Well, what do you think? I was so dreading this project because of the sheer size of it and the amount of fabric and the stripes! I have no idea how to make drapes! But they turned out reasonably well, if I may say so myself. I’m pleased with how they look, and I must confess that I really enjoyed putting these together. All the hand sewing that went into this project was calming, and I looked forward to the times where I could just sit on the floor with the panels spread out over my lap and sew each step. I so loved the hand sewing. And why did I choose to sew these by hand instead of by machine?
Well, because I trust my pinning and hand sewing results more than I do fighting with 13 yards of heavy upholstery-weight fabric through a machine that wasn’t really made for industrial type sewing. I can pin and hand stitch a long hem with the confidence that it will be perfectly straight. I wasn’t convinced it would be successful with my Babylock Crafter’s Choice machine. And I didn’t want to rip out and re-sew mistakes.
And I could sew invisibly along the hemline and heading without fighting with an automated blind stitch. This project was a good reminder of what I like about sewing, and why I like it: hand sewing is precise, clean, calming and, for me, a great stress relief. I guess that’s why I used to spend so many hours smocking when my girls were little. That quiet time sitting down with needle, thread and fabric was a haven at the end of such busy days.
I confess my main reason for making these myself was the savings on the labour costs, similar to why I made my own interlined roman blinds a while ago. After these projects, I’ll not complain when I get crazy quotes, as I have a first-hand understanding of what exactly goes into making custom window coverings.
Well, for now, I guess it’s back to garment sewing for a while. There’s no other home dec projects in my future. Well, actually, there is one that’s percolating on the back burner in my mind. Initially, the living room drapes were to be of this gorgeous linen/silk/cotton fabric (called “Epoque”) from French decor company Nobilis. Unfortunately, the only importer in Canada doesn’t carry it anymore. And therein lies the problem. I can’t get it anymore if I don’t order 120 yards because it’s out of production. Um. Well, as gorgeous as it is, I will never need 120 yards of this fabric. I wish I did, but I don’t.I have tried to source something similar, but cannot find anything in this particular sage green-orchid combination. I’m thinking of trying to replicate it via hand printing on a similar plain background.