Dress Your Drapes

Sarah Richardson Fabric

When ordering custom made drapes there’s a few things that you should expect; premium fabrics and linings, weighted bottoms, returns and overlaps, and packaged carefully so all you have to do is remove the plastic wrap and hang them when your custom drapes are delivered.

DrapeStyle hits all of these points and you can expect your drapes to look great and ready to hang once they arrive at your door. Once your custom drapes are completed, they are fan folded. This means that two (or more!) people have worked together to carefully fold the drapes so that the creases line up with the pleats.

Then, paper cuffs are wrapped around the drape in a few places to help hold the folds.

The drapes are placed in long plastic bags and sealed to protect the fabric while in transit. They are then placed on long tables until shipping day. The drapes are then carefully placed in a box, and packaged tightly to limit the amount of movement while in transit. As soon as the order is shipped, the customer is emailed a note to let them know their order is on the way and tracking information is provided.

When your drapes arrive you will be able to hang them right away. We install silver metal drapery pins to the back of the header and they easily slide into carriers on a traverse track or onto drapery rings. If you can’t hang your drapes right way, we suggest laying them flat on a table or draping them over a chair to minimize wrinkling. A care card is included in your order should you need to touch up the drapes and work out some of the wrinkles. But most of our customers find that after the drapes hang for a week or so, the wrinkles will work their way out.

If you have any questions about custom drapes, please contact us. DrapeStyle has been in business for 17 years and we know draperies. Made right here in Phoenix, Arizona with the highest quality fabrics, linings and threads, we’re sure you’ll be pleased with your purchase.

Marimekko-Finnish Design House

One of my favorite design houses is Marimekko. I recently had the pleasure of visiting New York City and made a stop at the Marimekko flagship store on Fifth Avenue. Read more on this incredible design house that has been around for so many years.

 

It all began in 1949

Viljo Ratia founded Printex, a small Helsinki-based textile printing company, in 1949. Viljo’s wife, Armi Ratia, envisioned a bold future for textile design and manufacturing. To fulfil her vision, she gathered promising young artists around her and asked them to create new and striking fabric prints for Printex.

One of the young artists was Maija Isola, whose Amfora design was among the first fabrics printed at Printex.

A lot of admirers but no buyers – how do you use such unusual fabrics?

Armi’s solution: a fashion show filled with color, style and exceptional patterns! The clothes designed by renowned fashion designer Riitta Immonen were literally sold on the spot. Marimekko was registered as a company five days later, on 25 May 1951. The following year Marimekko opened its first store in Helsinki.

Vuokko Eskolin-Nurmesniemi joined Marimekko in 1953 to design clothing and print patterns. What Vuokko did for Finnish women can be equivalent to what Coco did for French women; one should be able to move freely in one’s clothes. Alongside her radical loose-fitting dress designs, Vuokko created one the most enduring Marimekko classics: the unisex Jokapoika (every boy) shirt in the striped Piccolo pattern.

Jacqueline Kennedy purchased seven Marimekko dresses in Massachusetts and wore one of them on the cover of Sports Illustrated in 1960, increasing popularity in the United States.

Marimekko became an internationally renowned phenomenon and a way of life. The company grew rapidly and its product range expanded to include a variety of accessories and home items. Armi Ratia built a utopia called Marikylä (Marimekko Village), whose aim was to house the staff and to function as a laboratory for product design and Marimekko living.

Today

Marimekko’s global expansion has been in full swing in the ’10s. The number of Marimekko stores outside Finland has more than doubled, including flagship stores in New York City and Sydney, and several new markets haven been opened up in Asia.

Marimekko fashion has been prominently showcased in the international arena. The Tokyo, New York, Stockholm and Copenhagen Fashion Weeks have all seen premiere presentations of Marimekko collections. A true never-before-seen event was Marimekko’s fashion show in collaboration with the world-renowned Jin Xing Dance Theatre in Shanghai’s People’s Park in 2012.

Among new additions to the team of fashion designers are award-winning Satu Maaranen and Teemu Muurimäki whose Unikko (poppy) dresses created in celebration of the iconic pattern’s 50th anniversary were featured in a number of international fashion magazines.

Design collaboration with two famed international brands, Converse and Banana Republic, brought Marimekko high global visibility. In 2012, Marimekko and Finnair began a unique partnership: two Unikko-patterned aircraft fly from Helsinki to Finnair’s long-haul destinations, and passengers on all Finnair flights can enjoy textiles and tableware with Marimekko patterns.

The output capacity of the textile printing factory in Helsinki was tripled in 2011 with the acquisition of a new rotary printing machine.

In 2015, Tiina Alahuhta-Kasko and Mika Ihamuotila assumed joint responsibility for the running of the company. Tiina acts as the President and CEO and Mika as the Executive Chairman of the Board.

What is a Drapery Width?

What is a Width? This is how we measure the width of your draperies. Here’s more information on how to figure out what width you need.

You are online, ordering drapes and you hit a snag.  What is a “width”?  This is the question I am asked most often.  A width refers to the width of the fabric used to make a drape or curtain.  Usually, when you roll the fabric off a bolt, it is about 54″ wide.  1 width starts out at 54″ wide.  The sewing begins by gathering and tacking the pleat.  Then we create 1 1/2″ side hems with blind stitching.  Then we sew 3 1/2″ overlaps-you want the drapes to overlap in the center, so light does not shine through.

Drapes not wide enough, drapery rod too long.

DrapeStyle has this easy formula we use to determine width:

Length of drapery rod (in inches) + 16″ = X

X divided by the # of drapes = how many inches wide each drape should be.

Ask yourself how wide is your window?  Or better yet, how wide is the drapery rod you are going to hang your drapes on?  If your window is 48″ wide, you will probably want to extend the drapery rod at least 4″ on both sides of the window.  So your finish width is 56″.

Take the finished width, 56″, and add 16″ to account for hems and overlaps.  56″ plus 16″ equals 72″.

Take this number, 72″, and divide it by the number of drapes you would like.  Usually the number of drapes is 2.  So 72″ divided by 2 equals 36″. You want each drape to be at least 36″ wide.

Drapes not wide enough to completely cover window.

This will ensure that the drapes will have adequate coverage and it will be 2 times fullness.  Fullness refers to the additional fabric needed to make the pleats full and rich looking.  At DrapeStyle, we think that 2 times fullness looks great.  You want your drapes to look, full, luxurious, and rich looking.  Not wimpy, and you certainly want to be sure that the drapes are made wide enough to close.  After all, you paid for the drapes to block out light and add a little privacy, right?

We are here to help you figure out all of the details so that we can create your dream drapes!  Contact us and tell us your window measurements and we’ll do the rest.  DrapeStyle has been awarded the Best of Houzz Customer Satisfaction award, three years in a row.  We LOVE to help our customers create the perfect window treatments for their home.  We want you to be completely satisfied with your purchase.  DrapeStyle has been making custom drapesroman shades and pillows for over a decade, by women with an average of 25 years experience.  We think you’ll be pleased with the results.

Happy “Thread The Needle Day”

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Happy “Thread The Needle Day”.  Who knew there was such a thing, right?

Although the statement could have several meanings, I’ve decided to focus on the more literal meaning.  Today can be all about sewing or learning to sew.  I occasionally sew, and maybe this will be the push I need to finish some of the sewing projects I have started.  What about you?  Have you ever wanted to learn to sew?

Before investing in a good machine, it might be a good idea to take a few sewing classes at your local craft store.  This will give you a good idea of the time and patience you’ll need to take up sewing as a hobby.

Keep an open mind.  Know that learning anything new, takes time to master the task and get good at it.  When I was learning to sew, I can remember having to take my seam ripper to many projects because I sewed together the wrong pieces, or sewed on the wrong side, etc.  Practice, practice, practice.  You can inexpensively practice your sewing skills on thrift store sheets and bargain thread.  Start with simple projects so that you can fine tune your skills.  And if you have an experienced friend that you can go to for questions, that can be tremendously helpful.

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Make things you like.  If  you have a genuine interest in what you’re making, you’re more likely to stick with it.  When I started sewing, I had a cousin that was a toddler.  That poor kid had the cutest, silliest, outfits made for him.  His mother was kind enough to actually have him wear them (or at least long enough to take pictures and send them to me).  Those photos will be great for embarrassing him later in life.

Search the internet.  Pinterest and You Tube have great ideas and how to tutorials.  I always find visuals much more helpful than written instructions.

Now, if you find that your sewing skills aren’t up to par and you need a little assistance for your window treatment project, contact DrapeStyle.  We have been making custom Drapes, Roman Shades and Pillows since 2002.  Our seamstresses have an average of 25 years experience so you are sure to get premium products, quality craftsmanship and a great price.

How To Care For Your Drapes

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How should I care for my drapes?  This is a question I get asked quite frequently.

The best answer I can give is, “Let a professional take care of it”.  With each drapery order from DrapeStyle, you will receive instructions on how to care for your drapes.  You shouldn’t try to clean them yourself.  You do not want to launder, wash or dry clean your drapes. Typical household cleaners can permanently damage the fabric.  You should have your drapes professionally cleaned by a company that has experience with draperies.  Not every dry cleaner knows how to properly clean drapes, so do a little research and locate a drapery cleaner so that you can protect your beautiful investment.

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Vacuuming and dusting your draperies can help. Regular cleaning reduces the build up of allergens like dust mites, animal hair and dander, and may offer some relief to those with allergies or asthma.  If drapes are touched often, natural oils in the skin can leave residue that builds up and attracts further dust.  Without proper and regular cleaning, dusty and grimy window treatments begin to look dull and discolored, detracting from the beauty of the window or door that they cover.  Regularly cleaning your window treatments prolongs the life of fabrics and keeps colors from becoming dingy.

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Simply put; call a professional.  You don’t ever want to launder or scrub your drapes or roman shades.  The best way to care for your window treatments is to call a professional drapery cleaner who will take your window treatments down, remove the metal drapery hooks, have them dry-cleaned, reinstall the metal drapery hooks, and then return and re-hang for you.

Purchasing your drapes and roman shades from DrapeStyle is an investment.  And one of the best ways to maintain the look and feel of your window treatments is regular cleaning.  If you have any questions about how to maintain your window treatments, please contact us, and we would be happy to help you.

Relaxed Stone 2 Roman Shades
Pillow 11

Ideas for Dressing Tall Windows

It’s first thing in the morning, you pour yourself a cup of coffee, you turn around and who’s looking in your window staring you in the face?  Your neighbor.  Unless you don’t mind waving to your neighbor in your pajamas,  you need window treatments. But if you have tall windows, what options are there?

Tall, dramatic windows can offer spectacular views and add height to a room.  But covering them is a whole other story.

The first thing you need to ask yourself is, do I need privacy, or are these window treatments just going to be decorative?  If your neighbor is close enough to see what you are eating for dinner, then you probably want window treatments that offer privacy. If you need full coverage, from the top of the window to the bottom, then consider drapes with privacy lining.  DrapeStyle has the ability to make any length drape.  Select a decorative fabric that complements your room, then simply draw the drapes closed when privacy is needed.

Do you occasionally need the room darkened?  Roman shades with blackout lining are the answer. You can keep the shades raised most of the time for a more decorative look, and lower them when the time comes to enjoy a movie at home, or when the baby needs to take a nap.

Do your tall windows offer an incredible view that you don’t want to obstruct?  Consider adding sheers to your windows.  DrapeStyle carries sheers in several different colors, style and fabrics so you are sure to find one that works for you.  Sheers can add drama and softness to a room, without breaking the bank.  

Sheers

Whether you are looking for a classic sheer or something more modern, DrapeStyle has plenty of reasonably priced sheers to choose from.

Want to add a little color to your walls but keep your view?  Why not add long drapes to either side of the window?  A drape that is 1 or 2 widths wide might be just enough to add a little drama to your room.  You can add a decorator touch by using shorter drapery rods to hang your long drapes from.  DrapeStyle offers custom drapery hardware so you can order just the right size hardware, custom made for your windows.  And by using narrow drapes, you can save a little money.  Have you been eyeing a dramatic fabric but having it made into full width drapes might put you over your budget?  Decorative drapes are a great way to get that pop of color you want without breaking the bank.

If you really don’t want coverage but need protection from the sun, consider using UV window film on your windows.  It will cut down on glare and help protect your furnishings from the sun.

Want to add more drama to your tall windows?  Bring the attention up with a band of contrasting fabric towards the top of the drape.  Need to ground things a bit?  Bring the attention down by adding a band of fabric to the bottom of your drape and your space will feel more cozy.

Need a little help?  Feel free to contact us, we’re here to walk you through the process.  Drapes are an investment and we want you to be completely satisfied with your purchase.  DrapeStyle has been in business since 2002 and we know drapes and curtains.  Our seamstresses each have, on average, 25 years of experience.  No detail is overlooked.  Check out our commercial projects for more examples of extra long drapes.