Thursday, March 26, 2009

DETOUR!

I have taken a quilting detour into the home decorating world. There is a very good chance that we will be having a house full of company in the near future and company is exactly what I need to force me into finishing the valance for the window above my kitchen sink. The painting and wallpaper were completed last fall; months after the new kitchen counters started this long drawn out project. (How DO those home improvement shows manage to get everything done in 24 hours?) Now the only thing left is the window treatment. Nothing spurs me into action like a deadline!

This whole project will probably take less than an hour. This is my Easy Reversible Valance. We have a laminated card with the step-by-step instructions, but here is a quick overview.

First you have to select 2 fabrics. My “new” kitchen is red and tan. These photos are of the demonstration pieces that I keep at the shop. The violets are leftover pieces from my oldest daughter’s bedroom – 10 years ago!

The instruction card gives you measuring details so that you can calculate the yardage. It is a simple formula. You fill the measurements into the blanks in the formula and follow the calculations to determine the yardage.

Step one is to sew the two identically sized pieces of fabric together to make a long tube. You may be able to see that I serged these pieces. I own a serger, why not use it? If you don’t own one, a simple seam works just as well. A quarter inch seam allowance would be great, but not necessary.

Once the long seams are done, fold about (and I do mean “about”) an inch of fabric toward the inside and press. If you are hard-core you can stitch these “hems” in place, but I have to confess that I never do. Who’s going look?

Now use your ruler and marking pencil to measure 3 inches from one seam line. I will be using my new fancy schmancy Sewline marking pencil that I LOVE. Roll the fabric tube and press a new fold directly on that line. This will expose 3 inches of fabric A on the B side and 3” of fabric B on the A side.

Now you have some decisions to make. Your valance can be hung in any of 4 ways. You have 2 options with the contrasting color at the top and two options with the contrasting color at the bottom. You also have to decide if you want the rod inserted at the top of the valance or if you prefer a 3 inch ruffle at the top. It probably took more time to create the handy-dandy video at the bottom of this post to show you the options than it will to make the enitre valance!

The only thing left to do is stitch in the casing lines, insert the rod and hang it in place. Ill post a photo of mine as soon as it is installed. That might be several days from now and about 15 minutes before company arrives!
video

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