Monday, February 13, 2012

That fab fabric, and what we made from it:

For a young woman's bedroom- 4 gorgeous shades from this embroidered linen/cotton blend, for a sort of high-end, nouveau-hippie look.

The embroidery is set off with purple fabric banding on three sides of the shades, with ribbon and glass bead trim dangling from the bottom to catch the light.

These shades were lined with a modified French blackout layering method.  Next to the face fabric is a layer of lightweight ivory lining; behind that is black Apollo; and plain lightweight white on the back.
To prepare the lining, the edges are pressed in 3/4" and the pockets marked and stitched.
The ivory lining and the Apollo are centered on the shade; then the face fabric is folded over just once and pressed.  The prepared lining is laid over it all, the pockets pressed toward the top and carefully lined up to the table grid, then hand-sewn at the sides. 

The weight bar is sewn into a pocket behind the purple band.  On the front the weight bar pocket is topstitched along the edge of the purple.

On the back, the bottom of the weight bar pocket is sewn, before the topstitching is done, only in the back hem.  The ladder shroud is tucked into the back hem even though the first row of rings is 4" up- so the ladder tape finishes neatly.

Here are my favorite hand-sewing threads: the white is an upholstery thread, but I love hand-sewing with it because it doesn't twist; and the ivory is button & carpet thread which is nearly indestructible.  When I need an exact color match I prefer quilting thread, but in this case had to settle for doubled strands of all-purpose thread.

Of the 4 shades, I chose this one to photograph in order to illustrate the compromises that sometimes must be made even with high-end fabrics, especially when embroidery is involved.  The pattern is not consistent, neither vertically nor laterally, through the roll of fabric.
On this shade, the center of the motif is exactly in the center of the shade, but if you look closely, at the top, the pattern is not symmetrical laterally.  If it had been cut with the sides in mind, the center of the motif would not have been in the center of the shade.  
As you look toward the bottom of the shade you can see that the pattern evens out somewhat.
Also, the pattern drops just a smidgen on the right side of the roll.
The most important centering criterion was the center of the motif, and that set the stage for all the variations.  

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