A picture is worth a thousand words, and so is a great banner. Whether you’re advertising sponsors, promoting an event or giving a shoutout to your local team, banners are a great tool for getting the word out.
There are two banner materials you’ll see most often: mesh and vinyl. While both have benefits, it’s important to choose the right one for your project. We recommend considering where the banner will be hung, how it will be secured and how long it will be there.
Vinyl and Mesh: What’s the Difference?
First, let’s look at the difference between these two materials. While they may look similar, vinyl and mesh are made of different fibers. The biggest difference between the two, however, is in how the fibers are bound together.
The type of vinyl used for banners, called scrim vinyl, is made by adding a thin piece of mesh between two vinyl layers. The resulting material is smooth, durable and lightweight. Holes can be cut in the vinyl to let wind pass through when the banner is placed outside.
Mesh, on the other hand, is a polyester material made of crisscrossed fibers, creating a pattern of tiny holes. These holes allow air to pass through easily, making the fabric more resistant to the wind.
Where Will It Be Used?
Your banner looks great right off the printer, but how will it look from 100 feet away? To get a great finished product, it’s important to think about where your banner will be hung. Both mesh and vinyl can be used indoors and outdoors, but it’s important to consider how far the banner will be from the viewer.
While the tiny holes in mesh material make it wind-resistant, they also make the surface less smooth for printing. In fact, the printed image will appear slightly pixelated. If the banner is being placed up high or far from the eye of the viewer, the image will look perfect. For example, consider a banner in a large stadium.
Large, clear text and images are easiest to see from far away.
If your banner will be viewed up close, on the other hand, it’s best to stick with vinyl. This material’s smooth printing surface ensures that your design will look clean and precise no matter where you are standing. A banner that will be viewed up-close also allows you to use smaller, more complex text and images.
How Will It Be Secured?
Next, consider how your banner will be hung and how secure the placement needs to be. There are two popular methods for keeping a banner in place: grommets and finished edges. Most banners you see are secured using grommets.
When you secure a banner with grommets, metal rings are secured on each side of the material. Next, you use zip ties to hang it in place, typically in the four corners of the banner. If it will be exposed to a lot of wind, you might use additional zip ties to secure it all the way around.
The second method, finished edges, utilizes either sewing or a special adhesive tape to fold the edges of the banner over itself. This method achieves stronger edges and can be used for both mesh banners and for larger vinyl ones.
How Long Will It Be There?
Finally, it’s important to consider the length of use when choosing between banner materials. If you are hanging up your design in an outdoor sports complex, for instance, it will likely be there for a while. In that case, you will want a more permanent fixture, such as a mesh banner with grommets all the way around.
If the banner is designed for a booth at a conference, it will need to be more portable than permanent. In this case, vinyl is the better choice because it is lightweight and can be rolled into tubes for easy transportation.
Making the Right Choice
Whichever of the two banner materials you choose, it’s most important to choose the right service provider to work on the project. Target Print and Mail’s expert team is available to guide you through the selection process from start to finish. We can help you choose the right design and materials for your banner to ensure you get the most out of your investment.
Ready to get started? Call 850-671-6600 today or click here to get a quote.