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Welcome to the World of Wallcoverings

Banner Sign branches out into the world of interior décor with Digital Print Specialties.

Big Picture

Established in 1924, Banner Sign Company ( of Hazel Park, Michigan, had always branded itself as a traditional sign company. But, technological and economic fluctuations encouraged the company to expand into new markets.

“Over the past 20 years, changes in technology made it easy for anyone to own their own printers, and as of late, with the multitude of sign-shop franchise opportunities, we needed to assess our place in the market as we watched our market share dwindle,” says Nicole Piach, vice president and co-owner of Banner Sign.

So, to expand its profit-making center, in the fall of 2010 Banner Sign decided to branch out into the world of interior décor– and Digital Print Specialties ( was born. Digital Print Specialties offers custom-printed design solutions including canvas prints, printed fabrics, murals, and wallcoverings, as well as acoustic art panels for sound absorption.

“I felt if I gave the décor offerings an identity, they would be easier to market. I also felt that the name Digital Print Specialties would appeal to a different clientele that wouldn't necessarily think of using a ‘traditional sign company’ for their interior needs,” explains Piach.

Design Print Specialties allows clients to upload files (TIFF, JPEG, PNG, and PDF) in CMYK color mode directly to its site to create custom wallcoverings. “Resolution is the biggest issue when dealing with uploaded images. To illustrate this to the client, we will take their image and scale it to the final size, send them a proof, and let them make the decision on whether the quality is acceptable or not.” Then, a press proof is printed to ensure color accuracy.

“The most important aspect of a wallpaper project is the file setup. Making sure that the size is correct, that the overlaps are configured and the rolls are sequenced and documented correctly for an easy install,” says Piach. For this, the shop depends on Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.

When it’s time to print, Digital Print Specialties utilizes its Mimaki JV3 and JV33 as well as a Mimaki DS-1600 for textile printing. For the project depicted above, the shop output a 10 x 23-foot wallcovering for an Ontario, Canada business lobby, using the JV33 onto SeraMark woven fabric media.

“All of the Dreamscape commercial grade wallcoverings are popular for us, as is their Glass Tex films. SeraMark seems to be popular with people who rent their space because it can be up for a long duration of time but is still easily removed,” Piach explains.

For installation, Digital Print Specialties directs clients to the National Guild of Professional Paperhangers where they can find a professional installer within a 50-mile radius of their location. For local temporary displays, the shop does offer installation services upon request.




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