Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Keeping myself amused while working

There are pros and cons to making a whole lot of shades all alike.  The main advantage: less thinking.  The main disadvantage: boredom.
I had 7 shades to make, 4 of them the same size: just 14" wide.  Hey, tiny shades- sounds easy!- but when you think about it, compared to one 56" wide shade (4 x 14") it's 8 side hems vs 2 side hems; 12 rows of rings vs 6 rows of rings; 4 lift systems vs 1 lift system; 4 weight bars to sew in vs 1. 
These were so small that I was able to line up all four across the table sideways.  That way I could be sure the colored rows lined up from one shade to the next.
I hate how the lighting makes the fabric look awfully wrinkly. 

I have to keep my mind occupied during long stints of boring work.  For me, that means music.  The best music for repetitive work is music I know word for word, note for note.  I know I'm dating myself when I say my faves for sewing are Van Morrison; Lou Reed; the Dead; the Band.  Stevie Ray.   CSNY and U2.  I sing along and tell myself, I can do this for one more song.  Before I know it, I'm done, and I've gotten through a few favorite albums.
I've also been known to read books on my iPhone while I sew rings.  Yes, I do.  Here I'm reading "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea."  Somehow I missed Jules Verne in my reading career, and I'm really glad I caught up with him!

If I feel I need to be multi-tasking in a more productive way, I'll spend some time thinking my way through upcoming work orders, figuring my cuts, or doing preliminary thinking on estimates, keeping my calculator nearby.

After making all those shades, I forgot to take a picture of them, so I pulled out the leftover fabric and trim to show you.  They turned out great, and the decorator called to say so.  This is the second set of shades I've made with this mother of pearl button banding and it is pretty spectacular.


  1. I've seen and liked the button trim. You say you use it for banding does that mean vertically? If so did you calculate your pleats to fall between the buttons so the trim would fold nicely? Or wasn't that necessary?

    1. Frances- I've used this trim to band the bottom of Roman shades, horizontally. I haven't used it for a pleated valance, but if you did, yes, you'd have to work out placement so the buttons don't fall at a fold.