Archive for the ‘marquee linings’ Category

Marquee linings – keeping them clean

Monday, June 14th, 2010

Realistically in the marquee hire industry there are some things you can get away with and some things you can’t. For example, if you haven’t had chance to clean a dirty marquee roof you can generally get away with it if you hide it with a lining. What you can’t get away with is a dirty lining, this is the bit that transforms the marquee and needs to be clean.

These are the common causes for a dirty lining:

Dirty hands putting them up: You’ve just knocked in dirty stakes or lots of rusty nails before you have to put the lining up. Solution: Have disposable gloves or a pack of baby wipes in the car.

Dirt dripping down from the roof: Condensation forms in marquees, especially in ones without flooring or ones with breathable flooring (regular readers will know my hatred of that..). If the poles are dirty then that dirt will drip down on to your lovely linings. Solution: Keep muddy groundbars as groundbars and keep the cleanest poles for the roof sections.

Dirt from the ground: Linings can pick up dirt when they’re taken down and dropped on the ground or if there’s no flooring dirt can splash up on to curtain linings. Solution: Gather the linings in to a protective bag as they’re being taken down, avoid letting them drape on the floor if at all possible.

Dirt from transport: leaving linings lying around un-bagged means they can get dirty or damaged in transit. There’s nothing quite like the feeling of completing a really nice marquee only to look up and see a size 10 footprint in the middle of a roof lining.. Solution: Store marquee linings in protective bags whenever possible.

Thanks for reading.

Spencer.

Customers decorating your marquees

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

In the marquee hire trade it’s to be expected that sometimes people will want to decorate their marquees. The results can be stunning so there’s no problem there, the problems arrive when they’re not taken away properly afterwards.

The sort of things you come across are:

  • Bits of tape. If left on your metalwork or worse -your roofs and walls they can become a problem. The stickiness doesn’t go away so picks up dirt and ages your marquee prematurely. If there’s tape on your marquee take it off asap.
  • Glitter. This gets everywhere but is actually quite easy to clean off with soapy water.
  • Staples. If people have stapled things to your linings (trust me this happens regularly) then take them out straight away. If a lining goes through the wash with a staple in then you get rust marks and they’re very very tough to get out.

We had a note in our terms and conditions about using tape and staples in the marquees. Did it make a difference? Nope. Did we charge for the work of removing said tape and staples? Nope. It’s just one of those things.

Thanks for reading.

Spencer

DIY Marquees bulletin board

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

There’s various things to mention so this isn’t technically an advice article, sorry!

1. We’ve got a used 6m x 6m DIY Marquee for sale on eBay at the moment. It’s in reasonable condition and could help someone out.

2. The 9m wide modular marquees, walkway and new sizes of marquee advertised at The Showmans Show aren’t on the website yet, they’ll be put on in January when they’re in stock – with the exception of the 9m marquees that we’re taking pre-orders for to be ready in March.

3. Probably the biggest news/problem is we’ve been told this week that we can no longer get hold of the shade of lining material we use. We’ve sorted out a replacement that is slightly more expensive but long term could actually be better as it’s a shade that’s used more widely in the marquee industry. The two shades are not really compatable in the same marquee so if you’ve already got our linings we’re trying to make sure we don’t let you down –  we’re buying as many thousand metres of the material as we can to continue supplying you. But it will run out at some stage, at this time I would estimate in 4-6 months time.

If anyone knows they want linings for next season then you can reserve some in the existing colour without paying a deposit as long as they’re standard stock items, that way you know where you are.

Sorry if this is bad news, we’re doing our best to help in any way we can.

Thanks for reading.

Spencer.

The Showmans Show 2009

Monday, October 19th, 2009

We started setting up our stand at The Showmans Show today with a few bits left for tomorrow, obviously our stand looks good(!) but the show in general looks very impressive.

I’d heard that some exhibitors weren’t going to be allowed to attend due to being bad payers but as far as I can see all the major players are there and some marquees look very very impressive. When I ran our business we always stopped at the size you could put up without machinery so to see some of these huge structures being erected is fascinating.

Anyway, enough of that, what are we going to be offering you this year?

2m x 6m Walkway – as mentioned previously we’ve started offering a modular 2m wide walkway. The number of times we’re asked for it means it should prove popular and an essential for any expanding marquee hire business.

6m wide deluxe marquees – Initially only available as a 6m x 12m marquee even though we’re displaying it at the show as 6m x 8m (we don’t have endless space, you get the idea!). These marquees are 2.3m high at the eaves making them the same height as aluminium frame marquees and feel a little more spacious walking in. They will also have 650gsm PVC roofs and 500gsm side panels but they’re not finished yet so the 6×8 has the standard 500gsm roof & 380gsm side panels. Do I think it’s worth having this extra thick roof? Honestly? not really, the big appeal to me is the added height but some people out there base everything on the thickness of material rather than other factors so we have to offer something thicker.

Coloured linings – bit of a cheat as it’s not new, we’ve always made coloured linings but having a purple interior to our pagoda sounded quite eye-catching. Hopefully in a good way..

Starlight roof linings – We’ve started supplying these always popular black twinkling roof linings. Again, something different for you to see and offer your customers next year. They come in 6m x 2m sections so you can use them across our whole range of 6m wide marquees.

9m wide aluminium frame marquees – my God some work has gone in to these. And is still going on in fact, it’s a bit of a race against time over the next 24 hours but we should have some framework and covers for you to see.  The next step for any expanding marquee hire business is to go bigger, and that means using an aluminium/steel combination to go 9m wide. We’ve developed these to be compatible with others in the market so even if you’ve already got some this could be of interest.

As always thanks for reading, I hope to see you at the show – the forecast is mixed so have those waterproofs I mentioned a while ago handy just in case. Remember – Avenue E, stand 267. Half way up on the right or just two along from the HUGE black/silver marquee.

Marquee linings tip

Monday, January 26th, 2009

This is something we learnt over the years.

It’s very difficult keeping marquee linings clean, especially when you’re flat out and they’re going up and down every weekend. To start with we used a commercial cleaning company who turned round the linings within 2 days, the only problem with that is the linings came back crinkled, we’d often get comments from customers that they needed an iron -we even hired a steamer for one particular wedding as the wrinkled linings were so bad.

Most linings fit into a domestic washing machine -all of our DIY Marquees are designed that way intentionally. Pleated linings up to 9mx3m can fit but you need a commercial washing machine for 12m and 15m.

So here’s my recommendation -wash the marquee linings at home in your domestic washing machine but only do it just before putting your marquee up the next time it’s out. Don’t put the linings in a dryer, put them up damp:

  • The linings dry very quickly
  • The linings dry in place, so no creases
  • You avoid having to use dryers – our biggest cause of small tears and damage
  • Make sure your hands are clean, damp linings will pick up any dirt (we used to keep a pack of baby wipes in the van for this)

If your linings are really bad (if they’ve been stored damp for a long time for example) and have mould on then simple washing won’t get it out, it needs something more drastic. High-Spec Ltd offer a mould away spray that’s useful to keep in your van but only really good for small patches, if the area affected is large you have to soak the linings in bleach, just make sure you wash them thoroughly afterwards and don’t leave them soaking for too long as it damages the velcro etc.

I hope that’s helped some people out there, thanks for reading.

Spencer

Marquee Linings

Monday, October 13th, 2008

Some new satin linings have been making their way into the industry, I’m not keen and think people should be very wary before buying them. Here’s why:

 

We’ve been making marquee linings for 15-20 years -it’s how I originally got in to the marquee hire industry. We’re certainly nowhere near the biggest manufacturer but we do a good job and everything’s made by us in the UK. Basically, when it comes to marquee linings we like to think we know what we’re talking about.

 

For those who don’t know most marquee linings manufactured in the UK use an ivory polyester, although there’s seemingly 101 different shades of ivory an industry standard is slowly filtering through so they all match. Linings made in China use satin material and with the quantities made in China probably outnumber the polyester ones in the world.

 

But you’re not reading this for facts, you’re reading this for my opinion. And my opinion is satin marquee linings are crap. Shiny satin linings look cheap and just lack the class of their polyester counterparts.

 

Satin linings:

  • Are made from cheaper inferior material
  • Reflect the light (not a good thing appearance-wise)
  • Are made in the cheapest method possible, this generally means the walls are attached to the roofs and no finishing pelmet or swag is used.

 

If you do buy satin linings make make sure they satisfy BS 7837: 1996 for flammability, you should receive a certificate with any new marquee linings. A lot of marquees and linings made in China are intended for the US market, unfortunately their flammability test requirements are lower than British Standards.

If you take nothing else away from reading this blog take this:

Just because something states it’s flame rertardant doesn’t mean it satisfies british standards -always insist on a copy of the test report satisfying BS 7837: 1996

As always, thanks for reading

Spencer

Showmans Show

Monday, October 6th, 2008

Only 16 days to the showmans show!

We can be found on stand 235, Avenue E.  When you come out of the large entrance marquee turn right then turn left alongside the arena. We’re halfway down on the right.

I’ve no idea what our stand will look like, it’s only 2 weeks away but we’re so busy with orders I don’t think we can make anything special or unique. It”ll probably just be a 6×8 and one of our new pagodas with us standing in the middle eating sweets.
If you’re serious about setting up your own marquee business then come round to our stand first and I’ll point out each stand that’s a must see. I try to be honest and as unbiased as possible.

As I’ve said before the showmans show is a really good show. As someone who has a fair bit of experience (we used to exhibit at 30-40 shows a year throughout my childhood) I appreciate how well organised it is for both exhibitors and visitors. For us it’s just 2 days of sitting round chatting to people 🙂
Thanks for reading, hope to see you at the show.

Spencer