Don’t Call Me A Hot Head – Curtains

Don’t Call Me A Hot Head – Curtains

Sometimes you want a break from quilting, and sometimes the sun kicking your butt makes you take a break from quilting to make insulated curtains for the office.

When I sit at my computer in the evening, the glorious sun shares it’s wealth of color and heat – right on top of my head. I think I can enjoy it, but after about 6 minutes, I feel like I am on fire, and it takes me about 30 minutes to cool down and feel right again. Last year, I am ashamed to say that I hung a towel over the lace curtain. It doesn’t cover the whole window, just the part where the sun heats up my head.
Last Christmas, on the Eve, in fact, my monitor died. At 4 pm. I remember this because I thought “I have 2 hours before the stores close” and ran out and bought a 32″ flat screen TV to hook up to my computer. It worked, but the other window behind me glared onto it, so that I had to hang a sheet over that lace curtain.
So now what we have is a trashy looking office, which simply won’t do for a person of my taste and creativity.
Enter Timeless Treasures Suffolk panel!

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I decided to get two of these and cut them in half. I am not a fan of black backgrounds on fabric, so I will add some more color to lighten it up. I added a wide strip of sky blue batik, and a narrow strip of lavender to build it out to the dimensions I require.
When I use quilters cotton for curtains, I place a layer of thick white felt behind it, because the sun will shine through it, and wash out the colors. Now, if these were going to be “black out” curtains, I would add a layer of black felt instead, but I actually want a bit of sunlight to show through.
Once I have these two layers done, I move on to the batting, and backing.

Office_Panel

Experience has shown that no matter what color you use on the back, it will fade to nearly white, so now I just use Kona white.
It so happened that I needed more Kona white to finish the second of the “Twin” quilts, so I bought extra.
While cutting the back of the panels, I used the selvage for the edge of the liner of the cut out and had some extra in between, so I cut strips for the quilt. If I didn’t have the selvage, I’d have to hem it – only as a fray check because it doesn’t show.

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Don’t forget to notch it.

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The cutout is turned out and top stitched.

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A scrap is added on top of the cutout to finish the edges when it is sewn together.

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Before sewing all the layers together, you want to sew  the batting to the backing [about 6 inches] where you will leave it open to turn it out. You be glad you did when you go to hand sew it closed.

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After it is sewn and turned right sides out,  I usually stitch right at bottom of the cutout, but that stitch placement didn’t look good on the front.

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I use number 4 thick poly batting for the middle, and I quilt it according to what looks good on the front – not what the manufacturor says.

They are 27″W x 29″L and quite poofy!

I did not quilt these more because every stitch that has the sun behind it will show as points of light. You can see a bit of that in the Bedroom Curtains I made. If the curtain was bigger, I could have quilted the batting to the backing before sewing the front on to avoid the light comming through the stitches. These are small, and I will hand or gentle cycle wash them.

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The front

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Now when I go in the office, I am greeted by the amazing glow of big beautiful flowers.

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Both of these pictures were taken on a sunny afternoon. Above with lights on, and below with lights off.

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Good bye Hot head! Now I can get back to quilting.

#InsulatedCurtains #WindowTreatments #DontCallMeAHotHead #SunIsNotKickingMyButt #Ahhhhhh

Steps to Perfection #1 Procrastination works

Steps to Perfection #1 Procrastination works

We bought this place 3 years ago in the late fall, and I planned on making curtains for every window. As it turned out, other things demanded our imediate attention. Like heat. but that’s another story, so I hung blankets in the windows, and took care of other things. I always had the design in my head, which I altered, and re altered many times. Last summer, while trying to sleep with the windows open and one fan blowing in and the other fan sucking out, it hit me that it was too darn light in here.  If I had made those pairs of curtains half and half to match the glass, I would still have too much light in the room! Thank God I had procrastinated!

In actuality, I had sewing issues soon after moving in. The best area to cut or sew in had either no light or too much light during the time I was home to do it. So first I had to make curtains to block the light out of my eyes where I’d be sewing in the evening, and then, find a way to light up where I’d be cutting. and that’s why it took so long to get to these bedroom curtains. Life is like a puzzle sometimes. You have to put one piece in place before the others will fall in.

So what some call procrastination, I call “planning”

Problems to solve in this room: Too hot and too light  in summer at 8pm when I go to bed, and  too cold in winter due to having only one heat vent.
So that means I want room darkening, plus very thick. Yet another Job for my Viking Husqarna with low gear to punch through all the layers. Now, I already have window treatments, so these will fit inside the window frames, under the other treatments. Both windows are the same size, but one has blinds, and one has oversized drapes to effectively “move” the window to center it behind the bed. Each window will have a 20″ fan in it during the summer.

Now that you know how I got there, here are the curtains I ended up with. Notice the 60/40 split for the window fan.

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I wanted a clean look on this wall, hence the neutral upholstery fabric. Above is with blinds open, below is with them closed.  I can still add a valence after I reupholster the one armed couch – yet another project – which will go below this window.

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Here is the window with fan installed, and one side rolled up.

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How they are hanging. I used 1 1/4″ wood closet rods, because the curtains are heavy, and those handy “Cup Style” rod holders, which is 2 plastic end caps, one of which has a cut out to slide the rod in. This open cup also spins, so you can simply turn it to be open at the top once the rod is in place, to lock it in.

 

 

The layers: Upolstery fabric [faces inside room], cheap dark grey blanket, thick [1/2″ to 3/4″] quilt batting, and med to heavy high thread count cotton for the back.

To make the rod pocket and maintain the desired overlap without bunching, I added a strip of fabric with a cutout on each side.

 

 

I made the finished size 1″ bigger on all 4 sides so they will overlap against each other and the frame. The seams are 3/4″ to create fullness, and they are sewn pillowcase style, and turned right sides out through as small an opening as I can stand to hand sew afterwards. Painters tape works well for the quilting when you don’t want to mark the fabric. Just stick it down, pin it in a couple of places, sew next to it, and then pull it off.

 

 

The first step to perfection is procrastination! Brought to you by Viking 21a and me.

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#InsulatedCurtains #WindowTreatments #DontCallMeAHotHead #SunIsNotKickingMyButt #Ahhhhhh