Baby It’s Cold Outside! DrapeStyle Can Help!

Winter’s coming…and according to the Farmer’s Almanac, you’d better stock up on long johns and firewood.  Especially if you’re east of the Rockies, predictions are, you are going to be hit hard!  Pair that with rising energy costs, and your monthly home heating costs could go through the roof!

Here are 7 things you can do to help combat a cold house and make your thermostat happy:

 

1. Add A Down Filled Comforter

Down has always been the preferred insulator when worn or for bundling up while sleeping.  Body heat is trapped between the little fluffs of down, creating a re-generating heat source that will keep you warm all night long.  There are different weight levels available-some are even available with dual-zone comforters for bed partners with different sleeping temperature preferences! The best down originates from birds from the coldest climates, such as Hungarian or Siberian geese.  Plus, using a duvet allows you to change your room’s look easily from season to season or from one style to another without having to reinvest in a quality insert. 

2. Use A Humidifier 

Cold, winter air is notoriously dry, often leaving your home’s humidity around 10%…far short of the ideal of 30-40%  Having the correct humidity levels not only provides additional warmth to a house, but it also has many other benefits such as reducing allergens, reducing the risk of furniture damage, and controlling static electricity.

3. Change The Direction Of Your Ceiling Fans 

Most fans spin and pull air up to the ceiling.  By simply reversing the direction of your ceiling fan and pushing the rising heat back down into your living space, you can save as much as 10% on energy costs.  Ceiling too high to manually change blade direction?  This may be a good time to replace your fan with one with a built-in remote control.

Door Draft Stopper Crochet Pattern, Crochet Home Decor, Draft Dodger, Draft Excluder, Home Decor Crochet Pattern

4. Reinforce Cold, Drafty Areas 

 Windows — Take a candle or incense stick to the window on a breezy day.  Move around the frame, inside and outside of the trim, and see if the smoke moves.  If it does, you have a draft spot.  Use paintable caulk for around the trim and silicone caulk outside if you can.  There are window weatherstrips available at most home improvement stores as well.  Insulating your window draperies can help keep the draft from entering the room as well.

Doors — The old, simple solution is a draft dodger-a fabric tube filled with sand or rice that lays along the bottom of your door.  Etsy has some fun and stylish options.  The best option, however, is to replace the weather stripping around your door, including the threshold strip. 

Scarlet Mulberry Silk, Cartridge Pleat

5. Add Insulated Drapery Lining 

DrapeStyle can help with this one!  DrapeStyle offers insulated drapery lining, also called thermal lining, for all drapes and roman shades.  It’s common for drafts to come in around windows.  However, most pre-fabricated drapery panels available at most retailers, come with a simple, thin lining or with no lining at all.  DrapeStyle’s custom drapes and roman shades include lining! Let us help you select the interlining that’s best for your climate.  Interlining also adds body and weight to your drapes for a very luxurious, custom look. Our skilled workroom can add the following interlining to your drapes:

Flannel Interlining— Similar to the lightweight flannel sheets your grandma used, this supple lining goes between the face fabric and standard sateen lining.  Flannel interlining has been shown to reduce heat loss by 25%.

Bump Interlining— Originally used in Europe’s cold-climate country homes, bump interlining offers the most insulation for cold and sound.  It also gives a nice weight and drape to fine fabrics, such as silk.

6. Add Rugs To Bare Floors

Aside for the obvious (that rugs are warmer than tile or wood), wool rugs in particular are a natural insulator similar to down.  They’re hypoallergenic, provide moisture, and are incredibly durable.  Well-kept wool rugs can be handed down through generations.  Even better than an area rug would be wall-to-wall wool carpeting.

7. Get An Energy Audit

An inexpensive (often subsidized-check with your local electric company) professional test for air leaks, insulation levels and other thermal performance factors is the best way to learn where the cold is getting into your house.  They will give you tips and tricks to help keep the cold out, and often times will do the work themselves at a discounted fee.  Click here for more information on audits. 

 

So there you have it, 7 great ways to help keep the cold out this winter.  Or, you could always take up baking, not only will the heat from the oven heat up your home, but the baked goods you hand out to neighbors and co-workers will get you off of Santa’s naughty list!

 

 


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Interior Designer Advice, Selecting Your Curtain and Drapery Fabric

I’d love to say that “there are no wrong choices” when in comes to selecting the appropriate fabric  for your next set of custom made draperies or curtains but that is just not reality.  There are many important consideration that you need to take in to account when selecting the correct fabric, here are some things to consider.

1.  Will your drapery be “functional” or “stationary”?  By functional, we mean, will you be opening and closing the curtains often or will they just be decorative and stationary.  If you plan on have functional curtains you will need to be sure that you are selecting a fabric that is sturdy enough to handle the constant tugging and pulling as they are opened and closed.  You can help your functional drapery last longer by buying a baton that you will attach to the leading drapery rings.  The baton, as you see in most hotel rooms, will allow you to open and close the curtains without touching the fabric with your hands.  Using batons can add years of life to your drapery and keep the oils from your hands off the fabric.

If you are planning on your drapery being functional you want to stay clear of very sheer fabrics including sheer linens, they will not hold up to much abuse.  Stick to cottons or traditional linens, Bristol Linens and cottons.  You can safely use most silks as long as they are protected with the use of a baton.

Important Designer Note – If you are going to be using a baton with your drapes and you have selected a “Grommet” header, or pleat, we recommend a product called “Grom-O-Link”.  Grom-O-Link is a patented Grommet System that will allow you to attach a baton to the leading grommet on your drapery panel.  There really is no other way to attach a baton to a grommet drapery panel without tearing the fabric.

If you are not planning on opening and closing the draperies very often, or maybe not even ever, you can omit the baton and leave them hung and “dressed” by your Installer.  For stationary or decorative panels you have many more fabric options to choose from.  You can select the most delicate sheer or linen and not be concerned with wear and tear.

2.  The second major consideration is sun exposure.  How much sun will your drapery panels be exposed too?  If you are installing your drapes on a window that will be exposed to a lot of direct sunlight you need to be very careful with your fabric selection.  You can still use most silks or linens but you need to be sure that your curtains are properly lined and interlined.  Simply lining your curtains is not going to be enough to block the UV rays over time.  You need to be sure that your panels have a heavy flannel interlining sandwiched between the lining and the face fabric.  The interlining will provide greater protection than a simple lined panel.  If you want to block almost all of the sunlight you may want  to consider blackout lining.  Blackout will provide the greatest level of protection from sunlight and UV rays.

Important Designer Note – Well made draperies that use high-quality linings including quality blackout linings will make you curtain panels very heavy.  If you compare the weight of a well made Designer Quality Custom Drapery or Curtain Panel to one that you would buy from a big-box department store, or even Ethan Allen Drapery you would be amazed at the difference in weight.  Department Stores import their drapes from China or India and the cost to ship them is very expensive.  Simply said, Department Stores and larger chains do not want their ready-made curtain panels to be heavy, it simply costs too much to ship them.  This is one major reason that, if you want real custom curtains and drapes you need to shop domestically.

3.  Outdoor Curtains and Drapery.  When it comes to selecting fabrics for drapery that will be used outdoor or will be in direct sunlight the only serious choice for fabric is Sunbrella.  Sunbrella offers a wide range of styles from conservative solids to contemporary patterns at reasonable prices.  The feature that defines Sunbrella is its color-fastness or ability to withstand a great deal of direct sunlight without fading or deteriorating like other fabrics would.  Sunbrella has a patented manufacturing process that makes it the only serious choice for outdoor curtains, drapery and pillows.

 

 

 

 

 


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How to Choose the Correct Lining for Custom Drapes

Choosing Drapery Lining
Choosing Drapery Lining

When considering your next set of custom drapes, selecting the correct lining may be the most important choice you make. Designers have always had a little secret when designing custom drapes for their Clients; the lining and interlining.

“It may sound like just an insignificant part of the construction of a drape but the lining may be the most overlooked and critical part of the Designing Process”, said Christian Lee, Production Manager at DrapeStyle in California. “Most consumers who buy ready-made drapes just don’t really know what they’re missing, by adding the perfect lining we can give the Client much more value for their money when compared to imported or ready-made”, Lee Added.

So let’s explore the options and the benefits of each.

The lining is the backing fabric used in the construction of a custom drape. It is used to create more fullness and protect the fabric from the harmful effects of sunlight. “A good lining is 50% cotton and 50% polyester. The cotton makes it soft to the touch and the polyester allows it to stand up to years of UV rays,” Lee said. “Use a 100% poly lining and it’s too stiff, use 100% cotton and it will disintegrate after just a couple of years,” Lee added.

Between the lining and the drape fabric is the Interlining. The interlining is sandwiched between the two fabrics. “The interlining is really where all of your options are and can make a huge difference in the value and lifespan of the drape”, Lee said. “You have great options today and there are some important considerations regarding the insulating factor of the curtain, the sound barrier performance and overall look of the product” Lee said.

“Most people are unaware that, according to the US Department of Energy about 25-30% of their homes energy is lost through their windows,” Lee added. “Installing custom drapes with a heavy-weight (6oz) cotton flannel interlining can reduce the loss of heat by 25% in the winter and also reduce heat gain in the summer by up to 33%” Lee said. When choosing an interlining material you should use a 100% cotton flannel material which will provide great insulation plus an added sound barrier.

For those who live in a frigid climate, you may also want to consider using an English Bump Interlining which is about twice the thickness of flannel interlining. As the name implies, English Bump is a traditional material that was used in the cold damp winters of England to keep homes warm. “You really have to know what you’re doing with Bump”, said Lee, “It is very heavy and difficult to properly sew but the results are amazing, it’s like wrapping a blanket around your house”.

Another common interlining is “Blackout” or “Outblack” which blocks about 99% of the sunlight from penetrating through the drape. “Blackout has never been more popular with our Clients”, said Lee. “We have always used blackout for many high-end hotels and restaurants and now consumers are asking for it for their home media rooms, bedrooms, etc.” Lee added. Blackout protects the drapery fabric and may also protect the upholstery in the room by blocking the harmful UV rays that can destroy upholstery fabric.

“There are some great options available today and when using the right fabric, lining and interlining combination you can get far more value out of custom drapes than ever before”, Lee said. “If you really do the math, buying well-made custom-drapes from the right place will often cost you less in the long-run than buying a ready-made product.”


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