Lisa's Blog for Drapestyle

Lisa's Blog for DrapeStyle

For Well Over a Decade DrapeStyle has Manufactured the Finest Custom Drapery Available for Designers and Homeowners in the US and Canada

Posts Tagged ‘custom drapes’

Betsy Ross – Drapery Seamstress

So we just returned from our summer sojourn to the East Coast.  This year we took the kids into Philadelphia for a couple of days to explore the historic sites.  We hit all of the normal stuff.  Saw Ben Franklin’s tomb, Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell.  The weather was absolutely perfect and the People in the City of Brotherly Love were pleasant and helpful.  We really had a great trip.

One of the interesting things that we learned was on the tour of Betsy Ross’s home.  Well, for one, her real name was not Betsy Ross but actually Elizabeth Griscom.  We were also happy to know that her profession was that of a Seamstress.  She repaired upholstery and made bed-linens.  Her primary job was actually making custom drapes and curtains for paying Customers in the Philadelphia area.  She was know for very high quality which is why General Washington asked her to sew the very first American Flag.  When Washington asked her to sew the flag she confided that she had never even made a flag before but he was so impressed with her sewing skills he engaged her to sew the Flag.

 

 

Introducing Mulberry Silk Drapes at DrapeStyle

We are really happy to have a new line of Mulberry Silk Drapes at DrapeStyle.  Mulberry Silk is simply the absolute finest quality of Silk Fabric you can buy.  This Silk is harvested from Silk Worms that have been raised in climate controlled rooms and fed nothing but a diet of pure Mulberry Leaves.  The result is the finest, softest most uniform Silk fibers available.  The fibers are so consistent that just one thread can be as long as 180 feet.

When woven into silk fabrics the long, uniform threads mean that the resulting fabrics are thick, uniform and free of almost all nubs or imperfections.  We are one of very few Manufacturers in the US that have been able to purchase the Mulberry Fabrics and we ordered them in 14 amazing exclusive Designer Colors.

Please order sample of this fabric and feel the difference for yourself.

 

 

Restoration Hardware Now Offers Custom Drapery

Restoration Hardware is now offering a new collection of custom made drapery in silk and linen fabrics.  They look great and are made in the US by local Workrooms who make each custom drapery panel to order.  I was surprised by a few things:

  • Absolutely no returns, exchanges or refunds.
  • Pricing is really, really high.

I am sure like most things that I have purchased from Restoration Hardware, the quality will be good.  The lead-time is only 14 days which is very competitive.  We will certainly keep an eye on the offering and I’d love to hear how the panels look and what the quality looks like.

 

 

 

Online Drapery Reviews

One of the great things about the internet is that it adds so much transparency to shopping because online drapery reviews are everywhere.  As a Online Drapery Retailer we are under the microscope with every single order, every single Customer.  Today we have to be (and I like to think we have always been) laser focused on Customer Service and Custom Support.  That is not to say that we don’t mess up.  We do.  I think the critical thing to do when “messing up” is to face up to it.  Accept the responsibility, learn from it and try everything in your power to not let it happen again.  In our business we are making a “Custom Product”, Draperies.  It may sound simple but there are a lot of moving parts to manage.  There are fabric issues, back-logs, dye-lots, deadlines and a million other little things that can simply fall off the tracks.  At DrapeStyle we’ve been a leading online retailer of custom drapery for over a decade.  We try very hard to take care of our Customers and focus on quality.  Thankfully our online drapery reviews speak for themselves.  Not 100% perfect, but, who is?  We are a business of humans making things with their hands and what is more human than to error on occasion.

Here is one of our favorites from Houzz…

This is the first time I used an online company to purchase custom drapery. I was apprehensive about the process given the fact that measurements for this type of project need to be accurate. The company was very responsive in getting fabric samples out to me quickly. I contacted them a few times to make sure that I had the correct dimensions on my order and they were very helpful in walking me through the process. The quality of the finished product is excellent as well as the customer service and the drapes fit perfectly.

 

 

Need Some Help Visualizing Your Custom Draperies?

Sometimes we all need a little help visualizing what the final outcome will look like.  Architects and Designers create renderings all the time to help their Clients “see” their ideas.  At DrapeStyle, we are happy to so the same.  After all, no one has a wider variety of custom draperies than we do.  So, we are happy to help you “visualize”.  If you are looking at one of our silk or linen draperies and would like a better view of what different fabric colors may look like just give one of our Designers a call.  We will either create a drawing, or sketch of a design for you or we will create a digital rendering where we adjust the colors of our drapery styles to match your selections.  In the end, you get a better visual tool to see what it is you are ordering before you place your custom drapery order.

Here are some examples:

 

 

 

Selecting the Proper Grommets for Custom Drapery

You would think that all Grommets are created equal.  The truth is, that if you are buying your drapery from most of the larger retailers than, they probably are.  Not at DrapeStyle though.  We buy all of our Grommets from the premium supplier in the US for drapery supplies.  They sell a range of quality (and priced) grommets.  I would bet that most manufacturers are simply going to buy the cheapest and at nearly $1.00 per grommet it hard to blame them.  At DrapeStyle we only buy the best grommets available, period.  Our grommets are heavy weights.  They won’t bend very easily or crack.  Nothing worse than buying gorgeous silk drapes and having a grommet crack and tear the silk fabric.  Ruining one set of silk drapery is going to offset any savings you are going to get from buying cheap grommets for a long time.

For our Outdoor Drapery we use very thick grommets that are made of 100% brass.  Brass is resistant to corrosion and will not tarnish like most every other metal.  If you are buying any Outdoor Drapes from anyone, please insist that the grommets are made of Brass.  Our Brass Grommets can be powder coated in a variety of finishes.

My First Drapery Blog Post!

Growing up I was fortunate enough to have a mom who runs a drapery company; sounds a tad unheard of, selling drapes that is. When you’re growing up, no matter what grade or age, your peers, teachers, and friends are usually curious of what your parents do for a living to mentally determine what they predicted you would grow up to be. I always had a difficult time explaining what exactly my parents did, because being an 11 year old girl in Mrs so-and-so’s 5th grade class, not everyone knew what the words ‘distributing’ nor ‘manufacturing’ meant… and the same patterns followed until I got to about 8th grade. I had one friend of mine who always asked how my parents’ hairstyling salon was going… she had a little bit of a harder time comprehending the words ‘manufacturing’ and ‘distributing’ … along with the words ‘drapery business’ as well, apparently. But in all seriousness, I liked telling and explaining to my friends what my parents did because it was unique… my dad didn’t work in a cubicle and my mom wasn’t a stay-at-home mom; I liked that it took me more than four words to describe my mom’s profession… ‘she doesn’t work’ didn’t quite fit her career description, but ‘a hard-working, patient, and sacrificial mom’ was close enough to sum it up if I were to put it in a few words. I don’t have a hard time expressing myself, nor my opinion, and that may be generated from the endless options of drapes and shams I am able to choose from to throw in my room and call my own creation… although I cant quite call it my own, yet I have a room that fits my personality and preference as a result either way. When I help in the showroom, I have stamped and stared at enough covers of catalogs as a procrastination strategy to kill time before Amy noticed to have  the motto of the company permanently engraved in my knowledge … ‘Beautifully Made to Order’, and I have to agree. I have seen many draped wrapped up in the plastic covers about to be shipped to their customers by the dozens to know what beautifully made drapes look like. I have an idea what effort is put into them because I see the Ladies in the Workroom busting their butts sewing them together stitch by stitch, yet they still seem to love their job almost as much as my parents do. I didn’t know people could actually enjoy work… now I do.

Like I said, this company is unique, stitched together with scattered words such as ‘manufacturing’ and ‘distributing’, but once you’re 14 and writing a blog post for your Dad, it doesn’t seem so bad.

Drapery Pleat Styles

At DrapeStyle we offer nine unique pleat styles online.  Our Seamstresses can make practically any pleat style so if you have seen a pleat style that is not offered on our website just give us a call and we can typically make it.  Here are some of our most popular pleat styles for our custom drapes.

 

Flat Drapery Panel:  On a flat panel we hem the top of the drapery and add a buckram tap to the header.  The buckram stiffens the top of the drapery panel and also supports the drapery pins which attach to the drapery rings.

flat drapery panel

The Flat Drapery Panel is the most basic pleat without any detail at the top of the drapery panel.

 

 

 

French Pleat:  The French Pleat is also known as a “Pinch Pleat” is one of the most iconic and classic of all drapery pleats.  French Pleats are most commonly formed with “three fingers” and also available in “two finger” styles.

french pleat

The French Pleat is the most common and classic of all drapery pleats

 

 

Cartridge Pleat:  To form a Cartridge Pleat, our Seamstress will create a cylinder in the drapery heading which is then filled with one of our Patent Pending “Pleat Plugs” which keeps the cartridge pleat form uniform and consistent.

 

cartridge pleat drapes

The Cartridge Pleat Custom Drapery

 

 

Inverted Pleat:  One of our most popular drapery pleats is the Inverted Pleat.  The Inverted Pleat can be both classically traditional and contemporary.  With the Inverted Pleat the Seamstress tailors a 5 inch inverted fold in the heading of the drapery panel which are sewn from the back of the panel.

 

inverted pleat drapes

The Tailored Inverted Pleat Custom Drapery Panel

 

 

8″ Inverted Pleat:  Another version of the Inverted Pleat that we offer on our Custom Drapes is the 8-Inch Inverted Pleat.  Essentially the same as a standard Inverted Pleat but we add an additional 3 inches to the length of the pleat.

Eight Inch Inverted Pleat

The Eight Inch Inverted Pleat Custom Drapery

 

Parisian Pleat:  A Parisian Pleat is similar to the French Pleat but the “flute” is pinched and tacked at the top of the pleat as opposed to in the center.

parisian drapery pleat

The classic Parisian Drapery Pleat Custom Drapes.

 

Rod-Pocket:  The Rod-Pocket Panel is a very common and simple drapery pleat where the drapery rod is inserted into a “pocket” at the top of the drapery panel.  Rod-Pockets are typically found in “Ready Made” department store drapes.

The Rod-Pocket Custom Drapes

rod-pocket drapery panel

 

Grommet Drapes:  Our most contemporary drapery pleat style is the Grommet Panel.  Grommets are also very popular on Outdoor Drapes where we use Brass Grommets which are corrosion resistant.

custom grommet top drapes

Grommet Top Custom Drapes are our most contemporary style.

 

 

Curtain & Drapes Review

A nice review we received today on Houzz…

 

DrapeStyle provided amazing custom window treatments and hardware for our home. The quality, craftsmanship and design help and advice was/is excellent. We shopped all the usual suspects for custom drapery/treatments. Drapestyle did it the way “I” wanted (drapery & valances & Roman Shades) and at a reasonable price – reasonable for custom treatments :-) All hand made in the USA including high quality USA made hardware. I finished the install just last night and am absolutely 100% thrilled with the results.

Combining Custom Drapes with Roman Shades

We love to combine different textures with our drapes.  We’ll often combine Roman Shades and Woven Shades.  So often Clients think that they have to chose between “shades” or “drapes” when they can actually get a great combination of texture and depth by using both styles in concert.  Even if you are dealing with larger windows where you need extra long drapes or extra wide drapes you can still get a great look with either a Roman Shade, Woven Shade or even try layering a sheer behind the draperies.

Also, don’t think that if you are looking at two treatments you are looking at double the price.  When you are using two different styles we can often save your budget by using less material in the drapery, especially if you are just going to be using it as a static panel.  Give one of our Designers a call and we can help you find the best solution for your windows.

 

 

 

chocolate-brown-silk-drapes

Chocolate Custom Silk Drapes with Schumacher Tie-Back.

yellow silk drapes

Cashew Solid Dupioni Drapes with Inverted Pleat

blue silk drapes

Aqua Blue Dupioni Silk Drapes

Made in America

I had a chance to get out and visit one of our Suppliers near Los Angeles yesterday.  It was hot.  Like 106 degrees hot.  This supplier is where we buy our iron drapery hardware and we have been buying from them for years.  They had a fire last year that nearly destroyed their business and it was time to make a visit and see how they are re-building.

When I started to walk toward the office I noticed that they had their workshop door wide-open.  Standing in the sun was something that not many of us ever see being used, an anvil.  And yes, it was being used.  One of their Artisans was standing there and literally hammering out iron that would eventually become a drapery finial.  The outside temperature was 106 and I imagine that inside the workshop it had to have been 120.

We use words like “hand-forged” and “hand-made” very loosely these days.  I am sure that if you really dig down deep into the way most “hand-made” things are really made you might be a little disappointed.  I stood and watched this Man hammer that iron for a few minutes and I felt a sense pride.  Not really proud of DrapeStyle but just proud that their are People in America that are still making things with their hands.  And, there are Companies that, when they say, “Hand Made” they actually mean, “Hand Made”.

 

Drapes in Luxurious Shchumacher Fabrics

Oh my how we love to make drapes in amazing Schumacher Fabrics at DrapeStyle.  If you know Fabric, than you know Schumacher and you know that it is not cheap.  We work with some Schumacher’s that are more than $350 per yard.  When you are making drapes in fabrics that are $350 per yard, you better make sure that the Drapery Seamstress knows what she is doing.

At DrapeStyle our Workroom Manager, Berta has been making custom drapes since 1965.  She pretty much has it down to a science by now – or really down to an art form.  Our Seamstresses have an average of 15 years experience working on custom drapes and when it comes to working on $350 per yard fabric, we are pretty confident that there aren’t a more capable group of Seamstresses around.  So, if you are looking for amazing custom designer drapes that make a statement, consider looking at our Schumacher Collection.  I’d also suggest calling one of our Designers who can help you to confirm your measurements and walk you through your order 800-760-8257.

 

 

designer drapes

Amazing Designer Drapes in Schumacher Fabrics

 

 

drapery workroom

Our Amazing Drapery Workroom Manager

 

 

Linen Drapes

One of the most common questions we get is about our linen drapes wrinkling.  It’s no secret that linen fabrics are prone to stubborn wrinkles and no one wants drapes that look like crumpled paper.  The simple answer is that linen drapes are going to be more wrinkled than any other fabric that we carry but there are some things you can do to help.

First:  Please make sure that you open the drapes as soon as they arrive and hang them as soon as possible.  We keep all of our drapes hanging until the moment that they are bagged and then boxed.  As soon as they are boxed they are shipped.  We never leave any of our drapes boxed for an extended period of time.  I like to think of them as “fresh produce” – box them and get them on the truck!  Once you get your drapes hung they should relax pretty quickly and the wrinkles should fall out by themselves over the course of a few days.

Second:  If you have hung your linen drapes and they have a few stubborn wrinkles in them you can steam them out.  Don’t use an iron but get your self a garment steamer and fill it with distilled water.  You will need to steam them pretty thoroughly but please do not steam the fabric so much that they get “wet”.  It will be helpful to stream from both the front and back of the fabric.

Finally:  Really bad wrinkle?  You will have to break out the iron.  Use a medium heat setting and get a small travel-size iron-board that you can hold up behind the drapery fabric.  Doing this will allow you to iron your drapes while they are hanging which is the best way to iron them.

We recently launched our new line of blended linen drapes, we call them the Manhattan Linen Collection.  The Manhattan Linens are great because they are woven with a small amount of polyester which really helps to reduce or even, eliminate wrinkles.  These Linen Drapes give you the best characteristics of 100% linen with the wrinkle resistance of polyester.  Order a sample and have a feel for yourself.

 

linen drapes

Our Manhattan Linen Drapes are wrinkle resistant.

 

 

Custom Drapes Online

Most people think that if they are looking to buy custom drapes online they are going to have to give-up service.  After all most online drapery retailers are just huge call-centers that churn and burn sales people every couple of weeks.  You may have a catalog in front of you from one of these retailers and call their call-center to find that the person on the other end of the phone doesn’t know much more about custom drapes than you do.

At DrapeStyle, things are different.  We’ve had the same Team of Sales Designers for over 7 years.  They are not commission based and they aren’t trying to sell you anything that you don’t need.  In fact, our Designers are more concerned with having a happy Customer than making a sale.

Our Designers are also “real” Designers who have gone to school to learn there trade.  After School they have worked in Design Firms where they have actually met with Clients, prepared drawings and specified custom drapes for extra long windows, wide window and really every kind of window you can imagine.  We have to pay our People more than what a “call-center” would have to pay their People but we think it’s worth it.  As a matter of fact, we know that it’s worth it.  Our Designers are true “consultants” and they are very capable of making sure that when you order your custom drapes you are getting the right size, pleat style and lining option, including blackout lining, that your will work in your living room, bedroom or where ever.

 

cusotm drapes for long windows

Custom Drapery Design for Extra Long Windows

Elegant Drapes

When you are measuring for your custom drapes you may want to consider adding 4-5 extra inches to the length as a puddle.  A Designer Secret for creating more elegant drapes is to add a puddle which spreads our on the floor beneath the drape.  A puddle will also give the illusion that your windows and ceilings are taller.  At DrapeStyle we often use drapes that puddle on the floor in our photo-shoots as they are more traditional and elegant.  If you need any help in measuring for your draperies, even if you have extra long windows please give one of our Designers a call and we can help you to determine the perfect length for an elegant puddle.  We would be happy to provide you with free fabric samples along with great advice.  For over a decade, DrapeStyle has been the very best place to buy custom drapes online.

linen drapes puddle

Custom Linen Drapes That Puddle on The Floor

You can add an elegant puddle to your custom drapes in either linen or silk fabrics.

elegant silk drapes

Silk Drapes that Puddle on the Floor. Add 4-6 Inches to your Length for a Elegant Puddle

 

Adding a puddle to striped silk drapes with a tassel creates a unique designer look.

 

designer drapes

Striped Silk Drapes with a Tassel Which Puddle on the Floor Creating a Elegant Designer Look.

Living Room Drapes

One of the common themes that we are finding is that more and more of our Clients are converting their living rooms into more of a Home Theater Room.  They are going with the larger flat panel televisions and want to make their living rooms as “Theater Like” for those afternoons where they want to crawl up on the couch and watch a movie or a game.  We always try to suggest to them when considering their living room drapes to upgrade to our Blackout Lining option.  Blackout is a synthetic lining which blocks out about 98% of the light from penetrating through the drapery fabric.  The result is that blackout helps to convert your typical living room into a Home Theater Room.  And, maybe the best part is that you can upgrade to blackout lining for only $99 per panel – any size panel, at DrapeStyle.

One other added benefit is that the blackout lining is going to help protect your all of your interior fabrics from sun damage and fading, including your carpets.  And, if that is not enough, Blackout will also help reduce your energy bills by providing additional insulation.  If you are buying drapes for you living room, you really should give Blackout lining some serious consideration.

 

 

Making Some Extra Long Drapes Today!

We’re making some really long and really wide custom drapes today for a Client in New York.  These are Linen Drapes in our Hotel Collection and they are just over 15 feet long and 9 feet wide.  These are really big drapery panels and adding the trim is not an easy task.  The trim is hand cut out of silk fabric, tacked to the linen drapes and then sewn on.  These are true Artisans at work!  Notice how she is using a straight-edge to guide the silk trim on the linen fabric.

 

extra long linen drapes

Extra Long Linen Drapes with Silk Trim by DrapeStyle

Amazing Seamstress’s

Our Industry is dying.  Yes, it is really dying.  We work in a creative Field of talented Men and Women who have been mastering the will of complicated machines to create works of Art for decades.  They are not making them anymore. Not making the machines and not making the Men and Women.

The amazing People who make your Drapes don’t text or Instagram.  They don’t have “Smart Phones” of Facebook Accounts.  They work in the world of Art and Science.  They take rolls of fabrics and bend and fold them.  They cut them and steam them.  Finally they sew them and fold them.  Iron them and hang them.  The end result is often “Perfection” the way so few of us get the opportunity to know.  Perfection comes from mastering a skill that very few ever can, and even fewer even try.  These Men and Women are true Artisans and Masters of a dying Craft.

So, what of our Future?  Who will take their places? Who will work these machines?  Once these machines were cutting-edge technology.  To many of us they still are.  Like the People who run them they are 2/3 iron and 1/3 fluid.  They are 100% capable.  They are 100% dependable.  And, they are beautiful work of Arts.

We are blessed to have the People we have.  They will not be here forever and there are very few who are learning their Art Form.  We make drapes of silk and linen and, in doing so, we are trying to keep an Art-form alive.

Whether you are looking for Custom Silk Drapes, Custom Linen Drapes, Extra Long Drapes or any other Custom Drapery Style, we at DrapeStyle think that we are simply the best place online to buy custom drapes.

Thank you for supporting our efforts.

 

Sale Pricing

We’ve updated our current Sale Pricing at DrapeStyle.  Until May 9th you can get our Signature Custom Silk Drapes at 20% Off Retail.  This is about the deepest discount that we have ever offered.  If you compare our pricing on Silk Drapes with practically any other big-box retailer or online retailer you’re not going to get a better value, period.  At these prices there really is never a reason to settle for ready-made drapes when you can have the perfect length, width and pleat style for less than ready-made prices.  We are also extending our promotion on Blackout Lining.  For a limited time, you can upgrade your drapes to Blackout Lining for only $99 per panel.  You are not going to get a better deal on custom blackout drapes than at DrapeStyle.  And, our Blackout comes from Hanes, which is the Industry Standard in quality blackout drapery linings.

Our Handwoven Silk Drapes are also discounted at 20% Off as well.  If you haven’t seen this fabric you really need to order some fabric samples as soon as possible.  The Mill does not have much of the Handwoven Silk left in stock.

 

drapes on sale

Custom Drapes On Sale at DrapeStyle

 

 

Cartridge Pleat Drapes

Yeah!  DrapeStyle has it’s very first Patent!  In the drapery business we have always just sort of done things they way they have always been done for a hundred years, but not at DrapeStyle.  When we make a Cartridge Pleat Drape we basically make a cylinder or a cone.  The inside of the cylinder is empty and just about every custom drapery manufacturer in the world will stuff that cylinder with paper or pillow-fill or something else to keep the cartridge pleat, well, shaped like a cartridge.  When you “stuff” a cartridge pleat or a goblet pleat with paper or whatever you run into a couple of problems.

The first problem is that if you crush, pinch or otherwise misshape the pleat they are not going to “bounce back”.  As a result you get pleats that are either misshapen, crooked or just not, well a cartridge pleat.

Problem number two, is that when you fill the pleat with “material” you leave little spaces in there.  Little dark spaces.  And, we know who likes little dark spaces, right?  Yes, little crawly creatures.  They like to move into cartridge pleats and build themselves little nests.  And, once they have a nest they like like to fill that nest with little baby crawly things.  Before you know it you have a little crawly thing condo happening in your drapes Cartridge Pleats.  Not at all what you had planned!

So, introduce the DrapeStyle Solution to the little crawly thing happening in your Cartridge Pleats.  The Pleat Plug.  Yes, this little device may seem innocent enough but it is the answer to colonies of little crawly guys forever.  Plus, with the new Pleat Plug Technology with your Cartridge Pleated Drapes or Goblet Pleated Drapes you now end up with perfectly formed pleats that will last the lifetime of the drape.  And, DrapeStyle gets themselves a Patent for “Drapery Technology”!!

 

cartridge pleat plug

The Cartridge Pleat Plug by DrapeStyle!