Design35ny: Party Decor and More With UV Print Power

Catching up with Tiffany Verwayne, founder of the design business.

Tiffany Verwayne Design 35ny E J08119 e1715202583947
Design35ny Founder Tiffany Verwayne

Tiffany Verwayne, founder of Design35ny in Westbury, New York, has always known that she wanted to build — she just needed to figure out how to do it. Verwayne studied at a high school for the arts, developing her design skills while earning a fine arts degree. After graduation, she worked in construction, and on crafts at home with her kids. Soon, she began looking for tools to take her designs beyond what craft machines could accomplish.

Bolstered by her experience and passion for design, in 2019 Verwayne launched her business, intending to offer custom party bags and paper goods. “Actually, I have yet to do any jobs like that,” she laughs. “From the beginning, most of my clients were requesting small acrylic details, so that’s where I started.”

We talked with Verwayne about how her company’s product line evolved, the tools she found to increase production, and how her designs became “must haves” for events in New York City and beyond.

How did you develop Design35ny?

When I started my company, I got requests for small, custom acrylic products, which is not what I was anticipating. Still, it was a place to start.

I went on social media to find out what other creators were making and noticed some were using craft laser cutters. They looked like great tools, so I bought one and started making cake toppers and keepsakes for birthday parties.

To expand my reach, I participated in workshops to meet people in the event planning industry. I made lots of connections at those workshops and on Instagram. My business took off from there.

At what point did you decide to incorporate UV printing?

I started seeing people online who were printing directly on acrylics. My research led me to Roland DG’s benchtop UV printers. I requested information online and found a dealer.

Then I visited the dealer to try out the machine. I bought a Roland DG VersaUV LEF2-200 20” benchtop UV printer in 2020. It’s the perfect size for me. I always say, start off with the biggest size machine you can afford. Again, at the time, not many people locally were doing what I was doing.

Despite having zero knowledge about any part of this industry at that time, I thought, “Let’s see what I can do.” I have always had a passion and vision for what I want to build. It’s really the only thing I can imagine myself doing.

I knew how to use my UV printer after the first day, but it took me about a year to fully understand it and maximize its potential. In addition to being able to print almost any color, the specialty inks allow me to add special effects and unique textures to my designs.

Design35ny XL Space Jam Menu

How do you use your UV printer to help you with product creation?

My UV printer is my money maker — it has helped me take my ideas to the next level. In addition to being able to print directly on acrylic and other substrates, having the white and gloss ink capability helps my designs stand out from the crowd. The industry is oversaturated, so you need to find a way to differentiate your products.

I pay a lot of attention to color matching, and the UV printer has a wide color gamut that enables me to match my clients’ colors accurately.

This is especially important for my corporate clients, where matching specific brand colors is essential. They need the perfect red or perfect pink. These finer details are what set me apart and allow me to not just meet but exceed my clients’ expectations.

Tell us about your products today.

I always say I offer custom luxury stationery. Of course, I do a lot more than that. My product categories include gifting, cake embellishment, canvas, custom signage, and acrylic details, in addition to stationery. In general, I create a lot of table and bar decor, along with menus, drink stirrers, branding elements, and backdrop signs.

How much of your work is custom?

Let me put it this way: 0% of my work is not custom. I’ve tried selling various products through the website and have probably had four orders come through that way. Everyone wants something custom from me. It’s a gift and a curse.

How is your facility set up?

My office is a chic design studio that I also use to meet with clients. It’s in a 1,000-square-foot space, and on one side I have my UV printer set up, along with a laser printer, a wide-format printer, and a CNC machine.

Please tell us about the events and occasions you design for.

Currently, I do a lot of social events, such as birthday parties, baby showers, bridal showers, and graduations. I’m starting to get into weddings as well. In addition, various brands reach out to me for custom signage, and I work with event planners for events with larger companies like Nike. I’ve also shipped my products throughout the United States.

How does your order process work?

Clients either email me directly or fill out the inquiry form on the website. I ask for at least three weeks’ notice. I also request that the client show me a mood board or some inspirational photos to give me an idea of what they are looking for. When I’m doing an event, I always ask clients to send me pictures of the furniture and lighting in the room so I can work with an understanding of the environment.

From there, I start the design process. I typically offer my clients one or two designs or mockups to start with. I’m usually able to show them what they’re looking for in one try.

I do love that every job is different. Recently, one of my clients had a baby shower with the theme “April showers bring May flowers.” My challenge was to incorporate rain somehow into my design. I developed the concept of adding subtle raindrops on the acrylic material using the UV printer’s gloss ink. The clients were thrilled.

Are there any trends you are seeing these days?

I’m getting a lot of requests for drink stirrers and bar menus with people’s pictures in the menu. Bar menus in general are quite popular, even for corporate events.

Why do you think your clients choose Design35ny?

I think clients choose my company because I’m willing to go the extra mile to make sure their visions are executed. I’ll print five or six swatches to make sure I get the color correct. They appreciate the effort. When you are planning a special event, every detail needs to be perfect.

What lies ahead for your business?

I want to continue providing unique event decor and custom luxury stationery pieces. In addition, I’d like to begin making custom home goods. I think it would be great to create permanent objects that people can have in their homes.

Design35ny XL Kulture Party

Ginny Mumm Head Shot bw

Ginny Mumm

Roland DGA

Ginny Mumm is a freelance consultant for digital inkjet printer/cutter provider Roland DGA.

View all articles by Ginny Mumm   Visit Website

Related Articles

Back to top button