Saturday, April 10, 2010

Empire valance variation

Here is an Empire valance with extended gathered horns.  
This particular order was a challenge to fabricate mainly because of the need to reduce bulk at so many stages along the way.

As you can see in the second picture, the face fabric is a heavy woven upholstery fabric.  You can also see the very heavy lip cord that was sewn into the bottom.
The valance is also interlined, which adds a lot of bulk to an already bulky face fabric and a medium weight lining. 
All the seams had to be trimmed and layered to reduce bulk.

 The third photo shows the swag section laid out on the lining on the bias.  Since the face fabric is stiff and awkward pleated up into a swag, the lining and interlining are bias cut to give the swags a little drapeability.
For valances composed of many pieced sections, lining and interlining are railroaded if possible to reduce bulk at the seams.  Because we wanted to cut the swags on the bias, we could not railroad the linings.  However, with this style of valance, railroading wasn't an option anyhow, as you can see in the bottom photo.  Once the pieces are joined it forms a big arc. 
The bottom photo also shows how the interlining has been trimmed away from the board line of the swag pleats to reduce the bulk when it's pleated up.  Both interlining and lining have been cut from the board line on the slender cascades, since the layers all had to pleat up into 3" of space.  The flat "picture area" of the swag has been padded to lift it up to the pleat level. 


  1. Even with all of the layer and difficult fabric that you were working with, they turned out beautiful!

  2. Thanks!
    I wish I'd dressed them a little better for the photo.....

  3. I almost always cut my swags on the bias but have never cut my empire swags on the bias. learn something new everyday ! Thank you.