In Monday’s post, I promised that I would cover a bit of the history of EnMart’s parent company, Ensign Emblem, and sublimation some time this week. As a general rule, EnMart and Ensign tend to stand as pretty separate entities. One, of course, owns the other, but we deal with different markets and some different products and so most of the time there isn’t much reason to mention one company when speaking about the other. When it comes to sublimation, however, the history of Ensign Emblem directly impacts EnMart. The advice that EnMart dispenses on a daily basis, and the sublimation products we sell are strongly influenced by what Ensign Emblem has learned about sublimation over the years. Given that, a little explanation of how we got to this place is probably in order.
The history of Ensign Emblem the company begins in 1974 when the company was founded. The history of Ensign Emblem and sublimation begins in the early 90’s. Ensign started sublimating back when sublimation was still done with thermal ribbons. Apparently we used Seiko printers and created a lot of custom sublimated emblems using this method.
The next step in the story comes when we ventured into inkjet sublimation. Ensign was the first company to bring inkjet sublimation to industrial laundries with our Merlin system. Ensign also played a part in inspiring a more durable sublimation ink. As with anything else created for industrial laundries, the sublimation ink had to hold up under intense conditions. An industrial wash and dry is not a gentle process, and eventually, a sublimation ink was developed that could withstand that process.
After the Merlin program was developed, Ensign began installing the systems in industrial laundries across the country. The Merlin system also required the development of special tools, like registration boards, and software that was designed specifically for the commercial uniform rental and laundry industry. Ensign’s technicians create each Merlin system from the ground up and have years of experience in installing the systems and working with the sublimation process.
When EnMart was created, sublimation was not initially part of the company, which then focused solely on embroidery supplies. As time went on, however, we realized that we had a wealth of experience, knowledge and information about sublimation, and it only made sense to begin offering the benefit of what we knew to our EnMart customers. Because of our experiences with the Merlin systems, we knew about paper and sublimation inks and printers, and we were confident in recommending what we felt were the best supplies and components because we’d tested those supplies and components for use with the Merlin system.
Our long history with sublimation means that when you purchase your inks, papers or printers from EnMart you’re purchasing from someone who has experience with these products and who knows what works and what doesn’t work. Our technicians are happy to assist should you have questions or problems, and we’re also happy to offer assistance and advice if you’re not sure what sort of system you need. Ensign Emblem’s participation in the evolution of sublimation has worked to make EnMart a terrific resource when it comes to sublimation printing.