Stretch Shapes is based out of Eugene, Oregon and serves the nation’s largest audio video companies, helping them create amazing sets and backgrounds for their events. This is made possible due to their expertise with stretch fabrics that are mounted on aluminum frames. They make event décor for everything from corporate conferences and product launches to international music festivals.
Since their customers are all over North America, Stretch Shapes ships their backdrops, fabric walls, and other scenic goods via mail. Here’s the issue – 75% of Stretch Shapes’ work is custom, and it’s hard to find boxes to fit all of the crazy shapes they create. Actually, those boxes just don’t exist.
Stretch Shapes is used to solving impossible problems – they do it for their customers on a regular basis. Senior Project Manager Josh Lippold solved this one. He came up with an innovative new use for their Autometrix Radium cutting table. First, he creates a pattern for the box in 3D modeling software. He lays 4’ wide sheets of cardboard onto the Radium cutting machine, and scores the cardboard so that it can be folded around the product just so. A precision box is made for every custom shape that needs to be shipped. Problem solved.
The Radium has solved other problems for Stretch Shapes as well. They’ve been growing exponentially as a company, and it was recently time to scale up production. Purchasing the Radium and automating the cutting process eliminated the need to hire more cutters – they invested in sewers instead. CEO and Founder Niko Mantele explains: “Cutting on the floor by hand was a pain,” he said. “Stretch fabric is slippery – it wants to move around. With the cutting machine, we can cut six layers at once. What one person could do in a day and a half we are now doing in two hours.”
Check out Stretch Shapes’ website for the best employee gallery ever and a look at some of the incredible custom event décor they have created. Interested in upping your game with automated cutting? Ask us for a software demo or contact an Automation Specialist today!