



“The opportunity for unique printing on either side provided us with the flexibility we were after.”



Case Study #3 – The Two-Sided Strategy

As DASH Creative Strategy’s founder, Daniel Shaker’s tension fabric banners had to beautifully highlight products for a client rebrand without adding literal weight to that client’s load. Smartpress’ online printing services were up to the task.


“From a branding standpoint, the fabric displays provided the perfect canvas to proudly highlight our client’s keystone product lineup,” Shaker said. “We wanted to display products as large and crisp as possible, and the opportunity for unique printing on either side provided us with the flexibility we were after.”


That double-sided printing ensures custom banners capitalize on foot traffic coming from either direction. It’s an option that can easily be overlooked but shouldn’t be – and isn’t when you print with Smartpress.

“The quality of the print was tremendous,” said Shaker. “With different prints on either side of our displays, I was expecting some color bleed once the displays were up, but I was happily surprised that there was none whatsoever. [Both] sides had the true, rich color we desired.”


And as for lightening his client’s load? Tension fabric displays came through once again.


“Our client, Mauro Provisions, often has cooking equipment, products and giveaways to carry, and we wanted to make sure the displays wouldn’t add significantly to the setup and travel process,” said Shaker. “It took less than 10 minutes to fully set up for the first time and was an absolute breeze to maintain and adjust as needed.”


Hint: Like the idea of fabric but want it on a wall instead of a stand? As a customer-focused online printer, we’ve got you (and your marketing) covered with Silicone Edge Graphics, which install easily and display in recyclable aluminum frames.



A Do-It-All Display

From event backdrops to full marketing packages, tension fabric displays do it all with enviable print quality and an easy setup. And whether you feature products, logos or graphics, these banners ensure your message takes target audiences from interest to engagement every time.

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