Vinyl printing

by Simon McClelland Morris
Wall graphics, Exhibitions & Events, Window, Vinyl printing, Visual merchandising, Vinyl, Retail, Guides, Office graphics, Large format

The online search term that gets most of you to our website is 'vinyl printing', so here's a helpful piece about just that.

Vinyl printing is very popular. It's popular because of a few good reasons: it's cost-effective; it's adaptable; it's a material that has been around for a long time (so it's had a lot of R&D applied to it); it has plenty of variations; it can be used in many different environments, locations and for differing periods of time; it can be used indoors and outdoors, and it's usually straightforward to install (if you're a professional).

Let's expand on a few of these.

Because vinyl printing has been around for a long time there are a lot of people producing the substrate, and of course, using it. This means the demand is high and therefore the cost per roll of material can be cheap. But be warned, there are a lot of substandard cheap products out there. They don't perform well at the printing or installation stage. We've been down this road a few times, trying to source even cheaper products, but in reality, usually, it's just not worth trying to go cheaper and cheaper as the end result isn't up to the job. The customer is dissatisfied and we have to reprint jobs that don't go well. It's against our principles to offer a substandard product. Especially when vinyl is cost-effective enough without trying to go dirt cheap. You'll always get great quality vinyl from us.

Although environmentally friendly large format print substrates are still relatively in their infancy if you want an eco option for vinyl, we have a PVC-free, FSC® certified, and fire-rated product to achieve this. The material is premium non-woven wallpaper with a homogenous surface suitable for our latex water-based inks. It's black-backed, so perfect for applying to walls. Eco-substrates is an area of large format print that has a lot of ongoing Research & Development, all with the view of expanding the product range, making it as eco-friendly as it can be, and cost-effective too. At the moment eco vinyl is a bit more costly than standard PVC vinyl, but this is getting better, and compared to 10 years ago...

There are plenty of variations. Part One
Banner vinyl, white back removable self-adhesive vinyl, block out removable self-adhesive vinyl, white back semi-permanent self-adhesive vinyl, block out back semi-permanent self-adhesive vinyl, white back permanent self-adhesive vinyl, block out back permanent self-adhesive vinyl, clear self-adhesive vinyl, optically clear self-adhesive vinyl, block out white conformable self-adhesive vinyl, clear conformable self-adhesive vinyl, floor vinyl, printable coloured, metallics and special vinyl. Yes, there are lots of variations of printable vinyl. It comes in all shapes and sizes, lengths, widths, and possibilities for every application. This leads us to...

It can be used in many different environments, indoors and outdoors
Come to us with a request to produce graphics for a certain location or an environment, we'll more often than not find a suitable printable vinyl to use. (There is, of course, sometimes a different material better suited) Often a standard self-adhesive vinyl, choosing between removable short-term use, the mid-term use semi-permanent, and as you can probably tell from the name, permanent vinyl which is long-term will be great to apply to painted plaster walls, flooring (with or without an anti-slip seal), ceilings, windows, etc. And if you're looking for a product to apply to unusual surfaces or external use graphics, we can even install it to brickwork (see the stunning examples below) by using a conformable vinyl that is heated up and which molds around the textures of the brick or stonework. And of course, there's the mighty vinyl banner - the staple of outdoor advertising used for school fetes, village fares, open days, marques, exhibition promotion, event signage, and even building wraps.

There are plenty of variations Part Two
As we mentioned earlier, there are also printable coloured, metallics, and special types of vinyl which can be used to give you something a little bit extra or different. A couple of examples are the walls we produced for London Fashion Week, printing directly to diachronic vinyl, and the graphics for an exhibition stand we made for ourselves, where we used fluorescent vinyl and white + CMYK inks. We used the base layer of the vinyl as a point of interest and discussion, with the imagery and messaging printed on top.

And lastly, it's usually straightforward to install
One of the best features of self-adhesive vinyl is its relative ease to install. This makes it perfect to achieve a great finished product when placed in its end environment. We recommend using a skilled, professional installation team, but that's par for the course. There's really no point taking the time, to use a specialist graphics supplier like the Graphical Tree, if you're going to fall at the final hurdle and not install the job as well as it could be. No matter how manageable, and pliable vinyl might be, an experienced installer will know how a material will react to its setting, as well as all the tricks of the trade to make sure the job looks as good as it should do.

So if you'd like to speak to The Graphical Tree about your graphics. If you'd like to know more or see some product samples, get in touch. We'll be happy to hear from you.