Buckeye Hits Bullseye with PPE Realignment

Robert Zoch
April 28, 2020

Based in Carroll, Ohio, Carriage House Printery is a family-owned business providing on-demand fabric printing to a variety of fabrics including cottons, polyester, rayon, and several in-demand blends. To print a wide range of designs on a wide range of materials, in any quantity necessary, they installed their first Kornit Allegro system for digital direct-to-fabric decoration in early 2018, and a second in late 2019. The business also uses cut-and-sew technologies in conjunction with their product offerings.

Like many small businesses in the United States, Carriage House experienced a sudden, devastating drop in orders with the emergence of COVID-19, and business failure became a very real concern. Many of their direct customers were similarly affected, as well, and owner Michael Frankhauser knew he had to take action.

In this new environment, there emerged a clear demand for personal protection equipment (PPE) in the form of facial masks—masks which demanded the types of fabrics Carriage House was accustomed to printing. Reaching out to each of his private business customers, Frankhauser offered them samples of masks they could produce for end consumers, and their interest was spurred. Shifting existing operations for the purpose of producing masks required a considerable effort, but Carriage House was able to do so with the support of Kornit’s technical support personnel.

Within a few weeks, Carriage House was shipping more than 40,000 masks per week, and Frankhauser anticipates that number may reach 100,000 before the current situation has abated. In addition to their traditional customer base, they have found a buyer in the Ohio state government, as well.

“We’ve never been this busy,” he says about life at Carriage House today. “We’re not only helping our business stay afloat, but we’re creating opportunity for our customers to do so, as well.”

Having seen his business’s capabilities for adjusting to meet demand under even the most volatile market circumstances, Frankhauser recently signaled their confidence with the acquisition of a Gerber Z1 cutter.