The Waterfall Sample Card Classic waterfall style sample cards and how they can work for you

(Far left, Waterfall Sample Card)

The Waterfall Sample Card: Reasons to use Waterfall Style Sampling

The Waterfall Sample Card, Swatch cards, memos; the variety of sampling tools and terminology can be overwhelming when you are starting the sampling process. Each sampling tool will give your customer a different experience with the fabric you are showcasing. To help you through this process, we want to focus on the various sample products we produce. Today we want to familiarize you with the waterfall sample card and illuminate how they can work for you.

Waterfall sample cards are cards on which the fabric has been layered, or waterfalled, with just a partial area of the sample, usually the top, glued down. The remaining fabric then overlaps the next sample, hanging freely from the sample card. This overlapping is reminiscent of shingling, which is why waterfall samples are also called shingles.

The waterfall sample card costs no more than one with glued-down, island style swatches of the same size. But the ability to place more large samples on one page, and the total surface area of the material that can be shown is a great asset. Here are the top reasons to choose waterfall sample cards for your next sample card.


  1. Appearance
A waterfall sample card can show the full range of color options for your product at a single glance. It can demonstrate the changeable character of your print, or lace, vinyl, etc., as it is seen in one color vs another. You can show multiple styles in the same range of colors, in side-by side waterfalls, Whatever your product, the display of a large spectrum of color in perfect alignment gives your samples a professional and beautiful appearance.

  1. Texture
Your customers want to touch the product. While they can look at fabric online, or see an excellent printed representation in your advertising, customers want to see and feel the material, and confidently choose what will work best for their purposes. Waterfall sample cards let them feel the fabric on both the front and back, to determine the thickness, durability, and texture. They also allow you to show any coating or backing, and possibly the reversibility, of the fabric. That little bit of loose fabric on your waterfall sample cards gives you a big one-up, as opposed to other kinds of cards..

  1. Quantity
Waterfall sample cards vastly expand your possibilities as far as how many samples can fit in a manageable space. The sample card itself can be a bi-fold, or even a tri-fold, with samples possibly extending onto the back panels. The number of SKU’s that can be shown vertically is limited to around 20-25 on a standard 11” long page. But two or three narrower columns can be mounted side-by-side on a single panel, and the card can also be oversized. So if you have a lot of samples and want to showcase them in a compact presentation, waterfall cards are a cost-effective as well as attractive option.

       4. Larger swatches

When a customer wants to feel and manipulate the fabric sample they need larger samples. Waterfall sample cards work well to demonstrate the “hand” of the fabric. They also let you show more of a pattern or stripe, and let the customer judge the sheerness or density of fabrics. Waterfall swatching has long been a favorite of the drapery industry for these reasons.

  Who should use waterfall sample cards? So you may be thinking, all of this sounds great, but are waterfall sample cards for me? Here are some questions to ask yourself about your product to see if waterfall sample cards are the right option.


  1. Do you want to showcase multiple fabrics, styles or colors in one place for comparison?


  1. Do you need to showcase 2 or more fabrics at the same time?
  1. Is the fabric best experienced when it can be handled?

  Answering yes to any of these is a good indicator that fabric waterfall sample cards are right for you. If you aren’t sure, contact us! We can help you decide what will work best for your product, and show you samples of what we can do. With over 100 years of textile sampling experience, we know samples!

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