A custom printed table cover seems simple enough, but there are actually a lot of things to consider such as table sizes, open-back versus closed-back, different types of printing methods and finally how the table cover actually fits your table.
By the end of this article, you will have a good understanding of the options available and will be ready to shop for the printed table cover that will work the best for your next trade show or event.
The first thing to consider when selecting a table cover is the size of your table. The most common table sizes are the standard 6ft and 8ft tables. Some other sizes include 4ft demo tables and round bar height tables.
Open-Back -vs- Closed Back
The next decision to make is choosing between an open-back or closed-back cover. Essentially the open back is three-sided where the fabric goes down the table to the floor on the front and sides leaving the back open. This option is great if you’re planning on sitting behind the table and want easy access underneath the table for passing out catalogs, promotional products, etc. The closed-back option goes down the table to the floor on all four sides. This is a great option for a table that is visible from all sides since it will look the same all the way around.
Type of Printing
Next, let’s talk about the different printing options used for table covers. Understanding the differences will explain the difference in price and functionality.
The first one is called dye sublimation. This is just a fancy term that means it’s printed digitally in full color. The advantages to dye sublimation is that you can print anything you want on the material. It’s like an artist with a blank canvas, you can create anything you want in full color.
The second method is a heat press process. With this option, you typically start with a stock color fabric blank and your logo gets added on the front of the table cover using a vinyl material that is applied to the fabric using heat and pressure. In addition to the fabric blanks being specific stock colors, your logo will also need to be a stock color. It is not a full color process like dye sublimation. This is something to be aware of if you need your logo to be a specific color.
The 3rd main printing method used for table covers is screen printing. This uses a stock fabric color as well and a screen is created to make a logo imprint. It can be a 1, 2, 3 or even a 4-color imprint. This is a great option for companies looking to produce a lot of table covers while keeping costs under control.
Printed Table Cover Style
Last but not least, is choosing the type of table cover. Each have their own unique style and look.
Drape Table Throws
The Drape style is probably the most common (also commonly referred to as table throws, which loosely drape over the table). These have less finishing involved than a fitted or stretch table cover and so these can be printed on one big piece of material making them more affordable. These are available in full color or 1 or 2 color.
Fitted Table Covers
Fitted Table Covers (which nicely conform to the table size). This option is somewhere inbetween the drape and stretch.
Stretch Table Covers
Stretch Table Covers (also commonly called 'Spandex'), which look nice and snug and give it that stretch look. You can even add a table runner which is a separate fabric banner that can be printed and runs down the top and front of the table to provide another layer of branding.
As you can see, there are a lot of options to consider when deciding on the perfect printed table cover, but I hope this article has helped shed some light on what options are available.