How to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

Since today is Earth Day, I thought it would be good to share some ideas on how to be more energy efficient. There are many things you can do to help make your home more energy efficient. Including our favorite, use interlined draperies in your home to keep the cold and heat out! Read on for more ideas that will help you save money in both the winter and summer months:

Get rid of energy vampires: cell phone chargers, electric toothbrushes, and other appliances still consume electricity even if they are not in use or turned off. By plugging them in just when they need to be used, you can save on average 6-8% of electricity, which accounts for an overall amount of $7 billion nationwide.

Replace Incandescent Bulbs: in 2014, manufacturers stopped producing 60-watt and 40-watt incandescent light bulbs (100-watt and 75-watt bulbs were already phased out). But we’re not doomed to live in the dark. Halogen bulbs, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs offer longer lasting light and are more energy-efficient than your old incandescent bulbs. Since the average home uses 40 bulbs, switching over to greener bulbs is a great way to save on your electrical bill.

Reverse your ceiling fan in winter: ceiling fans are more energy efficient than air conditioners, so if you can make the switch, do so. Secondly, ceiling fans can help keep your home warmer in the winter by simple reversing the fan’s direction to spin clockwise. In doing so, you’ll push the hot air downwards so that any heating that rises will be evenly distributed throughout your home.

Add Insulation to Your Attic: adding insulation to your attic can help seal air leaks and improve your home’s heating and cooling costs. The amount of insulation needed to cover your attic depends on your home’s size and the climate in your region, but you will recoup your money in a couple of years.

Wash your clothes with warm or cold water: 90% of the electricity consumed by your washer is used to heat up water. The next time you put a load in, make sure that you use soap that can be used with cold or warm water and adjust the settings.

Switch to low flow showers heads: the average shower head uses 5 gallons of water per minute, but changing them with low flow options you can reduce your consumption to 2.5 gallons per minute or less.

Buy Energy Star Products: Energy Star products, such as refrigerators, televisions, stoves, washers and air conditioners, meet energy-efficient specifications set by the EPA. Energy Star-qualified appliances use 10-50% less energy than standard appliances and help reduce emissions of greenhouse gases. If you plan to replace an appliance soon, consider getting an Energy Star-certified product.

Window treatments & rugs insulate your home: window treatments and rugs can be strategically used to maintain your home’s temperature. In the winter draw your drapes or shades at night to block out the cold air and keep the warmth in. Interlining your window coverings can add added insulation properties. Contact us for more information on this.


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Drapery Seams Happen

Designer Drape in Schumacher Amboise Linen Zinc, pattern matched
Designer Drape in Schumacher Amboise Linen Zinc, pattern matched

 

 

 

 

Seams happen.

But that’s ok, we can deal with seams beautifully and make it so you don’t even know they’re there and still create beautiful custom drapes.

 

 

Most of our fabrics start out at 54″. Then once you start sewing the pleats and side hems, the solid colored fabric will measure 26″ wide at the top of the drape when completed. This is 1 “width” of fabric. This is fine if your custom drapes are going to be decorative, meaning that they will be stationary and you don’t plan on opening and closing them. But what if you have a wide window or your need to  close your drapes? Then we start to sew together “widths” of fabric to meet your specifications.  If you need a drape that is 80″ wide, you would order a 3 width drape. And our seamstresses are so talented, that they will hide the seams in the back of the pleats so that you don’t see them. This goes for patterns and striped fabrics too. Check out our measuring guide for more information.

How to cut fabric when matching a pattern
How to cut fabric when matching a pattern

Seams for Roman shades will be a little more obvious, but we have a solution for that too. We order enough fabric so that we can match up the pattern on all of your Roman shades. Does everyone do that? Not really, which is why you should do your homework before purchasing custom window treatments.

Contemporary Cotton Gate Black/White, Flat Roman Shade
Contemporary Cotton Gate Black/White, Flat Roman Shade
Flat Roman SHade, Stripes are pattern matched
Flat Roman Shade, stripes are pattern matched

 

Seams can’t really be avoided but they can look good. Your custom made drapes should have details like bottom weights, drapery pins, double bottom hems and headers and premium linings.

Striped Silk Veranda 3, French pleat, Stainless Steel Hardware
Striped Silk Veranda 3, French Pleat, Stainless Steel Hardware

The DrapeStyle way of making custom drapery takes a little more time and costs a little more money but we think it’s worth it. All of our products are made from the highest quality materials right here in the USA. For more information or questions, please contact us.

Striped Silk Veranda 3, Inverted Pleat, Classic Iron Hardware

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What is Drapery Stack Back?

Dupioni Silk Drapes
Dupioni Silk Drapes in French Blue

Stack Back is a term most designers know and use when I am helping them with a window project. But it is important for our retail customers to know about this term as well.

Stack Back is essentially the amount of space that a drape will take up when it is pushed opened. To make it easy, we usually calculate Stack Back as 25% of the width of the drape for French, Flat Panels and Parisian pleated drapes. For Inverted and Cartridge pleated drapes, figure 28%.

Solid Linen Drapes in Leather, French Pleat

This can be important if you are limited on wall space on the sides of your window or if you would like your drapes to completely “stack off the glass”. Meaning, that if you do not want to obstruct your view when your drapes are drawn open, you want the drapes to stack off the glass. This may also be important if your drapes are covering a door that you will need to open and close. You will want to make sure the drapes completely stack off the glass.

Stack Back will also help you determine how long your drapery rod should be. If you would like your drapes to stack off the glass, you will want to make sure that the drapery rod is long enough to accomodate the drape’s Stack Back. Stack Back can also give your windows the illusion that they are taller and wider than they really are, which makes your room look larger.

Custom Linen Drapes with Banding
Custom Linen Drapes with Banding

Remember to think about the whole design. And if you have questions, we’re here to help, just contact us and we would be happy to help you with your window treatment project.


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Why Does DrapeStyle Sell Drapes Separately?

Why does DrapeStyle sell drapes separately? We get this question quite often and the simple answer is that every window and every home has different needs. The next questions I usually get is, “Do people really buy just one drape?”. Yes they do.

Most of the time our customers will purchase a pair of drapes. If you would like a pair of drapes, be sure that your quantity is “2” when you are ordering online. But what if you have a sliding glass door? Because we have the ability to make any width or length drape, we can make you one drape for the sliding glass door. Maybe your sliding glass door opens on one side. Maybe you don’t have any room on the side of your door to put another drape. If this is your situation, you may want to consider purchasing a traverse track to make is easier to open and close your drape.

What if you have windows on either side of your fireplace? Not a problem, we would essentially make a pair of drapes, but you would only need to put one drape on each window.

In a similar situation, you may only have room for one drape on either side of your bed. Order a pair of drapes, the same size but only hang one drape on each window.

 

Needing decorative drapes for a wall of windows? We can do that too. You may need an odd number of decorative drapes to separate your windows and we can absolutely make these for your specifications.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Do you have a unique situation? Contact us and we would be happy to help you figure out a solution for your window treatments. DrapeStyle has been in business for over 15 years and we have experienced just about every situation. All of our drapes are handmade from the highest quality materials by the most talented seamstresses right here in Phenix, Arizona. The DrapeStyle way of making custom drapes takes a little more time, costs a little more money but we think its worth it and we think you’ll be pleased.


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Window Dressing On A Budget

Love the way custom drapes look but looking for a more cost effective to achieve that look? Here are a few tips to keep the cost of your drapery down.

A drape made with patterned fabric may cost more than a plain fabric, because you have to buy extra material just to match patterns across the seams. The bigger the pattern repeat, the more waste there is, and there really isn’t anything you can do about it. To keep costs down, look for a plain cotton or linen, or something with a very small pattern repeat.

 

Did you fall in love with the most expensive fabric?  If privacy isn’t an issue or you find that you can purchase inexpensive shades to achieve privacy, you can use the drapes as an accent. Purchase smaller side panels, pillows and tie backs in your favorite fabric and you will still be able to enjoy that pattern you love.

 

It’s always best to use generous amounts of an inexpensive fabric in drapes to get the best bang for your buck. Love the look of silk? Maybe you can find a polyester that has a similar look and feel for less money.

Purchase ready made curtains and have a custom detail added to them like additional banding, a trim on the leading edge.

To stay within budget, look for discontinued fabrics or shop at outlets stores to find lower prices on fabric for your drapes.

Consider installing the drapes yourself. With detailed instructions it really isn’t too difficult to hang drapery hardware and drapes.

Think about purchasing drapes as an investment. Purchasing drapes with energy saving interlining and linings can help lower the costs of your energy bill.

Contact DrapeStyle for more information on draperies, pillows or Roman shades. We have been in business for over 15 years and our trained consultants can help you design your dream drapes. Right here in the USA.


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What Pleat Style Do I Choose?

We are often asked by our customers, “Which pleat style do I choose?”. There isn’t a right or wrong answer, it’s a preference. Deciding what you like and which style will work for your room can be overwhelming so we try to break it down by asking a few questions.

What is the style of your room? Is it modern/contemporary? Traditional? Transitional?

How do you want your drapes to hang? Do you want them tailored, holding lines from the top of the drape to the floor? Or do you like a more relaxed look, structured at the top and relaxed or billowing as the drapes fall?

Will the drapes be functional? Will you be opening and closing these drapes often or are they stationary (just framing your window)?

Once we have discussed these specifics with you selecting a pleat style from one of our seven options is easy.

Rod Pocket-typically used in traditional spaces, this pleat style is recommended if your drapes are decorative and you will not be opening and closing them often. Rod Pocket drapery shirr snugly onto the drapery rod and do not move easily. Keep this in mind especially is your drapes are long, you may not be able to reach them in order to move them.

Flat Panel (no pleats)– flat panels are typically used to cover larger spans with less fullness (less ripple), or are used to give a relaxed or unstructured look to your window. This style will need to be dressed down to get an even fullness.

 

Grommet-clean and uniform by design, Grommet panels are a favorite for modern spaces. Grommets come in a range of finishes and diameters to compliment any window. Grommet panels require dressing to get an even fullness but are structured from top to bottom.

Inverted-if you like a structured heading but a more relaxed body, the Inverted pleat is perfect. The “box” shaped pleat is tailored at the top but looses the lines as it falls towards the floor. This works with modern and transitional styles. This pleat requires no dressing to achieve a uniform look every time.

Cartridge-the cylindrical shape of the Cartridge pleat offers the look of the flat panel but retains the structure of a pleated drapes. This look is clean and modern but can also be used in transitional applications.

 

French Pleat (Pinch Pleat)-the French pleat holds the lines of the drapery from the three-fold fan at the top to the bottom hem. Easy to open and close this requires little to no dressing and gives a nice uniform fullness anytime. This is our most requested pleat. We recommend it to compliment any traditional setting.

Parisian Pleat-a twist on the traditional French pleat, the Parisian pleat offers the same ease and structure of the French pleat with a slight modern twist. This pleat is recommended for modern or transitional spaces and is a favorite of our designers.

Custom draperies should reflect your style and personality; you really can’t go wrong with any pleat choice. But if you need a little advice, please contact us. DrapeStyle has been in business for over 15 years and everything is still made in the USA.


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Oval Office Curtains

We recently lost President H. W. Bush, and after looking at the news coverage and seeing photos from when he was in the Oval Office, I began to think about all the changes the Oval Office has gone through. Particularly the drapes. So I did some research about the Oval Office and how and why the changes come about.

Original Oval Office c. 1909

President William Howard Taft made the West Wing a permanent building, expanding it southward, doubling its size, and building the first Oval Office. Designed by Nathan C. Wyeth and completed in 1909, the office was centered on the south side of the building, much as the oval rooms in the White House are. Taft intended it to be the hub of his administration, and, by locating it in the center of the West Wing, he could be more involved with the day-to-day operation of his presidency. The Taft Oval Office had simple Georgian Revival trim, and was likely the most colorful in history; the walls were covered with vibrant seagrass green burlap.

Replica of the Oval Office during President Herbert Hoover’s era

On December 24, 1929, during President Herbert Hoover’s administration, a fire severely damaged the West Wing. Hoover used this as an opportunity to create more space, excavating a partial basement for additional offices. He restored the Oval Office, upgrading the quality of trim and installing air-conditioning. He also replaced the furniture, which had undergone no major changes in twenty years.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt

Congress has always been tasked with appropriating funds for the care, repair, refurnishing and maintenance of the White House and its grounds. Each incoming president has found furnishings that were worn out and in need of replacement due to everyday wear and tear. Congress approved funds enabling a new president to carry out structural improvements and purchase new furnishings from auctions, private sales and other sources, as well as occasionally authorizing the sale of furnishings that were out of repair or unfit for use.

Replica of the Oval Office during President Harry S. Truman’s era
Oval Office during President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s era

As of late, most Presidents rely on the White House collections of furniture, rugs, portraits, and objects to furnish the residence and the Oval Office.  Others, such as Presidents Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama, have declined to use the appropriated money in favor of using private funds.

Caroline and Kerry Kennedy in the Oval Office
President Lyndon B. Johnson in the Oval Office

 

 

 

 

President Gerald Ford

 

Oval Office during President Jimmy Carter’s era

Presidents have the option to have new furnishings made or reuse furnishings from past Presidencies. Furnishings are stored for future use.

President Ronald Reagan
Oval Office during President Clinton’s era

 

 

 

Installing President George W. Bush’s draperies
President Barack Obama

President Trump opted for reusing President Clinton’s draperies and President George W. Bush’s sofas.

Current Oval Office

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Jeffrey Alan Marks at DrapeStyle

 

DrapeStyle announced the addition of Jeffrey Alan Marks fabrics last month and the response has been incredible! World renowned interior designer, TV star, and author, has made his way to DrapeStyle and we couldn’t be happier!

Jeffery Alan Marks- Oceanview, Chair & Pillows

Jeffrey Alan Marks’ designs are infused with fresh informality, good nature and playful charm. Internationally recognized as one of today’s most influential American designers, this California talent captures each client’s personality to create timeless and livable interiors.

 

Jeffrey Alan Marks Fabrics

From London townhouses to Malibu beach compounds, Jeffrey’s work resonates. His thoughtful spaces are purposeful and authentic, begging to be lived in. For over two decades, his firm’s relaxed yet tailored interiors have stood apart.  Named one of “the town’s most-wanted designers” by The Hollywood Reporter, Jeffrey Alan Marks believes the design process should be fun and creative like his designs and personal style. Jeffrey studied design at the prestigious Inchbald School of Design in England and lived in Paris and Milan for many years allowing his work to draw cues from Italian and French methods.

Angelus Roman Shade

His colorful, comfortable design style translates to the atmosphere at his firm, JAM, Inc. Based in Santa Monica, the firm designs and develops luxury homes in America and the United Kingdom and develops commercial projects including restaurants and retail stores. New projects includes a chain of restaurants in Korea and exclusive eateries in New York, Montecito, and West Hollywood.

Designer Jeffrey Alan Marks

Jeffrey is included in House Beautiful’s list of the most influential decorators in American History and is on Elle Decor magazine’s A-List. His work is regularly published by major shelter magazines including Elle Decor, German Architectural Digest, and the British In Style Home. Often invited to share his design philosophy and laid-back personality, he is a favorite among worldwide television viewers and design industry forums.

Onshore Drapes, Parisian Pleats

To view his fabrics, please visit DrapeStyle.com or contact us for more information.


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Black Friday Deals 2019

Black Friday deals start THIS WEEK!

PLUS save $75 off your DrapeStyle order! Everyone is advertising Black Friday deals and DrapeStyle is no exception. You don’t need to wait until Friday. Starting on Thursday save on drapescurtainsroman shadespillows and drapery hardware AND save $75 on your order. Select from over 600 fabrics, 6 drapery pleat styles, 5 roman shade styles, and 4 different lining options.

 

Shop from the convenience of your own home and save on silklinen and cotton drapes.  With discounts as much as 40% off, these are some of the lowest prices of the year.  You’ll find great deals at www.drapestyle.com PLUS, when you sign up for DrapeStyle rewards, you will instantly earn $25 off your first purchase!  That’s a total of $100 off!

So if you are in need of replacing older window treatments, updating your home or simply don’t have any window treatments at all, consider DrapeStyle for all of your drapery, roman shade and drapery hardware needs. And for a limited time, save up to 40% off regular prices, PLUS save $75!

*Use coupon code “FRIDAY” at checkout.  $75 discount requires $999 minimum order, new orders only. Cannot be combined with any other coupons. Offer expires on November 23, 2018.


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How to Add Farmhouse Charm to Your Home

Charm and character. Achieving the farmhouse look is combining old and new. And everything shouldn’t match. Here are a few ideas on how to add a little Farmhouse Charm to your home.

Reclaimed Wood

There are probably many places near you that sell reclaimed wood. Even Home Depot sells it, it is now so popular. Reclaimed wood can be used to accent a wall, a ceiling, a backsplash, use them as shelving, or trim out something entirely. With its rustic look, reclaimed wood adds a rustic feel to modern homes. And because you’ve decreased the demand for newly sourced lumber, you’ll be helping with deforestation!

 

Wicker Furniture

Wicker furniture is an indispensable part of rustic, cottage and farmhouse interiors, not only for outdoor spaces. Go for some cool pieces for your kitchen and dining area. These can be wicker stools for the breakfast space and comfy chairs for the dining space. You can paint the furniture with grey or creamy paint to fit a neutral interior, and even neutral wicker furniture will add a texture to the space. There’s much modern wicker furniture of eye-catchy shapes, for example, armchairs, side tables and benches, they will look cool and cozy yet very chic and modern.

Shutters

Shutters can be used for various decor and functional DIYs in your home, they are great to add a vintage feel while keeping the interior farmhouse-like. Shutters can be attached to the wall and become cool farmhouse-inspired decorations or even a headboard for your bed – sand them a bit to give them a worn look. Shutters can be also turned into benches, chairs, shelving units, even a kitchen island. Paint them pastels or cream, add shelves or a countertop. This is a creative way to add a farmhouse feel to the space while making it eye-catchy and interesting.

 

Shiplap

There are many ways to decorate with shiplap. Whole rooms, accent walls, fireplaces, ceilings, cabinets and powder rooms (as an alternative to wainscoting or bead board), even kitchen backsplashes. You may choose to leave it in its natural warm tone or paint it. Either way it will add interest and character to any room.

 

 

 

White Everything

White walls, countertops, dishes and more. White makes everything look fresh and it’s easy to add a little color as the seasons change.

Draperies

Like jewelry to an outfit, draperies are to a room. The finishing touch for any room is adding decorative or function draperies. Choose a natural fabric such as linen, in a neutral color. Unstructured and relaxed, these drapes will finish off your charming farmhouse home. Visit DrapeStyle for more ideas on Farmhouse Charm. Linen and linen looking fabrics are available in a variety of colors.

If you are interested in adding a bit of Farmhouse Charm to your home, contact us. We can provide you with fabric samples for draperies that will finish of your room. Your first ten dollars in samples are free. View the samples here and pick your favorites.


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History of Curtains

The perk of buying curtains online has not always existed. For one thing, online shopping in general depended on the invention of the Internet. Prior to that, curtains were sold in department stores and boutique shops, made at home by the textile-fanciers, and completely non-existent in the way we know them today. Take a trip through curtain history to learn more.

A Timeline of Curtain History

31st Century B.C.

From the early 3100 B.C. to the 3rd Century B.C., the great Egyptians invented curtains and used them throughout their entire rule. The very first curtains were made of animal hides and hung in doorways with hooks. However, through the years the Egyptians spun textiles from flax and linen at first, followed by wool, silk, and cotton. These were very valuable because these materials were more flexible but still provided a similar layer of warmth as that from the hides.

Seventh to Sixth Centuries B.C.

According to Encyclopaedia Britannica, another discovery of curtain panels dates back to the 6th and 7th Centuries B.C. in ruins from Olynthus civilization in modern Greece and from Pompeii and Herculaneum civilizations in modern Italy. It is suspected these people used curtain panels to divide rooms, as opposed to our traditional window treatment use.

Early and Middle Ages

Since the Early to Middle Ages are also known as the Dark Ages, there is not much proof of curtain use at this time. However, during the 6th-15th centuries, we can suspect at least the more affluent people hung curtains in doorways and over windows to keep warm. Those large castles can be quite dark, dreary, and cold!

Renaissance Era

The Renaissance (14th-17th centuries) brought life, color, and light to the everyday people. Architecture started to embrace the use of glass panes as windows, which brought in the light but also the creepers. For the first time, people were able to see directly into another’s private space. Therefore, those who lived during the Renaissance used fabrics over the windows for privacy. It is worth noting, though, that although this use sounds just like how we use curtains today, the design was still vastly different.

18th to 19th Centuries

The eastern countries of Persia, India, and China excelled at weaving silks in beautiful patterns, and in the 18th and 19th centuries, these tricks of the trade expanded through Europe and the western worlds, especially in United Kingdom, France, Holland, and Italy. During the late 19th century, the development of machinery propelled the textile industry and made way for mass production and easy accessibility for individual homeowners. The designs were big, bold, and beautiful! At this time textile designers also made use of lace to create the first edition of the sheer curtains we know and love today.

20th Century to Present

The 20th century and 21st century have proved that anything is possible when it comes to curtains. With machinery and technology making incredible advancements, people are able to design and to create nearly any style or size of curtain. Curtain panels are hung over windows for privacy, warmth, and decoration, and they are hung in large rooms as dividers. The possibilities are endless!

Need a little more information on curtains? Do you have questions about replacing your current drapes? Contact DrapeStyle, we would be happy to help you with your window treatment project!


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Happy Labor Day Weekend

Happy Labor Day from DrapeStyle!

Here is a little information about Labor Day, courtesy of Wikipedia:

Labor Day in the United States is a public holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. It honors the American labor movement and the contributions that workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of the country. It is the Monday of the long weekend known as Labor Day Weekend and it is considered the unofficial end of summer.

Beginning in the late 19th century, as the trade union and labor movements grew, trade unionists proposed that a day be set aside to celebrate labor. “Labor Day” was promoted by the Central Labor Union and the Knights of Labor, which organized the first parade in New York City. In 1887, Oregon was the first state of the United States to make it an official public holiday. By the time it became an official federal holiday in 1894, thirty U.S. states officially celebrated this holiday.

Dupioni Bordered Silk Drapes in Cashmere and Graphite
Dupioni Bordered Silk Drapes in Cashmere and Graphite

DrapeStyle will be closed Monday, September 3rd.  We will be back on Tuesday to help you with your window treatment needs!  In the meantime, please browse our website for inspiration and information about the most beautiful custom drapes available today!  We can make any width or length drape in over 600 fabrics.  And with a team of talented seamstress, you are sure to receive the highest quality draperypillows and Roman shades.

If you need a little advice or would like to order fabric swatches, please let us know.

We have been in business for over 15 years, if you appreciate good design and superior quality DrapeStyle is your answer. And as always, your window treatments will be made right here in the USA.


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Decorating with Indoor Plants

Decorating with indoor plants, borrowed from www.bioadvanced.com:

When you embellish interior spaces with houseplants, you’re not just adding greenery. These living organisms interact with your body, mind and home in ways that enhance the quality of life.

Breathing Easier

When you breathe, your body takes in oxygen and releases carbon dioxide. During photosynthesis, plants absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen. This opposite pattern of gas use makes plants and people natural partners. Adding plants to interior spaces can increase oxygen levels.At night, photosynthesis ceases, and plants typically respire like humans, absorbing oxygen and releasing carbon dioxide. A few plants –orchids, succulents and epiphytic bromeliads –do just the opposite, taking in carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. Place these plants in bedrooms to refresh air during the night.

Releasing Water

As part of the photosynthetic and respiratory processes, plants release moisture vapor, which increases humidity of the air around them. Plants release roughly 97% of the water they take in. Place several plants together, and you can increase the humidity of a room, which helps keeps respiratory distresses at bay. Studies at the Agricultural University of Norway document that using plants in interior spaces decreases the incidence of dry skin, colds, sore throats and dry coughs.

Purifying Air

Plants remove toxins from air –up to 87% of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) every 24 hours, according to NASA research. VOCs include substances like formaldehyde (present in rugs, vinyl, cigarette smoke and grocery bags), benzene and trichloroethylene (both found in man-made fibers, inks, solvents and paint). Benzene is commonly found in high concentrations in study settings, where books and printed papers abound.

Modern climate-controlled, air-tight buildings trap VOCs inside. The NASA research discovered that plants purify that trapped air by pulling contaminants into soil, where root zone microorganisms convert VOCs into food for the plant.

Improving Health

Adding plants to hospital rooms speeds recovery rates of surgical patients, according to researchers at Kansas State University. Compared to patients in rooms without plants, patients in rooms with plants request less pain medication, have lower heart rates and blood pressure, experience less fatigue and anxiety, and are released from the hospital sooner.

The Dutch Product Board for Horticulture commissioned a workplace study that discovered that adding plants to office settings decreases fatigue, colds, headaches, coughs, sore throats and flu-like symptoms. In another study by the AgriculturalUniversity of Norway, sickness rates fell by more than 60 percent in offices with plants.

Sharpening Focus

A study at The Royal College of Agriculture in Circencester, England, found that students demonstrate 70% greater attentiveness when they’re taughtin rooms containing plants. In the same study, attendance was also higher for lectures given in classrooms with plants.

How Many Plants?

The recommendations vary based on your goals.
To improve health and reduce fatigue and stress, place one large plant (8-inch diameter pot or larger) every 129 square feet. In office or classroom settings, position plants so each person has greenery in view.
To purify air, use 15-18 plants in 6-8-inch diameter pots for an 1,800-square-foot house. That’s roughly one largerplant every 100 square feet. Achieve similar results with two smaller plants (4-5-inch pots).

Remember that for the best success with any houseplant, you need to match the right plant to the right growing conditions. Learn more in Tips for Healthy HouseplantsFor low light situations, choose a plant adapted to those conditions

Best Plants for Indoor Use

 

Common Name Latin Name Benefits Best use
 

 

Spider Plant

 

 

Chlorophytum comosum

 

 

Purifies air rapidly; removes formaldehyde

 

 

Living spaces

Dragon Tree1

 

Dracaena marginata

 

 

Purifies air; removes formaldehyde, benzene, toluene, and xylene

 

Living spaces
Gerbera Daisy2  

Gerbera jamesonii

 

Releases oxygen at night; purifies air by removing benzene and trichloroethylene

 

Bedrooms to refresh nighttime air or living spaces
English Ivy Hedera helix

 

Removes benzene from air

 

Dorm rooms or home office
Boston Fern

 

Nephrolepis exaltata ‘Bostoniensis’  

Humidifies air

 

Living spaces; note that dry winter rooms can quickly kill Boston ferns; mist plants daily for best results
Philodendron3

 

Philodendron

 

Purifies air; removes

formaldehyde

 

Living spaces of new or renovated homes with new floors, walls, carpets, etc.
Snake Plant

 

Sansevieria trifasciata

 

Purifies air; removes formaldehyde and nitrogen oxide

produced by fuel-burning appliances

 

Living spaces, kitchens, rooms with wood stoves
Peace Lily

 

Spathiphyllum

 

 

Removes mold from air

 

Bathrooms or damp areas of

home


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Why Use Blackout Lining?

Blackout Lining for your Drapes

DrapeStyle had a customer walk in today asking about solutions for keeping the heat out. Here in Phoenix we are experiencing 110 degree temperatures so this can really be an issue for us especially this time of year.

I walked him through a few scenarios and thought this is good information that should be shared.

A drapery lining fabric helps protect your curtains from sun and moisture damage, increasing the life of your curtains. The sun can fade and damage fabric over time, so a lining provides a protective layer from harmful UV light, not only for the face fabric, but also for your furnishings. Blackout lining provides the most protection from the sun.

A common reason to use drapery lining is to block light. Blackout drapery lining is specifically designed to block most or all light. Does the morning light wake you up too early? Do you work late shifts and have to sleep during the day? Do you have a child that takes naps during the day? Blackout lining is the answer.

Blackout lining is made by sandwiching a black opaque membrane between two white fabrics.  It is surprisingly thin and very flexible. This is a high end fabric unlike the stiff lining you might find in a hotel room. DrapeStyle only uses Hanes linings and our blackout lining will block out 95% off the light.

Insulating drapery lining helps regulate temperature and can dampen sound. All drapery lining will give some degree of insulation, but certain linings are specifically designed for it. They can help save on heating costs by reducing drafts and heat loss during the winter, and can keep things cooler in the summer by blocking heat from the sun. Insulated drapery lining also dampens sound and can help block outside noises.

Bump drapery interlining is particularly effective at thermal and noise insulation. Because it’s thick, bump is often used to create fuller, heavier looking draperies that have a luxurious feel. It’s commonly used with silks and taffetas. Bump is an interlining, meaning it should be sandwiched between the face fabric and another drapery lining.

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you have any questions about lining your draperies, please contact us. DrapeStyle has been in business for over 15 years and we continue to make high quality custom made draperies right here in the USA.


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Best Unknown Drapery Tips

Purchasing window treatments can be a daunting task. But it doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are a few tips to consider when purchasing window treatments:

Decide on whether you want shades or drapes.

Drapery can be lush and beautiful but may not always fit the space. If there is furniture or a radiator below the window, or if the window is in an awkward space on the wall, you may want to consider a Roman shade. Roman shades can be made in any fabric, they can provide much needed privacy, and look great especially when paired with draperies in the same room. If you have room for both, no problem! Many people will use a shade or shutters for privacy and use drapes to add color and texture to the wall. You can have both!

You get what you pay for.

You can certainly purchase window treatments from most retailers, but made to measure can make all of the difference. Custom made window treatments will ensure that the correct size and fabric are ordered for your application. High quality window treatments can be a big investment, but they are worth it.

Hang your window treatments high and wide.

The trend right now is to hang your draperies and Roman shades close to the ceiling and slightly wider that your window. This creates the illusion that your window (and room) is larger than it is. And it seems that there are no longer “typical sized windows” anymore. Often times ready made window treatments are not sold in the size you need. This is another reason to order custom made draperies and Roman shades. Having the right sized window treatment will make all the difference.

Don’t forget about the drapery hardware.

Like jewelry to an outfit, hardware can really make or break the window. If you are having window treatments made, don’t skimp on the hardware. Custom hardware can be ordered in the appropriate size, style and color to compliment your draperies.

Consult a professional.

Probably the most important tip. I’ve said it before, purchasing window treatments can be a huge task! And that’s why we’re here. DrapeStyle can help you every step of the way from sending you fabric swatches to helping you determine the right lining for your application. Simply contact us and we would be happy to help!

Window treatments can be the first thing you notice when you enter a room. They can really make the difference in the look and feel of the room, provide much needed privacy and add interest to your windows and walls. Don’t over look your windows, they need love too!


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Do You Know Sarah Richardson?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DrapeStyle carriers an excellent selection of high end, luxury designer fabrics. Here is a little information about one of our top designers, Sarah Richardson.

 

 

Sarah Richardson has been a key fixture of the Canadian design world since starting out in 1995, working behind the scenes as a prop stylist and set decorator. By the late 90’s, Sarah realized that she could carve a niche in the emerging world of design TV by sharing her practical, endearing and inspiring approach to décor and design with viewers.  She launched her first TV series for HGTV in 2000, Room Service. 17 years later, she is the host, co-creator and co-producer of over 250 episodes of design television that span seven hit HGTV series targeted directly to the needs of a contemporary audience.  Room Service, Design Inc., Sarah’s House, Sarah’s Cottage, Sarah’s Rental Cottage, Sarah 101, and Real Potential are a collection of lifestyle television series dedicated to tackling the demands and design challenges of modern living.

 

 

 

Known for her upbeat and easygoing approach to creating elegant and timeless designs for every room in the home, Sarah inspires and empowers viewers by effortlessly sharing her winning style formula. Sarah’s enthusiasm for all aspects of design is infectious, and her ability to engage and inspire viewers has earned her a loyal and dedicated fan base across North America and around the world. Sarah’s programs are seen in over 100 countries worldwide.

 

Want more inspiration? Check out Sarah’s show, Off The Grid, on HGTV USA. And when you’re ready, view her fabrics here and design your own custom draperies. Need a little help? We’re here for you! Just contact us for more information or if you need a little help ordering your custom window treatments. DrapeStyle has been in business for over 15 years and everything is still made right here in the USA.


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Celebrate Independence Day

This week our workroom will be closed so that our employees can take a much needed break from making all of the beautiful items our customers enjoy so much! We wish you, your family, and friends a fun and safe holiday as we celebrate America’s Independence Day!

Image result for fireworks imagesImage result for fireworks imagesImage result for fireworks images

 

 

 

 

 

I’m reposting this article I found on www.onetoughjob.org.

Independence Day (or Fourth of July) is a great time to teach your children about American history while also relaxing and enjoying the weather. Here are some ways to incorporate education into your celebration.

teach some history

Use these kid-friendly resources to teach your kids about the importance of the holiday.

History of Independence Day Video

Happy 4th of July!

Why Do We Celebrate the Fourth of July?

Interactive Fourth of July Games

let them vote

Teach your kids about our government by staging your own kid-friendly mini-democracy. Make ballot boxes and have the kids vote on things throughout the celebration such as hamburgers vs. hot dogs or chocolate ice cream vs. vanilla.

make a tasty and patriotic treat

Patriotic popcorn balls are both fun and easy snacks to make with your young ones!

Ingredients:

  • 15 cups of salted popcorn
  • ½ cup of butter
  • 4 cups mini marshmallows
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • Red & blue M&M’s (either original or pretzel!)

Directions:

1. Remove kernels from popcorn and place in large mixing bowl

2. Melt butter and mini marshmallows over medium heat until mixture is completely smooth

3. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla, then generously cover popcorn

4. Mix in your M&M’s, then with wet hands make popcorn balls and set aside on wax paper to cool

This recipe makes 7-8 popcorn balls!

Have a great holiday! ~The DrapeStyle Team.

www.drapestyle.com


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Drapes and Curtains Never Go Out Of Style

Drapes and curtains never go out of style! The fabric might but not the style.

From the beginning, window coverings were used for protection from the elements, for privacy, and to help keep the cold or warmth inside the home. The same holds true for today. Window coverings can help insulate your windows and help lower heating or cooling bills. Window coverings can provide much needed privacy-unless you don’t mind that your neighbors know what you’re up to! And window coverings can provide much needed color, texture and interest to your walls.

In the medieval times the more clothes people wore, the richer they were. The same rule applied to their homes and window treatments, the more fabrics and colors the window had the richer the family was. That’s how valances, cornices and curtains with trim were designed, to show the wealth of the family.

When I tell people that I design custom window treatments for a living they often ask, “Do people still buy curtains?”. And the answer is yes. Now, not everyone wants a beautifully textured silk drape with heavy lining, but we have a variety of styles and fabrics to choose from. Whether your taste is modern or classic, contemporary or industrial, we have something for everyone.

The benefit of purchasing draperies hasn’t always existed. At one time, window treatments were only available for purchase at stores. But now you can enjoy shopping from your home with the ease and convenience of online shopping. Looking for hard to find sizes? Let us make a custom sized drape or Roman shade for you. All shipped for free, directly to you.

DrapeStyle has been in business for over 15 years. We continue to custom make quality drapes, shades and pillows by hand. Nothing is ready made. Well made draperies will last 10-20 years or more. DrapeStyle’s way of making custom products takes a little more time and cost a little more but we think it’s worth it. We think you’ll be pleased.


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Using Outdoor Fabrics Indoors

“Can I use outdoor fabrics indoors?”  I get this question a lot.  The answer is simply, yes.

Today’s outdoor fabrics are durable, fade resistant, stain resistant and drape beautifully. They are perfect for high traffic areas, kids rooms, and places where pets reside. You wouldn’t know that the fabrics were made for outdoors; they are of such high quality, and excellent hand that you can really use them anywhere. Pillows, sofas, draperies, dining room chairs, ottomans, you name it. I have personally sold our outdoor fabric for all of these uses and they turned out beautiful.

Accord Koi
Astoria Sunset
Santorini Persimmon

 

 

 

 

 

There are so many colors and patterns to choose from that you are sure to find something to compliment your decor. If you don’t see it on our website, let us know and we will order it for you.

Clean up is a breeze. Simply remove any debris before cleaning. Then wash area with soap and water. Usually this will do this trick but you may also try laundering the upholstery covers. For mold and mildew, you may need to wash with a water and bleach solution.

Savvy Sangria
Scope Vintage
Viento Paprika

Please contact for more information on using outdoors fabrics, or view our collection of fabrics here. DrapeStyle has been in business for over 15 years. We continue to custom make quality drapes, shades and pillows by hand. Nothing is ready made. DrapeStyle’s way of making custom products takes a little more time and cost a little more but we think it’s worth it. We think you’ll be pleased.


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How Connecticut’s Homegrown Silk Industry Unraveled

Here is an interesting story I found on Atlas Obscura: https://goo.gl/VjBSPE

The problems began with a new variety of mulberry and ended with lumpy thread.

Rolls of dressed fiber, South Manchester, Connecticut, 1914.

Rolls of dressed fiber, South Manchester, Connecticut, 1914. NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY/ PUBLIC DOMAIN

In October 1789, during a trip to Connecticut, U.S. President George Washington described some “exceeding good” silk lustring and “very fine” silk thread that were part of a growing domestic industry. In fact, by the time Washington wrote those words in his journal, the area that became the state of Connecticut in 1788 had been practicing raw silk production, known as sericulture, for over half a century—and silk was on the rise.

By 1826, three out of every four households in Mansfield, Connecticut, were raising silkworms, and by 1826, Congress commissioned a report on the potential for a U.S. silk industry. By 1840, Connecticut outpaced other states in raw silk production by a factor of three. Within the next two decades, however, the industry would collapse, leaving the country to wonder what went wrong.

The Cheney Brothers silk mill in South Manchester, Connecticut.
The Cheney Brothers silk mill in South Manchester, Connecticut.

The unlikely development of Connecticut’s silk industry came about thanks Ezra Stiles, the seventh president of Yale University. Stiles was a sericulture enthusiast who experimented with cultivating mulberry trees, silkworms’ primary food source, and even wore gowns made from Connecticut silk to ceremonies. He also sent mulberry seeds and silkworm eggs across the state, and advocated for state-sponsored bounties to encourage farmers to plant mulberry trees.

One of the biggest triumphs for the early industry was figuring out how to adapt sericulture to cold weather. Such tactics included keeping silkworms warm by raising them in attics, and figuring out how to feed them in cold weather. Michael Cook, a modern sericulturist, describes the intense care and feeding schedule silkworms require.

Ezra Stiles, 1770.
Ezra Stiles, 1770. METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART/ PUBLIC DOMAIN

“Rise early, feed the worms before work; feed them again at lunch, feed them again in the evening and clean a dozen or so big trays, feed them again before bed. I was feeding a garbage bag full of [mulberry] leaves and small branches daily. Cocooning was a nightmare,” says Cook. In Connecticut with deciduous mulberry trees, that intensive feeding schedule was a problem in years with early frost. One innovation to extend the feeding season was to dry mulberry leaves, then mix them with water and flour to feed to silkworms.

Inspired by Connecticut’s raw silk production, local entrepreneurs invested in machinery to manufacture silk thread and fabric from reeled silk filaments. In 1810, the Hanks brothers opened the United States’ first silk-mill in Mansfield, Connecticut, and in 1838, the Cheney brothers opened a mill which would eventually expand to 38,000 spindles, and become the largest silk manufacturer in the U.S. The future looked bright for silk.

<em>Morus alba</em>, also known as White Mulberry or Common Mulberry.
Morus alba, also known as White Mulberry or Common Mulberry. PUBLIC DOMAIN

The problems began with a new variety of mulberry and ended with lumpy thread. Beginning with Stiles, Connecticut sericulturists had always used an Italian variety of white mulberry, Morus alba, to feed their silkworms. However, in the 1830s, as the industry pushed to expand quickly, farmers and investors latched onto a Chinese variety, Morus multicaulis, a subspecies of black mulberry which produced larger leaves and more of them per tree (today M. multicaulis refers to a different plant, a subspecies of M. alba)It could also be harvested more often. The price of M. multicaulis skyrocketed as speculators sought to profit from selling cuttings from these fast-growing trees.

Samuel Whitmarsh, a “charismatic and unreliable businessman” who owned a silkworm cocoonery in Massachusetts, stoked the M. multicaulis craze with pamphletstrumpeting the benefits of this new type of tree, and letters to various silk trade publications. Daniel Stebbins, Whitmarsh’s business associate during the craze, later recounted the story of one tree that a speculator bought in Massachusetts for $25 and sold in Connecticut to a farmer named Elder Sharp for $50. Sharp then declined an offer for $450 for a quarter share of the tree; within a year the tree was worthless. The bubble had popped.

Silkworm cocoons.
Silkworm cocoons. AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION (UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY) NEGATIVES

In the bubble’s aftermath in the early 1840’s, companies along the East Coast went bankrupt, as did Whitmarsh, and angry farmers tore out their orchards. Joshua Grant, a silk producer in Baltimore, called the collapse a “dire disaster that has overspread the land like a funeral pall.” Then a series of harsh winters, followed by a blight in 1843-44, killed many of the remaining mulberry trees.

Despite everything, in 1847, Stebbins remained hopeful about the “sequel of the silk industry.” But the region’s sericulture had one insurmountable flaw that prevented this revival: Stiles’ gowns aside, Connecticut’s silk was not industrial grade, so silk-mills could not use it to manufacture fabric. According to cultural anthropologist Dr. Janice Stockard, who has interviewed silk reelers in South China, reeling—the practice of unwinding the filaments of silk from their cocoons—requires observation, training, and practice. In 19th-century Connecticut households, women were expected to learn the skill from pamphlets.

“In pamphlets, the term ‘spinning’ described the critical technique of reeling silk from cocoons,” Stockard says. “Women in farming households improvised, based on their experience spinning wool and using technology found in the home, including the wool wheel.”

Fully grown striped silk worms.
Fully grown striped silk worms. AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION (UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY) NEGATIVES

The product they ended up with was adequate for sewing thread, but not strong enough for the industrial-silk-manufacturing infrastructure that Connecticut had begun to build. According to one scathing assessment, “Connecticut women in 70 years have not improved their knowledge of reeling.” Another issue, Stockard says, was the expectation that women could reel silk “whenever leisure from other duties permitted.” In other words, women were supposed to wedge a high-skill, time-intensive task into their already full workloads, and the result was sub-par silk.

“Simultaneously unwinding several cocoons from a basin of near-boiling water while twisting these filaments into one even thread and reeling it onto a wheel was hard,” Stockard says. “If reeling was interrupted to tend to a child or chore, the silk would gum up and lump.” Faced with this weak, lumpy thread, Connecticut manufacturers began to import raw silk from China, Japan, and Italy.

By 1881, sericulture in Connecticut had been entirely abandoned. The now much older Elder Sharp, who had valued his mulberry tree so highly, said, “Our silk was good, bright and strong, needing only patience to better understand the reeling… let us do what we can at this late day to repair our error.” Instead, silk-mills continued to import from Asia and continued to manufacture silk fabric through the mid-20th century. Today, the legacy of Connecticut’s silk industry can be seen in the white mulberry trees which have spread everywhere and are now considered an invasive species.

DrapeStyle has been manufacturing custom draperies, pillows and Roman shades for over 15 years. If you have questions or need a little advice, we’re here to help. Contact us for more information or pricing on your custom window treatments.


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