What is Custom Experiential Fabrication: From Rendering to Reality

TentCraft /// 05/24/2022
example of custom experiential manufacturing for Kia reveal

3 Examples of Custom Experiential Fabrication

Custom experiential fabrication involves the building and manufacturing of physical assets that support brand activations, mobile tours, events and other branded experiences. Assets might range from custom tents and pop up exhibits to portable retail structures or custom branded environments.

In terms of experiential marketing fabricators, there are companies of all sizes. Sparks is an example of one of the larger brand experience agencies with capabilities that range from strategy and creative to execution and measurement. Their pop-up shop for Optimum Nutrition is a great example of custom experiential fabrication.

Not every agency has experiential manufacturing capabilities so outside partners are often used. That’s where we fit. We’re a hybrid—in between agency & manufacturer. For our agency clients, we function as a behind-the-scenes partner who can make the large and small ingredients that bring an event or pop-up experience to life.

Events and brand experiences are about capturing attention and driving engagement so we’re often asked to help with ideas and concept renderings to help illustrate what’s possible.

Here are three experiential project renderings that were recently brought to life.

#1 Experiential Retail Structures: Nike Pop-Up Shoebox

Sports Endeavors is the largest soccer, lacrosse, and rugby retailer in the world. Their leading brand, Soccer.com, is an official Nike partner and key sponsor of major youth soccer tournaments across the U.S.

With pop-up retail experiences headlining many of these events, the team at Soccer.com wanted to create something that would capture a lot of attention. The goal was to create a giant, portable Nike shoebox to help generate retail sales at tournaments. Additionally, the Sports Endeavors team wanted a structure that could be broken down into smaller structures for different events.

Related: University Uses Shoebox Tent to Create VIP Experience

Nike shoebox experiential fabrication

Coming up with the infrastructure, with versatility and size being two of the most important project requirements, we recommended event truss for the frame. Truss is not only lightweight and easy to put together, it's also available in various lengths, making it easier to design a 2-in-1 event structure.

To create the shoebox look, we printed (dye-sublimation) on a power-stretch material since it creates a fitted, wrinkle-free surface. The soft goods would require 8 separate panels to be printed and then sewn together.

experiential manufacturing giant Nike shoebox panel

experiential retail structures Nike shoebox

The Result: 2-in-1 Event Structure

And here are examples of the final 2-in-1 event structure. Both designs can be set up in less than hour.

Nike shoebox experiential fabrication example

Nike shoebox experiential fabrication example

example of event truss structure for Soccer.com

#2 Experiential Fabrication for New Vehicle Launch

Experiential marketing is commonplace within the auto industry. We've manufactured custom assets for ride and drive events, vehicle backdrops and other auto activations.

Recently, we had the opportunity to produce a 20x40 branded structure for the Kia Seltos reveal at the LA Auto Show . The client provided the layout but needed help solidifying the visuals. Our design team created a detailed rendering to ensure all parties were on the same page. Once everything was approved, we moved everything to production. Here's a great example of taking an experiential concept from rendering to reality.

Kia truss structure for vehicle reveal

custom experiential fabrication for auto brands

experiential rendering for new vehicle launch

20x40 truss structure for Kia Seltos reveal at 2019 LA Auto show

custom event fabrication for automotive brands

experiential marketing fabricators - Kia Seltos Reveal

experiential marketing fabricators - Kia Seltos Reveal

#3 Experiential Fabrication for Product Sampling

Capturing the attention of busy consumers at Grand Central Station is no easy feat. That’s why the team at WhistlePig opted for a unique look to drive product sampling. Requirements were: 1) easy to transport 2) lightweight 3) quick to setup and 4) ample space for branding.

After working through a few concept renderings, the team decided on a custom, snap-together aluminum frame system with slip-over graphics. The entire display goes up in 15-20 minutes.

custom asset fabrication for experiential marketing


From full service to specialty—there are a handful of experiential marketing fabricators out there who can bring your event and sponsorship ideas to life. Napkin-sketches, custom printing projects, and off-the-wall activation ideas are what drives the experiential marketing world forward.

Related Content: 2020 Inspiration Guide: Brand Activations, Events and Programs

About TentCraft

We’re more than just custom pop up tents — TentCraft is a premium fabricator of all things experiential marketing and outdoor advertising. If it combines metal, fabric and print our team of skilled craftsmen can transform any napkin sketch or wild idea into a fully realized project. Serving the biggest brands on the planet as well as your local High School, if you want the perfect blend of quality and American craftsmanship, we’ve got you covered.