How to Pre-Line a Cornice
Using Professional Photography
Would Someone Hold me Accountable?
Create an Inspection Machine
M'Fay Inspired Headboards
Would Someone Hold Me Accountable?
Every year at this time my phone rings and my email lights up with people calling and reaching out for help in creating goals and strategy or in meeting their existing goals and strategy. Know how I can tell who has a good shot at making it and who might struggle?
Those with an Accountability Plan.
It is not the ones with the most money to invest or most education. It is the ones who have a consistent accountability plan. What is that? An accountability plan is a decision to share your goals in detail with another person – and then have that person follow up and hold you accountable for completing them.
An accountability partner can be a spouse, friend, or peer. It can also be a coach or a mentor. Studies show that when you create goals and write them down and have someone hold you accountable that you are 95% more likely to complete the task? Conversely, if you just decide to adopt an idea/goal, you are only 25% likely to do it. The difference in the percentage of attainability is the creation of the detailed plan, acting on it, sharing it and being accountable.
Here are a few guidelines to use when choosing an accountability partner:
Be ready to take responsibility. Responsibility for your thoughts, actions, motivations, character as well as inaction. No finger pointing, no whining or blaming. Own your part in your life and business and hold your partner to the same.
Create trust in the relationship. This relationship is raw and honest. It should be supportive and covered with integrity. It is worth taking the time to vet the person you will be sharing with and who will be sharing with you.
This relationship should be challenging not condemning. Holding you accountable with compassion is necessary.
Clear expectation setting and goals will make this work. Just getting together to chat – not so much. It is easy to go off of the rails without a plan. Having 2-3 questions to cover each meeting with a defined time to spend on each of your businesses is critical. Staying focused and on task will make this work.
Your partner does not have to be your friend (or spouse). Make sure you are both determined, dedicated and dependable about meeting. Often a friend will be much more lenient and find holding you accountable difficult. Consider asking another business person outside of your industry or someone who is not your best buddy.
You can have more than one accountability partner. Maybe you need one for your overall business or one for a single aspect of your business. Don't overdo it but think about what goals you really need to meet and who is best to get you there.
Coaching is one aspect of being an accountability partner. Personally, I have my own business coach and a peer accountability partner. Both help me, focus me, push me and encourage me. I could not do it with just one of them. I meet twice a month with my coach and once a month in general with my accountability partner. Define what works for you – and get some assistance. No need to do this all alone. If you want to discuss coaching, reach out to me at Michele@ScarletThreadConsulting.com. I would love to chat!
Michele Williams is the owner of The Scarlet Thread, LLC and is a strategic business coach. With a degree from The University of South Carolina in Management Information Systems and Administrative Management, Michele has combined her love of creativity and textiles with the nitty-gritty of business management to help other creatives learn the technical and financial sides of business. Michele has a degree in Coaching and is a Profit First Certified Coach. She is the past president of the national WCAA and a member of the Atlanta and Virtual chapters of WCAA. Michele is also a member of WFCP, Design Collective, and Designers' Workroom Council.
Michele is fiercely committed to guiding creative business owners in the understanding of complex business concepts and processes in a simplified way. She strives to help them be profitable which allows for a healthier work-life balance. For more information go to www.scarletthreadconsulting.com.
Annie Davis is the owner of AL Designs, originally founded in 2000 as a to the trade drapery workroom. She provides window treatments, bedding and other soft goods for designers in the Omaha, Nebraska area. She is now focusing on education to others within the industry as well as teaching basic sewing and quilting skills to those with the desire to learn.
How to Pre-Line a Cornice
by Annie Davis
Cornices are my favorite window treatment to fabricate, and over time I have found certain methods that I like to use. When building cornices, I have made it a practice to pre-line the back side of the cornice. This method not only looks great but is also a big time-saver.
I prefer to use Thermal Suede lining; it is opaque, and therefore covers anything that you don't want to show through. This lining also has enough stretch to it, which allows you to pull it taut for a nice tight finish. I only cover the back side of the face board and underneath the dustcover with lining. The remainder of the cornice is covered with face fabric including the inside of the legs.
Scroll through the slideshow below for a brief pictorial as to how I pre-line my cornices.
As soon as my boards are cut, I cover them with lining. I cut my lining a few inches bigger than my boards and then just stretch out the lining and staple it down. I staple to the edge of the board. I have never had a problem with staples coming loose in the plywood, and they don't get in the way when stapling the fabric in place. Another benefit to stapling on the edge is that I don't have to keep flipping my boards around while trying to hold the lining taut and stapling "over to the other side." The extra lining is used to hang onto, and when everything is done, I can just slide my scissors next to the staples and trim off the excess.
At this point, the cornice gets nailed together and covered as usual. I love the way that the finished product looks and even though I was resistant to pre-lining when I first heard about it, I'm so glad that gave it a try!
Drapery & Design Network Members - Annie will have a webinar on this technique uploaded to the network in mid-March. Click here to login: draperyanddesign.com
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Drapery & Design Professional Magazine Volume 2014, Issue 2
Blast from the Past
This Technique "Seams" Perfect!
Jean W. Laws
Good grief! My high school English teacher, Mrs. June Atkin, is probably cringing at the lack of a proper adverb! But, who doesn't like a play on words?
In an educator's dream, we commit their lessons to our permanent memory bank; some lessons stick more easily than others, though. Government and Politics, for example. (Ugh.) If you are a visual learner, like me, the demonstration of a useful technique is pure golden goodness. Ann K. Johnson teaches this great technique for matching patterns, and it is so satisfying! A versatile method, it is especially handy for long drapery panel seams, as the stitching line virtually disappears when the drapery is hanging.This week, I've been working on a houndstooth weave which is a prime example of this technique. (Spoiler alert — no pins to stab you with this method!)
Fold under the seam allowance on one selvage edge of a cut width of fabric, matching the pattern design to the second cut width; press fold.
With right sides of both widths facing up, lay the folded edge width on top of the other width; line-up the pattern to match.
Carefully straight stitch on top of the fabric right next to the fold (see photos below), with a medium-long stitch, matching the pattern perfectly as you go. It may be slow going at first, but you'll get the hang of it!
OPTIONAL: I like to serge off the seam allowances underneath when finished. Of course, that last step comes only after I admire my beautiful pattern match, pat myself on the back, and sing my teacher's praises!
Note: The Sewing Gods are happiest when you sew from bottom to top. I have "cheated" and gone in the other direction when the largest width of material is too bulky to slide through the machine to the right of the needle.
Jean W Lawes is the owner of HomeStyle Custom Workroom and is dedicated to the fabrication of custom soft home furnishings products including window treatments, cushions, pillows, bedding, bath accessories, and tabletop items for the Interior Design trade. Careful attention to detail, valuable sewing and design experience, personal integrity, and superior customer service are used in combination to guarantee fine custom quality.
State of the art fabrication equipment as well as premium linings, interlinings, and supplies are used to create long-lasting, beautifully-constructed products, worthy of customer investment. Jean takes advantage of any educational opportunities she can to maintain gold standard practices in the fabrication and design process.
Proud Member of WCAA National, Maryland, and South Eastern Pennsylvania Chapters, as well as the Drapery & Design Professional Network. www.HomeStyleWorkroom.com
SINGLE-PIECE CONSTRUCTION (featured in
SINGLE-PIECE CONSTRUCTION (featured in M'Fay Pattern 9321)
Single-piece headboards are typically constructed with one sheet of ½" or thicker plywood or particle board.
HOLLOW-BACK CONSTRUCTION (instructions detailed in M'Fay Pattern 9322)
Hollow-back headboards can appear to be much more substantial than headboards made from single sheets of plywood. They are typically constructed with 1"x 4" or 2" x 4" lumber across the top and sides and 1" x 2" or 2" x 2" lumber to support the center and base. Plywood is secured to this frame and fabric covers to the back. The hollow back can be finished with cambric, as one would upholster the underside of a sofa or chair.
SOLID-BACK CONSTRUCTION (instructions detailed in M'Fay Pattern 9323)
Solid-back headboards are typically constructed with a ¼" or 3/8" plywood face and back with 1"x 2", 2" x 2", and/or 2" x 4" lumber sandwiched in between.
UPHOLSTERED HEADBOARDS WORKSHOP
the ultimate CRASH COURSE for custom headboard fabrication
March 18-19, 2017
Instructor: Cathy Tucker
This Workshop is hosted by Adaptive Textiles in West Chester, PA, and will include comprehensive hands-on training, use of tools, hardware and multiple examples of headboard fabrication. Sandwich and salad lunch provided on both days.
Students learn recommended techniques for upholstered headboard construction while building two headboard samples for themselves that will be suitable for showroom display. Students are encouraged to think creatively as they design and plan the frame construction, fabric selection, pattern placement, and embellishment options.
Do you love Cathy Tucker? We sure do! Join her for a headboard design seminar at the March Southeastern PA WCAA meeting (the day before the hands-on WORKSHOP at Adaptive Textiles).
Contact Jennifer DeRosa for meeting details.
Jeanelle Dech is president and co-founder of Adaptive Textiles, an innovative textile printing company in West Chester, PA. She is a friendly and engaging speaker, known for her Fit-Like-a-Glove slipcovers, SPEED sewing method, and workroom profitability and management training. She has served as an officer and national board member of WCAA. In 2015, she launched The Workroom Channel, which hosts a series of online training programs and hands-on events for sewing professionals. Just this year, Jeanelle added pattern printing to the repertoire. Adaptive Textiles is now the proud parent company to both, M'Fay Patterns and The Workroom Channel.
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My Designer Concierge understands that operating a small business is challenging and we are here to help. We have accounts with almost 100 leading vendors in the soft furnishings industry to make ordering easier while saving you time and money.
With your yearly membership, you can take advantage of all our vendor accounts, saving you hundreds each year. Join now!
It is our goal to help you grow your business. We also offer several services you can take advantage of should you need a little assistance, but do not want to go through the hassle of hiring an employee. We are here to help you succeed, just “call the concierge!”
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by Liz Hawkes
Create an Inspection Machine
Commercial inspection machines can be very expensive, and not all workrooms can afford such a luxury. I have discovered a quick and easy way to inspect your fabrics at a small fraction of the cost with a few common tools and supplies:
fabric rack that holds multiple rolls of fabric
two widths of conduit to hold bolts of fabric
wide piece of plywood (if your rack is against a wall you can omit)
fluorescent light that can be plugged into a wall outlet
drill and screws to mount the light on the plywood/wall
Browse the slideshow to the right to see my inspection machine in action!
Pull the fabric down towards your worktable and behind the conduit.
Turn the light on and inspect the fabric while advancing through the glow of the light and re-roll as necessary once the inspection has been completed.
(Helpful tip- use a clamp or other tool to hold bottom conduit in place.)
Liz Hawkes has owned and operated Windows by Liz since 2005. Windows by Liz is an award-winning custom curtain studio located in Harvard, MA. Liz works with both homeowners and interior design professionals to create unique window treatments and soft furnishings. Liz holds a bachelor's degree in Home Economics from Sheffield Hallam University in the U.K. She believes in the value of continuing education, regularly attends conferences, classes and seminars and is an alumnus of the Custom Home Furnishings Academy. In 2006 Liz earned the Certified Workroom Professional designation from WCAA. Liz has been an active member of the WCAA since 2005. She has served as Vice President and Treasurer for the Eastern MA chapter and is currently Vice President of the National WCAA Board.
Create an Inspection Machine
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My Designer Concierge
The Drapery & Design Digital Digest is a collaborative effort between the Curtains & Soft Furnishings Resource Library and My Designer Concierge. Together, our mission is to showcase the outstanding work of custom home furnishings professionals, spotlight quality products, and share educational resources.
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Jeanelle Dech, Founder
Curtains & Soft Furnishings Resource Library