Dematerializing Samples

Tricycle expands its alternative sampling program with Tryk.

In 2002 the Chattanooga-based sustainable-design-services company Tricycle launched an alternative sampling option for the interiors industry; manufacturers outsource the process to the company, which produces and delivers extremely realistic paper samples—called SIMs—to specifiers instead of actual carpet slabs. The idea quickly took off and has become widely implemented (and widely imitated) in the industry. Tricycle estimates that in four years its service has saved about 26,000 gallons of oil and kept more than 155,000 pounds of waste out of landfills.

At this year’s NeoCon World’s Trade Fair, Tricycle launched a significant expansion of the program, called Tryk. Previously the company could only cre­ate samples of tufted carpet, but Tryk works with woven carpet as well as wall-coverings and fabrics. It also allows for different scales and larger sizes—and the image quality is improved. “We continue to move toward a more photorealistic image,” says Michael Hendrix, Tricycle’s creative director and chief brand officer. “If you could see an image from three years ago, the tufts looked flatter. We’ve been able to improve the perception of volume in the overall look.”

The company is also launching a new Web platform, which will be fully functional by January. “It’s more robust,” Hendrix says. “It’s giving more features to the user, and it’s actually better integrated with the business practices of manufac­turers.” The end result is an even more efficient, easy-to-use, and realistic tool for designers to sample materials—without wasting them.


Tryk samples are ink-jet-printed on Epson archival paper for a long-lasting high-quality image. (Recycled paper is also available by request.)

The paper is recyclable; samples are available at several scales and sizes. Tricycle fulfills most Web orders in less than 24 hours.

An alternative sampling option for tufted and woven carpets, wall-coverings, and fabrics

3001 Broad St.
Chattanooga, TN 37408
(800) 808-4809

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