Thursday, October 16, 2014

Dog Ears or No Dog Ears??

I never thought this question needed asking!!  Who would ever want dog eared pillows??  Apparently, things have changed in the world on this issue.

If you aren't familiar with the difference, here you go.  I didn't have my own picture, so I borrowed this one from Newton Custom Interiors.

You can find the picture at this website.

I have recently begun taking on clients for pay and have made quite a few pillows of late.  I have always made the dog ear adjustment.  Basically you cut off 1/2" at each corner tapering to the middle of each side. You can Google dog ear adjustment and find plenty of tutorials.

I bring this up, because I had to redo 4 pillows last week for a customer who actually wanted the dog ears!  I was frustrated.  One, because I was taught to make the adjustment, so not doing it goes against every fiber of my being.  Two, people will see my work and think I totally lack experience to make custom pillows or question my ability as a seamstress.  Because I have actually been hired by a local fabric store to make these for their customers, I have to make them the way they want.  And from what they tell me, everyone wants the dog ears.  Really??  My fear is I will have to redo the pillows for those who don't want the dog ears.

I would be really upset if I were paying the going rate for custom pillows, get them home and realize they have dog ears.  I seriously would return them, custom or not.  All my sewing friends say the same thing.  All of my favorite designers all make the adjustment.

Are we crazy?  Are we behind the times?  What's up with that?

Let me know what you think.

Thanks for stopping by my little part of the world.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Making a repair on a torn slipcover.

Has this ever happened to you??  This is a nasty tear in a stool slipcover and right at the corner.  Now, I'll admit, it could be much worse.  At least it's in the seam.  This had been repaired twice before it got to me.  Obviously, it didn't work.  I hated to see my client throw this out, so I gave it a shot.  And I'm going to share with you how I repaired it.  Hopefully, this will be the last time.

Here it is from another angle.  Nasty!!

 First I placed it on the corner of my sewing/pressing table.

Then pressed it.

I trimmed off all the stray threads.  I had to get them out of my way to move onto the next step.

Cut a piece of lightweight fusible stabilizer.  I keep all my remnants so I had a piece of Pellon SF 101.

 Now lay that over the seam (wrong side) and fuse in place.  It's hard to see, but it's there.
Turn to right side and press again.

Because I had a top seam where the sides meet the top, I had to unpick that just slightly.

Now you can fold the seam back to its original position and stitch in place.  I chose to use a 3/8" seam allowance just to be sure it would hold.  I ran one straight stitch first then turned to check I had enclosed the tear.  Then I went back and made a triple stitch to hold it.  The picture only shows my first stitch line.

And the right side.  No sign of tear!

Next, I closed that top seam again.  It is a bit crooked right where the repaired seam is, but there wasn't enough fabric to make it straight across.  No one will ever notice.

And now this slipcover will hopefully have another few good years.  Unless of course, this happens to the other seams.

Hope this helps someone else.  Incidentally, I am no expert in making these types of repairs.  If you know of or have a better way, please share!

Thanks for stopping by.

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Triangle Valances

These are not the best pictures.  This room is being renovated, and the lighting has not been completed. There were several windows, but it still just wasn't enough lighting.

I found an old Window Treatments book when cleaning out a drawer, and the instructions for this valance were in the book.  My client loved them and wanted them in this rental unit.

Here is another view.

These will be tacked on the sides of the casing to give them a more tailored look.  I had velcro but it just wasn't working.  We'll go back and tack it.

This is the little kitchen from the living space.

Since these went into a rental unit, cost was an issue.  Otherwise, I would absolutely recommend using a stabilizer of some sort when working with linen or any light weight fabric.  When stitching the triangles, you'll be stitching on the bias.  And since these are lined, it was a double whammy.  The fabric will stretch if not careful in your stitching.  The stabilizer would nip that problem.  You can see in the second pic, that left triangle is a bit off.  This was a linen from Hobby Lobby, and it didn't behave well at all.

I'm pretty certain I said a number of ugly words while making these.  There are also panels that will go along french doors in the living area.  Those haven't been hung yet, but I'll get pics of those when we do.  I also hope to have pics of the finished room.  The view is fantastic from this room too.

To determine the width of your triangles, first determine how many you want.  We went with 4.  Measure the finished width and divide by the number of triangles.  In our case, these windows were 44" wide casing to casing, and I divided by 4.  So I spaced the points 11" apart.  You will also want to add width if you choose a utility rod that curves into the wall.  I didn't do that, and we were a bit short.  But, we originally were going to use cafe rods, so I didn't need the extra width.

Feel free to ask questions.  These weren't difficult.  I totally recommend using a template.  It was a life saver!!

Happy Wednesday!