Friday, December 30, 2005
Good morning. It is cold and rainy here in the Pacific Northwest. Almost done with the new Slipcover Press for Winter 2006, should be sent your way quickly.
Above is a photo that was sent to me by Jolene Weave in VA.... Richmond. She has great ways that she finished her chairs besides stapling and velcour. How about the rest of you? Ideas to share.
In the New Slipcover Press we want more sharing to go on within our trade. Share it first here on the blog, and then we can put it in print. Currently our Slipcover Press Subscriber list is 300 and that is online......
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
Saturday, December 03, 2005
The Seattle Times: Home & Garden: Time to try a tighter, trendier slipcover
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Some of you should be getting an auto response about the Slipcover Press. I am not doing a Fall issue as I have been trying to figure out a program to have this up online.
Automation is the only way to keep up with the Slipcover Press. If you would like your quarterly publication mail USPS mail.... I need to know.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
On another note, I am using the first couple weeks of january to get together picture series for discs for the summit.
If there's something you want to see I can slip it in there now.
might as well ask here.............
Monday, November 21, 2005
Saturday, November 19, 2005
Friday, November 18, 2005
for the effort of having a muslin pattern made ahead of time ( which serves at estimate time for a closer number and allows the half deposit to be demanded at that time anyway.....)
you can have a glue basted ( think many fewer pins and no time hunting for a way to insert them while avoiding the chair ) RS out fully fitted cover, lined and even stuffed ala the Maureen Whitmore craze ( but we can skip that too ).
Measurements can be substituted for the muslin in some cases, but a good premade muslin pattern serves so many good uses, and many people make them already.
General idea : the outside body pieces are steamed, cut to size, corded and lined. They look pillow cased when done, they are separate, not joined to anything. They are overlocked at the skirt line, and are longer than needed.
The inside body pieces are steamed, lined, assembled to other inside body pieces. They are cut to size but left long to underlap the outside body pieces.
The outside body pieces are prepared with Rowley's fuseable web, 2" on the lining side, and pressed with release silicone paper. Outside body pieces are ready to fuse when positioned.
Inside body pieces are positioned ( already joined, lined, overlocked ) pinned into the chair so as to make as tight as desired and overlapped into what would be the areas covered by outside body pieces....O back, arm front panels, O arm, De fronts, DE side panels, O wings if any, O side panels if any.
The outside body pieces are applied positioned, tightened, pinned, and fused. Skirt line cord is fused at this time as well, ready to receive the skirt once stitched.
Stittching is done from the front.
Lining used can be cheap and removed ( with the fuseable ) as soon as no longer needed, or kept as part of finished product.
Weird, no ? Fun for me, I like fun. Wicked fun, I have been waiting to glue a slipcover all my life.....
Monday, November 14, 2005
Gonna start banding slipcover skirts, I certainly have it down now. Banded $11,000 worth of drapes this year, more coming in the door. Jeezzzzz
Fantasizing about glue basting slipcovers. Anyone who wants to receive and help critique photos depicting BROWN the week of jan 9th as they are put on a disc with paragraphs explaining Brown, let me know.
slipcoverlady at juno dot com.
Saturday, November 05, 2005
I'm going to approach them *eek!* - if we work something out, is there a payment standard?
1. They refer customers to me, I pay them a commission (__%). (What IS the going rate, anyway?)
2. I bill the store, they charge customers whatever they want. They may or may not want to deal with fabric, not sure how that would work either way.
Any experience with this? Anyone?
Thursday, October 27, 2005
FYI...October Issue of Architectural Digest...we did the swags in the 6000 sq. ft. library addition...designer was John Phiffer Marrs
Page 146 has a photo of the window treatments we fabricated.
Dallas, Texas 75243
Take a look.
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Question 2. How do the scallops meet in the corners? I am planning to have a scallop panel for each of the four sides.
Question 3. I have installed casters on the chair. How long do I make the skirt? Just to the top of the casters?
Thursday, October 13, 2005
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
b) Always - it is built into my price.
c) As an option (with upcharge) only.
2. If you DO serge, do you:
a) Serge completed seams (requires industrial serger).
b) Serge pieces before stitching.
c) Serge as slipcover is sewn (Karen's Method)
Monday, October 03, 2005
Over the past decade, we as a group have rallied to help some of our members with some extraordinary life events. I am asking for your help once again--this time for
Jo Ann Brezette, one of the Window Coverings Industry's most valued members. I know many of you do both window treatments and and slipcovers.
She has recently been declared legally blind and is facing increased medical expenses associated with attempts to save the little sight Jo Ann does have. Read more about Jo Ann's medical condition and how you can easily contribute. http://www.jbmedicalfund.com/
Steve Beard, of Wesco Fabrics, Inc. sent me this information, and I am happy to pass this request along. You are welcome to forward this to any of your friends and business associates. (In fact please do !!)
I know in the past you have all opened up your hearts and have contributed so generously. I do hope you can help today.
Thank you so very much!
27281 Las Nieves
Mission Viejo, CA 92691
949-916-9374FAX www.DraperyPro.com DianGar@aol.com
Sunday, October 02, 2005
Thursday, September 29, 2005
Friday, September 23, 2005
Just wanted you to know I just sent in another shipment of recycle in cartridges and cell phones. Thanks to all who are making it possible to grow our Scholarship fund for the Summit 2006.
It's easy save your empty cartridges, and when you get 3 send them my way. I send them to the company, and they send a check to Claudia who is our treasurer.
Hope all are well
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
Sustainable, minimal-impact, environmentally conscious, eco-responsibe interior fabric.
In other words... recycled (and recyclable).
Is this one of the companies Jeannie highlighted? Or did I just volunteer to write an article? :D
Saturday, September 10, 2005
lining slipcovers...either married to the cover, independednt and between furniture and cover, or attached to furniture....
additionally, what do you say to yourself when looking at a situation that you jus' know the fabric isn't going to hide what's going on ? What's the self talk you do in planning ?
Shirley we could open up the blog to all and have the discussion here online...
What do you think?
Karen, tell me the impressions you get from others about if the appearance is acceptable.
Karen, where can we post a discussion or a back ground article ( maybe on the Summit advertisment ? ) on lining. As you can probably tell, I am so excited about lining, this is an issue I can really run with.
Friday, September 09, 2005
I have a lot of samples to test; I'll throw it in with them, but this won't happen until October.
I agree with the fiberglass comparison.
Thursday, September 08, 2005
Wednesday, September 07, 2005
Tuesday, September 06, 2005
I am still tinkering with how to do it under pressure ( six students, three chairs, six hours ). So, glue sounds really appealing to me~
I am beginning to think I need to know the chairs prior to arriving at the summit. They can ( and should ) be three different models, but perhaps they should be Claudia's childs furniture.
most important thing to me originally was stepping beyond pinning RS out on the whole chair, fitting while incorporating cord. Those two common beginning methods I felt needed a bridge over to double on half. Yes, this is then a hybrid.
I like to think Brown ( hybrid, maybe RAINBOW ! ) has even more uses than just serving as a stepping stone between beginners methods and double on half. I never know where ideas come to me from, no doubt seen or heard and then the original source forgotten.
Any ideas on using glue more often in slipcovers ? My nagging thought has been protecting the chair, and then not glueing pins in so they don't come out ever.
As ever, still thinkin'.
Now I wish I had given you an article on lining, we can do that for winter.
Monday, September 05, 2005
As for the undergarment on the back of the chair
I used drapery interlining, to cover the inside and
outside back. I sew the back to the front and slip it on
over the back of the chair.
I prefer to use interlining as it grips the chair with
it's felt like coating, and also helps the slipcover
fabric to grip to the interlining.
Sunday, September 04, 2005
Other than gas lines and empty grocery store shelves, all is well.
Saturday, September 03, 2005
Thursday, September 01, 2005
Judit knows Kim from WCAA. I didn't actually speak to Judit, I managed to get a connection, and she has changed her outgoing cell message to assure everyone she is fine if without power or a land line.
Because she's near Baton Rouge, and all the evacuation activity comes out of Baton Rouge, the cell system is just overloaded.
Monday, August 29, 2005
I heard from Judit late last night. They have generators, and John built the house himself, it can withstand nuclear war ( I've seen it ). Judit turned off the computer, but I will let you know if she calls.
Judit is in Walker, just east of Baton Rouge, 110 miles NWW of New Orleans.
Friday, August 26, 2005
for those of you expecting the poly canvas, it just hasn't left here yet..................
Thursday, August 25, 2005
I have some ideas on marketing, but I haven't pursued them yet because I can't seem to get ahead enough to take on even more work. (I think I've sung this song one too many times so I should shut up!)
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Thursday, August 18, 2005
Our first batch of empty ink cartridges went into the center to be recycled. Funds will be deposited into the Slipcover Summit Scholarship fund. So if you aren't already recycling your empty ink cartridges, start now. Save them and mail them to us at the Slipcover Network... 8118 Skipley Rd Snohomish, Wa 98290
Help someone learn new skills that will help their slipcover business be more professional.
Sunday, August 14, 2005
Saturday, August 13, 2005
Friday, August 12, 2005
I sent Lisa a PM on the in house system on the other place. It locked out direct email. I asked her to email Karen......
Thursday, August 11, 2005
the washer repair man has Gerry thinkin' the front loader is the cat's pajamas.
I would have done the laundry mat route with this months lot (200 plus yards ) except that's it's humid, air quality is in the sucky zone, and I again have bronchitis. Add to that the dust of a laundry mat and the result might be comical. Imagine me on the floor coughing now....
That will be the answer in the fall, and I will just go to the laundry mat and wash stuff I may need in advance, only when the weather is right to breathe.
Washed fabric does sell itself, in a Frankenstein kind of way. I knew from past years people will order white in july, just when they cannot possibly still get it in time for summer.
I had a front loader and right away I noticed that the washer
did not wash fabric the way I needed it too. Front loaders are
designed to used less water and water is the key to washing
the fabric that we use. It needs to be soaked in water, lots of water
and the front loader was designed for saving energy.
So... I take my fabric, when it needs to be washed to the laundry
and wash it in the big boy. These are front loaders but have much
more water. It does work. Also takes less time, and less energy
in my place.
Does anyone wash this canvas ( any canvas ) in a front loader ? Does it come out right ?
Wednesday, August 10, 2005
If you have done your testing with the fabric and you know how it will shrink then cutting pieces sounds okay.
Or you can plan for 2 or 3 pieces in each cut. So you can was cuts of fabric but know what you how many
finished seats or backs you will get our of each cu.
Do I make sense?
the only hitch in this: holes open up in the washer on some fabrics.
See what shrinkage you can get by the washing method ( your usual ) with a small enough piece. Then, perhaps run a different test with a fresh piece to compare: soak in hot 20 minutes, then dry in hot, maybe more than once. Aggitate, just don't add soap.
Between the recoverable stretch and the shrinkage you DID get ( on the no soap test ) , and leaving them a tad bigger, you may be covered for all the allowance you'd need.
This is far preferable than discovering ( having washed with soap ) that picks open up ( holes where threads are joined in weaving ) and be short, having dedicated the positions of cuts, and nothing is then repositionable.
The CRDaniels is good for just one thing, no holes, ever. All other COM, I never use soap unless I have tons extra.
Any thoughts? The other thing I could do is identify where I could safely cut, instead of just go for 3-yard cuts.
Tuesday, August 09, 2005
The web that Rowley sells is easy to control. Makes me want to somehow work it into Brown.....
Monday, August 08, 2005
firstname.lastname@example.org it's white, clean, canvas texure, a tad shiny, heavy weight and a very tempting price. Maybe one day I can get it dyed beige as well. As of now, it only comes white.
maybe you can identify for me where else you have seen it, perhaps dyed already...........
Friday, August 05, 2005
One thing, the clothing can sometimes be revealing and be desired. Slipcovers aren't revealing, they are the opposite, they hide absolutely ( when done well ).
We could call it Hysewocprknbon but we'd still be stuck explaining it. Was lookin' for something aha! kinda more self explanatory.........
another endless quest..................
what if you start from the perspective of the furniture and how a slipcover enhances its beauty while hiding its faults. (like good clothing does--???---)
I don't think this is what you are looking for for an answer, but maybe it will generate a few more creative synapes.
it appears to float on air. There are no reminders of the shape, color or detail of the upholstered piece beneath.
there is no struggle between the slipcover and the furniture wearing it. It's restful and relaxing to look at, there's nothing to tinker with or fix.
Fill in the blank. I'd love to have something unique or succinct. Maybe it cannot be short.
Thursday, August 04, 2005
It could be the button depressions, a vague emptiness or hollow over a concave area that changes the color or surface appearance. " Innies "
It could be the cord of the upholsterers work that is rigid and leaving a bump. " Outties "
It could be the contour that the slipcover cannot adhere to, the the difference, for example, a serpentine deck front, you can just " see " it underneath.
For that matter, arm pits that scream at you that it's isn't sticking like paint.
Can we size this up in one phrase or word, the absence of all the things that a slipcover look less than sucessful ? Can we find a word that says what the most sucessful slipcover does ?
( without my usual circular uneditted encyclopeadia answers ).
Shirley when you write "When a slipcover fails to hide the furniture underneath" are you meaning that the slipcover does not cover the furniture or that the fabric color underneathe is bleeding though?
Just trying to understand what you mean..
When a slipcover fails to hide the furniture underneath....what do YOU call this ?
Does coverage ( as bland and non descript as that is ) say it all, or does some phrase size it up better ?
What phrase says " good coverage ". I don't know one, that's why I am asking you all. I know what I want: the slipcover floats so well, it does not look supported by anything but air.
It's easy to say what's missing when it's right. It's not wrinkled, not bumpy underneath, doesn't beg the question " what's under there ? ". Worse, it's so obvious you don't have to ask~ hey! That's blue under there !
I am trying to wrap it all in one, but if you have a system of saying it differently, spill.
Tuesday, August 02, 2005
Monday, August 01, 2005
The euro pro was old, and is off at a local appliance place to get a look see. I ordered new as well, they are half what they were before.
Karen, nice to hear you are up and around, to say the least. Is St. Loius hot ?
I am not sure recycling is a word I should borrow for what I do with left over cottons, but if you have any, I can put them to good use. I wash them, bleach them if I can, and make them all scrunchy and friendly. See if you can dig any out of your stash of leftovers, natural color is the best to bleach up. Email me if you have any to sacrifice. It will do good.
Sunday, July 31, 2005
Donna and I are back from Tn, where we did
the American Sewing Guild Conference show.
3 days of teaching and exhibit floor. We meet
all sorts of neat ladies, who of course sew. Some
who are in business sewing home dec and they are
wanting education. Many want to know how to sew
Shirley I am sure that no one fixes your Euro Iron
are you under warrantee? HOw old is it?
okay... back to work. Need to get my quarterly taxes
in the mail.
Karen in St Lous but wanting to be home
in the great Northwest
Donna and I are back from Tn, where we did
the American Sewing Guild Conference show.
3 days of teaching and exhibit floor. We meet
all sorts of neat ladies, who of course sew. Some
who are in business sewing home dec and they are
wanting education. Many want to know how to sew
Shirley I am sure that no one fixes your Euro Iron
are you under warrantee? HOw old is it?
okay... back to work. Need to get my quarterly taxes
in the mail.
Karen in St Lous but wanting to be home
in the great Northwest
Friday, July 29, 2005
Thursday, July 28, 2005
Brown : bring yourself and your worst chair. Northern Va, email me, email@example.com
Stuffing slipcovers, lining, new excuses for slipcover underwear. Tell me what you do, same address as above.
Poly slipcovers. UGH. Let's swap samples.
Recreating cotton scraps, send me some swatches of what you can't get rid of, we'll talk.
Wednesday, July 27, 2005
It's drapeable for it's bulk, there does not seem to be anything to wash out.
It's not yet cut off bolt.
First I have 80 yards bias banding to make for drape job. Why do I do THAT ?
Speaking of which, europro iron decided to sit down on the job. Bought it used, don't know origin. Who fixes these ?
I'll send it out to you jeannie.
Why did you get 100 yards? I don't know anything about poly. Do you expect it not to shrink? Does it not have sizing in it? Can you think of any advantages over cotton other than the bleach and ammonia washes? If you have scissors in hand, you could send me a snip. Jeannie
3507 W. Cornwallis Rd.
Durham, NC 27705
I am proud to have slipcovers connected to the idea of simple living and conservation, but it's relative.
Even if we do buy fabric that's from another country, we have not created quite as much trash as an upholsterer. We haven't created excess numbers of baggy covers to sit on the shelf and wait for end users. We don't create covers that must occupy space in a truck or shipping container.
Why don't I send out a smaller swatch for those who are interested ? With a 37 cents stamp ? Or is it 38 now ?
All poly canvas does work for some occasions.
I don't think that poly canvas is evil... (LOL)
Some poly products are being made from recycled
products. The thought is to look at oil and how it
is being used. So much of our industry is reliant
on oil. How can this be?
What do we know about having all of our eggs in
one basket? When something happens to the eggs
the next is empty.
Diversity is idea. Use more than one thing.
Does CRDaniels manufacture this poly canvas fabric
in the USA or does it come from China? Just checking?
Smiles to you this day
Tuesday, July 26, 2005
anybody want to experiment with some? I will cut you off what you want. Got 100 yds here, 6.00 a yard plus shipping.
experimenting is good fun for me. Especially if it will replace the cotton stuff..............petro chemical evil though right ? is this evil ? It's better than running a quart of ammonia and a gallon of bleach ( separately, of course ) down the drain per each 4.5 yards cotton.
Saturday, July 23, 2005
Thursday, July 21, 2005
Monday, July 18, 2005
Friday, July 15, 2005
Okay, I won't actually use that name for marketting, just for your use here. BTW: what would you use to market that ? A name ?
Thursday, July 14, 2005
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
I will set aside a budget of $500 for this, first come first serve, dig'um out.
I need at least ten yards per type, fairly continuous yardage, enough for a chair. Maybe twelve yards minimum if in more pieces. No canvas or twills, sorry, as I am SO saturated with that already.
This may wind up in the samples made for the next show or summit, so if you were curious as to what could be done with it, now's the time to find out. I will likely wash it untill it shrivels like a prune and then bleach it high white. This is really recycling, this is a much prettier product than the raw materials.
Karen, I'll edit this is you don't want to do this............ let me know.
Help Us Raise Money
We need funds for more folks to attend the Slipcover Summit in Arizona in June of 2006. and to pay for booth expenses at the International Window Fashion Expo in Florida the end of March 2006. Instead of raising cost to be on the Slipcover Directory or to keep asking for donations, we have come up with an easy fundraising solution.
1)Do you use ink in your inkjet or laser printer? What do you do with the empty cartridges????
2)Do you have old cellphones sitting in a drawer in your house or office?
Simple Recycling is willing to pay us to recycle our ink cartridges and cells phones. All you have to do is save your recycling products and when you get 3 or 4 send them to me at 8118 Skipley Ave, Snohomish Wa 98290.
When we have enough I will turn them into the company and they will pay us for RECYCLING.
It is that easy. Please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800-267-4958 to let me know you will be participating.
Monday, July 11, 2005
I would suggest ideally ( if I had the time ):
the full range of fabrics used
how layers seams, cords, zippers are treated when you line direct
when to go separate with your " lining ", sewing VS stapling, complete VS incomplete coverage
undergarments when used to add padding, applying it, tools, materials, techniques.
That's way too much for two hours, so if you can point me in the direction you need to go, let me know here soon.
Brown will be on the saturday after this class, so we can incorporate your remaining questions in the process of covering the chair you bring for Brown. For Brown: bring the ugliest, most difficult to slipcover chair that you own, but for this first time, please bring cotton fabric. The old rote saying applies here well: light color, pattered, textured, having body and dull surface ( opposite of : dark plain smooth limp glossy ).
Sunday, July 10, 2005
Yea, it could be half full. Go and see what they are wanting, and then decide. I personally don't like to make vinyl slipcovers.
We have classes for the Summit in order. Hope to get this written up
and to folks tomorrow, Monday..
K with SA
slipcover in vinyl ?
I've got to call someone (far away) tomorrow about slipcovering restaurant booths. I don't know anything else at this point. All I can picture is torn slippery vinyl with smears of catsup and old egg. Well, instead of this "glass half empty" ('cus beer also spilled on the booths) approach, I should instead think that maybe the booths are for some cute country diner. Anyone ever done anything like this?
Saturday, July 02, 2005
Thursday, June 30, 2005
I have done enough drapes this year already to be excited about the prospect of only having slipcovers to do later.
Funny, absence makes the heart... da da da da da da.
Funny, I have been trying to warm up to all these luxury fabrics. It's always been a source of pride for me that slipcovers are functional and sturdy. I don't know why I get off on that, it doesn't really seem like much to crow about. I love white beyond all logic.
I don't get into the beautiful expensive delicate fabrics idea about slipcovers. Heck, I wouldn't want someone sitting on my window treatments!
Hot here now, humid, too many excuses to play. I'll be excited about Brown when it becomes a reality. Play play play. Alicia, where are you ?
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
Ha, stir crazy.... I can only walk or stand for so long before the stitching inside my body pulls and my muscles get tired.
My butt hurts from sitting and I look forward to the day I can lay on my stomach again. Small pleasures, but you miss them when it can't be done.
Today I get to drive my car. I am going to my office, and a few errands. Yeepie
As for the Summit content, Angie, Claudia and I are hashing things around. We should have classes soon, and know the teachers.
Thanks for asking..
K with SA
want to share, Karen, any debates you are having with yourself over summit 2006 content ?
Sunday, June 26, 2005
Hi All, it's Sunday..............
Jeannie to have you know I am not just lying around in bed.
No I am not sewing slipcovers because the doctor said
NO LIFTING or DRIVING
Yeek it is hard and I am not use to being kept still.
I have overdone a couple of days, and went to bed
I do get to drive on Tuesday.
So I am taking it easy, computer stuff, contacts, planning
but my brain gets tried from overuse. Is this possible?
Working on Slipcover Press and Summit for 2006.
Oh Dee so glad to know you've been working out!!!!
Saturday, June 25, 2005
As usual I start reading this in the middle of some on-going discussion. So, when I read that Dede got a bench-press you can imagine what I pictured: Dede working out on her shiny new bench press, developing muscles strong enough to lift a chair with a single hand.
Hey Karen--are you walking? Don't just sit and work on your computer. I'm a tyrant, but I want you to get feeling healthy real fast.
Friday, June 24, 2005
Green methods would be any method that uses the chair continuously. The chair is in the workroom ( or the sewing machine is in the home ). Cutting and sewing are done alternately. Uses chair to pin into, and real fabric spread over entire chair, face out. Sewing is done both from the face ( RS ) and from the back ( WS ).
Results of Green: Absolutely fitting, develops visually, no guessing required. Perfect for portable sewing machine use, least bulk in seams of any method here. Not at all abstract, easy to visualize for beginers.
Yellow is any method which, as above, real fabric is spread and pinned onto entire chair usually RS face out, BUT NOW: fitted entirely before any sewing is done . All fitting is done in one session, then all sewing is done later, sewn all on the WS ( more bulky ). Yellow may also be interpretted as WS out, and / or pinning in a pre sewn welt cord. Chair not needed in workroom. Only a little abstract guessing required. A must for one arm furniture, or any furniture that is manufactured as assymetrical.
That makes for four possible combinations to choose one for yourself from yellow: WS out with cord, WS out without cord while fitting. RS out with cord, RS out without cord while fitting. All may end up being sewn with cord inserted, the distinction is whether or not cord is pinned in while cutting.
Results of Yellow: They all feel very different, requiring different skills and giving different results. Each has it's own advantages and drawbacks. All are the same in that the entire chair is used to spread out real fabric, and fitting done before sewing begun. All sewing done later, off site, sewn from the back only. If cord pinned in and WS out, the sewing is easier to delegate than with Green. Very good fit, though slower to pin fit than Orange.
Orange: uses ONLY half the chair, real fabric, pinning all done, only then sewing begun, pinned ALWAYS without cording. Pinned with double layers, WS out usually, though RS out is done as well. Can be done double~double for two chairs at once. This is for on site use, chair not needed in workroom. Double checking fit with additional trip not done, as this is chosen for symetry rather than absolute fit. Sewing delegated after fitting, only to a highly skilled seamstress. More difficult to sew than Yellow or Green. More abstract.
Results of Orange: Very fast for cutter.
Red method again uses the only half the chair, real fabric, face in (WS) or out (RS), but in a SINGLE layer on the arm, double or single on the middle body areas, pin fitted completely then sewn at later time. Some cutting done on site, some cutting done in the workroom later. You are duplicating the mirror image missing arm later. Can be accurate enough to not need double checking fit, with judgement and experience. If chair available in workroom, or with second trip, gives good symmetry and perfect it, sacrificing neither. Best sewn by cutter, or permanent ( dedicated ) team. Even more abstract.
Results of Red: terrific for drop matches, chintz, unbalanced plaids, and very worn chairs.
Purple methods use MUSLIN ONLY to pin fit and cut, then uses that muslin as a pattern. Red method used to pin fit. Purple distinguished by using judgement to interpret that muslin, this is the first instance where you manipulate the fitting by deliberately cutting real fabric differently than muslin is cut, once muslin is off the chair. Off site only if you are confident. Good judgement will require practice. This one fitted muslin you have made may be used for many subsequent duplicate chairs. Fitting trip to recheck optional, as duplication is chosen purposely for averaging. Differences are acceptable, as the benefits of averaging is deemed more important than absolute fit. More and more abstract. Dedicated team best if sewing delegated.
Results of Purple: fits many occaisions and unique demands, saves time, trips, yardage. It's cautious, gives due care to expensive goods.
Blue: Covers are cut from information collected by observation, ( using TAPE measure ) . Shapes and sized then DRAFTED onto the real cloth at workroom, squaring and making grain perfect the real cloth while drafting. NO FITTING is done. Allows for manipulating sizes and shapes, allows the person cutting to bend less, and makes a distinctively attractive if slightly less fitting cover. Launders best of all methods when method is done well. Method only usable when chair ( usually sofa ) can in fact be measured, thus limited to squarish furniture. The only method where true grain is purposely chosen over true fit. Highly abstract. Actually very easy to sew once cut well.
Blue as well: using muslin again as in purple, but with few pins, and perhaps template paper and pencil as well. Avoiding using real goods untill pattern is made. Real cloth can be cut in the workroom, without bending. This yields a more approximate fit. The more pins used while fitting muslin, the better the fit. The primary use of this is ESTIMATION or a chance to think about a difficult chair, repeat visit absolutely recommended for double checking fit untill confident. Launderability can also be a goal, and grain true cutting can be a priority. More fitting than if measured only, applicable to all chairs ( sofas ). This information can also be used to employ Green method off site in one repeat trip, taking machine to sew, but overlocking can be done in the workroom prior. Getting now less abstract than measuring. Once cut well, not hard to sew.
Results of Blue: again, for unique demands, for the occasion where other methods won't work as well. Allows for a good plan for a washable cover. You think longer, in more detail, you come to grasp abstract cutting in the process. This can save time once understood.
Brown : combines, at will ( yours ) COMBINATIONS of the prior methods. My own uses measuring to accomplish the square shape information collecting, templates for the small round shapes ( such as panels ) muslin chalked or pinned for the inside body and inside and outside arms, or whatever is the least bending for the chair that presents itself. Can be an off site method, if so, then,requiring judgement and perhaps a trip to double check. Distinguished by an opportunuty to stitch in the ditch using an off site cutting method, if stitching that way is comfortable or necessary. Real fabric may be pinned to face WR or RS out, seams may face you or face inward, and all cord except for skirt line is already applied at pin fitting. Much more fitting than Green or Blue. Requires the skills learned in all other colors. Most easily learned last, though no step is difficult. This is just my own concoction, your choices may differ as needed. I suspect many of you do this now. Less abstract than blues. Sewing best done by cutter, or by dedicated team.
Results of Brown: it can take you more time, but I like to think it would yield good symmetry, good fit ( instead of having only one or the other ) and give you same advantanges of problem solving as Red or Purple. This needs more experimentation.
This group is presented as a circle, with six primary and secondary colors making wedge shapes. Brown belongs in center, circle within a circle, presented as a blending of colors. The color assignment is purposeful, in that one color shoulders skills with the next, making the order of learning natural. Green is absolutely GO, it is a starting point, though not at all unsophisticated, and not be be regarded as done once and no longer useful. Green is continuingly useful in problem solving when other methods offer no answers.
Tuesday, June 21, 2005
(I'm on my 10th gallon of paint for the house....grrr....)
Oh, honey... I know you feel lousy, but surely you're due for a vacation - okay, this isn't what you had in mind, but...
You're right, it stinks. :-(
There's absolutely nothing USEFUL I can do for you, so I'll think good, healing thoughts from wa-a-a-ay over here!
Feel better soon... okay? :-)
I am still out here. After teaching a week in Chicago
I thought I'd stop by St Lou to have a little surgery.
Recovered at Donna's for a few days and then flew
home to Washington. Took me a day to recover from
the trip. Can't drive until next week, so thought I'd
get the Slipcover Press underway.
Shirley have you pulled that article together?
Does anyone have photos from the Summit to share?
Can someone make me feel better???
Yesterday I was reminded of some stuff ( while I was sewing a slip ) that I mentioned once or twice before.
When customers indicate too me that they want extra large ( loose ) slipcovers and show me with their fingers that they think they want two inches extra everywhere I generally do not do this.
I may leave extra in spots, like perimeter at the bottom of chair, and the inside back some tucks along the top. I create the appearance of big by purposely mis alligning seams a bit. A little twist puts it askew enough to look ill fitted without making it swim on the chair.
We'll see if she likes it. She's the same person who last month wanted half witdh rod pocket panels. It isn't wrong, it's just not what you see done everyday.
Sunday, June 19, 2005
Wednesday, June 15, 2005
I never expected to own a setting press, at least not so soon - there's sooooo much else that I REALLY need. Sooo... I was cruising the Fasnap website (the manufacturer; they also sell direct) and saw an UNBELIEVABLY low price for the very model I craved. I called them - turned out to be a computer glitch, but they said they'd honor that price so naturally, I HAD to buy it! Moments later, the glitch was fixed.
I don't have any dies, though, but I surely don't mind paying for them after such an amazing stroke of luck. So, seriously - if there's something you'd like to try, please let me know and I'll get the proper die (hardware is cheap).
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
I will overnight at my friends house - you are in the D.C. area, Shirley?
Last week of July, first or second week of August would be best for me. I can do it during the week - Wed, Thur, Fri? If I am choosing, then I say around August 3, 4, 5. What say?
Grommets and snaps? What can you use for your outdoor cushions and your motorcycle seats?
Seriously... hardware. Are we talking grommets? Snaps? Vents? Rivets? Grommets start at #00 (hole diameter = 5/32" [4.5 mm]) and #0 (hole diameter = 1/4" [6 mm]). I think #00 is as small as my machine will go - up to #4, possibly. Snaps and rivets are of various sizes; vents come in 1" and 3/4". I need to order the correct dies plus hardware (generally brass or nickel).
Maybe corset lacing over red (black?) faux suede, or...? I am soooooo not a designer, but I need an excuse to buy accessories for my new toy so let me know! :)
Ah, pillows... I delivered three (she had less yardage than she realized) and will make two additional if she can find more. She was on the phone when I dropped them off, so no oohing and ahhing (I HATE that - I'm a praise junkie!). I made a straight inverted pleat at each corner - didn't see Shirley's post about the 45 degree angle until AFTER I had started them (which also looks like Chris Watts' example *sigh*).
I'm serious about the dies. I would loooooove any excuse to buy extra sizes. #00 and #0 grommets are especially tasty...
I don't consider the weekends off limits, he'll just have to adjust. I am taking them four days in a row this week, I have done my doooty.
I know I said bring real work, you need to know it needs to fit down basement steps if the weather is too bad outside. I do have sun shelter, but if it's humid, you'd rather be inside.
Thursday, June 09, 2005
Man, is it HOT... Stuffing pillows and trying not to sweat all over them... *bleah*
The cord is giving me fits. I followed the tutorial, but the cord insists on untwisting and fraying - bad cord! Sit! Stay!
My shiny new aluminum bench press arrived yesterday (oooh... pretty...), but it looks nekkid without any dies. Seriously, if anyone here is planning to attend Shirley's Open House and wants to set some hardware, let me know 'cause I'll be ordering dies.
butterfly :without saying how much to allow in the over all sizing ( because you know the fill pressure you want, how elastic the cloth is, and how much you sew in your seam allowance ) : ( though for the shape of them I will say this, I tend to cut 90 degree angles on corners, and I do not bow out sides for cresting ).
mark the stack of cushions all at once. Fold in quarters, lay atop one another, and clip where the pleat needs to begin to form. Or, measure each one.
Insert a pin on the wrong side, folding each pleat at 45 degrees, insert a pin just at where the line of seam would be.
Flatten pleat fullness with RS facing you. The two sides of the cushion will now appear to be a straight line in front of you. Place cushion top RS up under needle dividing half the pleat fullness ( neatly flat ) to either side of center, and inserting needle an inch back from where it would tack down this fullness.
Gently and evenly pull on the tongue as you stitch across seam line to tack down pleat fullness ( on RS ). It may be willing to pull a great deal, you need to decide how much force to apply, evenly on all corners. You could pull it out of shape if you tried, you just want to round it down some.
If this isn't what you mean by butterfly, then Dede, tell me what you mean. This is what I call a butterfly, and this makes it uniform for me. I do not try to pull the tongue and join both halves all at once. I two stage this process.
You cannot reverse grain on the halves with this and hope sides match. I get enough uniformity in my pleats where I do not have to wait and join the sides and then pleat the last set of corners. Not rounding the original cutting helps this match happen.
This isn't turkish to me, turkish is the same procedure, but gathering up the pleat fullness, and it takes a deep cushion to do it.
Wednesday, June 08, 2005
1. There is a secret to fabricating perfect butterfly corners; and
2. I do not know this secret.
Oh... and twisted cord is the Devil's Own Invention. First join didn't look too bad, but the second looks like cr@p. Haven't decided yet if I should tear out that section and splice in another (= two joins instead of one, but hopefully will look better).
Tuesday, June 07, 2005
I'm amazed I pulled it off without a drop of machine oil or grimey sweat smudges.
Well the rest of the week is dedicated to clearing out my house and painting all surfaces, carpet layer comes Monday and the "for sale" sign goes on the lawn. Whew!
All this is so interesting, but if I skip a day a can't figure out what is answers and what is questions. It 's so backwards. Noone else has this problem?
I just slipcovered a deep button tufted barrel (tub) loveseat in white denim.(luckily it had a cushion---but no back tuckins at arms, of course.) Which means I got to play with lining as well. The lady didn't care about ever seeing the leaf green fabric again so I glued, stapled, sewed, and tagged on the linings.
But the cool, though greedy, thing I just did was "create the right circumstances" so that a customer just bought 10 yards of$87/yard fabric from me instead of $24/yd.
(guess I can spend the rest of the afternon blogging! not.)
Cottons were used almost exclusively in those days, and they were mid heavy weight, starchy, and at the least patterned and maybe even textured as well.
I was in my late teens at the time, I saw them leave the shop in a brown wrapper, I never saw them personally on the cahirs untill I started to cut them myself. I was happy with my own, but this will still the eighties when cotton ( great disguise cotton )was the norm.
With the popularity of luxury fabrics you do need to invent a whole new plan. I won't, I am sticking to cotton. ( I hope )
Well, for the most part. I am stuck now with upholstery weight crap to put on button tufted barrel chairs with no loose cushion. It's a receding color and has too few threads for safety. Dede, we make it up as we go along, cross your fingers, amd hope for the best.
Monday, June 06, 2005
And we're still friends. Don't know what she did with the Sure-Fit... haven't asked, not sure I want to...
PS: I am exceptionally fortunate that I did not inherit my mom's arthritis - her knees and back are toast.
Traditionally ( not that this matters ) the channels are left as is, and the slipcover is allowed to fall into those areas. Was it great ? Not unless it was un~sat~on. Traditionally, wood is left exposed.
Not that you can always afford to mess with neighbors, but as long as there isn't a feud now....no harm done ?
Big one for me, is I never mess with the furniture itself unless I am assured it has zero value as is. I cannot say I have never ever patched a hole or draped muslin over a rough spot, but it's rare and it's always messy looking when I am " finished ". It still looks unfinished when I consider myself finished. I tell them the price to do that is zero, about it's value. That's me.
Channel chairs are already ( usually ) poorly symetrical, it would be very difficult to make them symetrical externally. My back hurts just picturing you leaning over this......
I did this for a neighbor, whose new Sure-Fit (ugh) didn't fit over the cushions AND draped badly in the channels and over the exposed decorative wood. The plan was to cover the channels and wood with Dacron and muslin, and try to squeeze enough fabric out of the slip to make cushions covers (with new fabric on unexposed sections). I got as far as the Dacron/muslin - as I said before, it took forever, looked sloppy around the edges (but, again - I don't know HOW it's supposed to look). The slip DID look much better over the newly covered sections, but she ended up tearing everything off because she had holiday parties to host before I could fabricate the cushions.
what were your expectations ? See if you can name them for yourself.
Slipcovers at best are clothing. They are never, and can never be skin. A skin like appearance is lucky, and still it will slip ( like cat's skin ).
Your best disguise is still a dull surface, woven pattern, a print that contains colors with vivid contrast or just enough swirling contrast that creates movement. Bulk or stiffness, and then hot or white color, but not receding colors, especially if lacking any of the other qualities.
If you padded up a piece of furniture the best way you could, which still isn't upholstery, but the most time you could possibly devote, if the fabric didn't have help from the list above, it would still not appear to be skin like. Even then, it's cats skin. It's only as nice and perfect as it was recently tucked in.
Lining at best will only help to disguise a vivid pattern on the upholstery if poking it's head through a too thin a and too light colored slipcover fabric. At best, it's a slip, think the thing you wear under the dress you don't own.
You can never disguise enough with lining and padding alone, button tuft depressions, so well that you will forget they are there. Forget is a good word here, if it bugs you, it will continue to bug you, unless you choose to forget it.
I accept pretty easy, the boogers that go with ownership of the fresh cover of my choosing that goes on the furniture I happen to own. This is key, I can choose fresh fabric, the chair or sofa is what it is. Lumpy, dumpy, and bumpy never goes away. Wholey arms and crooked cushions only get a little better with padding out.
Lining at best is white out, helping my fabric choice cover COLOR better. The chair or sofa may still be as lumpy as it ever was, if not to my eye, certainly in my memory. It will now also shift like cats skin, but worse, there's two layers to shift, if a garment was made. Staple it on for less shifting.
Now major makeovers, I leave to my upholsterer. People who consistently choose white slips or expensive chinzt should do this, reupholster in muslin. I make clothing, I don't do cosmetic surgery. That's just me. Where there's a budget for cosmetic surgery, heck, take the money, and practice.
Materials: What should you use?
Methodology: How do you apply the materials? Specify order, technique, etc.
Didn't know what it was supposed to look like when I was done (still not sure - examples?). I really was working blind, with 1" Dacron, quilting muslin, poly thread, and a curved needle. I did it in layers, stitching everything directly to the sofa as I went along (trying to soften channels on the IB and arms, and cover/smooth exposed decorative wood).
Also, a time frame - I know I took w-a-y too long, and I still wasn't happy with it.
Saturday, June 04, 2005
I'd better do a mock-up before cutting COM - I think I gained an inch somewhere.
I'll take pictures of my progress but I don't know...my garage is crammed with stuff (also cobwebs and such in the corners...) and it all shows on the photos.
The pieces are either tufted or channeled so I'm adding a layer of batting on each inside back, also 2 chairs have a pattern that shows through the white. Instead of lining the slip (which I've never done) I'm making the underwear the lining.
About bringing real work to Shirleys - I'm so excited! I have 2 pieces that need to be slipcovered to be put on display in my new shop. We can have fun with it maybe...hmmm...how about faux suede with grommets and leather straps as closures!
Thanks, though. :)
*Even though it probably isn't the One True Way...
If you mean the bendable ones, I guess it would depend on how you made that junction. Either making them as two with a piece added to bridge, or just making one envelope, pleating it at the center edges, and stitching that down.
Friday, June 03, 2005
I think I worked out a rough formula: Top and bottom of cover = measurement from one middle of insert width to the other (i.e., middle-of-one-side of insert to middle-of-opposite-side of insert). Measure 1/2 of width of insert away from each corner. Pinch together at that point and baste. When cover pieces are stitched together, the SA will eat 2" overall = proper insert:cover ratio.
I really hope this makes sense to me in the morning...
Dede (hmm... maybe I'll do Ren Faire bodices with all these grommets...)
Just thinking out loud...
Thursday, June 02, 2005
Kim, if it helps you get here, since you are driving anyway, bring real work if you like. We'll get it done.
Wednesday, June 01, 2005
Not greater number of calls taking place, in fact maybe fewer. Larger jobs per call, and people buying unusually expensive stuff ( for my experience at least. ) Ralph Lauren and Pierre Deux in one case.
A couple sales here does not a trend make even if it fills out a month for me.
Anyone else finding big jobs and people loosening up about what it costs ?
Monday, May 30, 2005
Dede, and anyone else wanting to go to Shirleys - when in (late) July can you make it? Check the airfares to see if there are any specials? I'm fairly flexible but the sooner I know a date the sooner I can get plans settled.
Sunday, May 29, 2005
I like brown because it's fitted on the whole piece, without giving up the symmetry of double on half.
Double on half is automatically symetrical whether the furniture is the same on right and left or not. The differences, if not perceptable to the eye, are genrally a non issue, provided you use cotton, no backing, the cotton has some weight and or body, and it's tweedy or it's busy. That will disguise your differences.
Brown takes over when the shortcomings of left and right sides cut the same ( though they are not ) are perceptable. Perception is key, you may be lazy like me and pretend you don't see it, or overly fearful and believe the differences are stark when nobody else would care.
Brown has pieces cut symetrically, and then fitted on the whole chair. You might choose brown ( or Karen's method, or Pat's or Janelles if RS out or Alicia's) so that the left and right are given equal due, but Brown gives you some tricks.
Brown lets you take some lazy ( my favorite ) shortcuts and chalk out, measure or trace for speed, and table cut those pieces so that you aren't bending, and then overlock and cord. Then, you get to assemble ( after pin fiitng double on half ) and overlock inside body pieces, and then the final fitting is seams facing you, so that you can hand them off to a unskilled person to sew. It's already corded, pinned in a single layer to sew, and RS out or WS out as you prefer.
Sorry, I gotta get psyched to get the creative juices flowing. Call me obsessive compulsive. THis will be what I dream about for a month.
There are no shut out dates, we work and/or play regardless of day of week.
I had a chance to go to a local upholstery shop and observe them working. I came home with my head full of new twists and better ways. When I tried them out for myself some of it made sense, and some just didn't work for me. It was a great experience. Learning from another professional isn't always copying their method but tweaking it to fit your method. The summit is a great place for that!! Shirley, still looking forward to the brown session in July, let me know when you set a date!
Saturday, May 28, 2005
Suggesting perhaps Karen's wing chair class first day half day demo and then my Brown and then Karen's full beginner class saturday. Maybe saturday we could have more than two at once ?
That's out of order but best I can do at the moment. I'd hate to be the person playing with the possibilities to chart for vote: yuk, did I just volunteer ?
Kim, you may have had one class with me ( or more ? ) but since I actually do all eight methods, and many people do more than one, you haven't heard it all.
Brown is new. Brown is my own concoction of the other colr on the chart I did about four months ago. Mix red orange yellow green blue and purple and you get brwon. More confuzed ? WE are exploring the benefits and pitfalls of Brown at my house in july 2005.
Your ideas for tracks is great for the Summit. Good idea to get the methods the 1st day and then to go from there, building.. progression.
We also have to remember the Summit is open to new folks just starting out and are still working other jobs. That is why the Saturday classes have been offered in the past (the only reason)
I guess we can't meet everyones needs....
I thought we were discussing the "brown" method. I've taken instruction from all 4 of the teachers you list -
(hmmm...sorry but you lost me)
I think there's three tiers to this class stuff.
Basic methods ( all eight or nine, which can be combined for fewer ).
Two, basic methods taken further, to speed and make more exact. This would include notches, overlocking, lining........but key is, you almost have to assume a method to start the explaining........at least I think that way. Or have one or more teacher take you through aall the variations assuming different methods.
Three, fancy stuff, special items, special techniques, design elements, maybe linings belong here, special zippers like separating zippers.
Lobbying here so that I can direct this to who's coming !!! .........it's so hard to limit the classes, and then so hard to choose.
Suggestion...... " tracks"
Karen ~Shirley, in that order, that first day all students go from one then the next, as Brown and Karen's flow one into the other well.
Maureen ~Bernice first day, students go from one to the next, those are similar and flow.
That's day one, basic method addressed, so that students on day two and day three can ask questions of teachers taking methods further, to get pointed questions about " how does this apply to my method of choice". All the speed and exactness come with context, you have to start by assuming, we should have nailed down a method by then ( context ). Second day cushions, zippers, accesories, headboards, whatever flows.
Third day, lings, design elements, special zippers, high end stuff, business stuff.
Think pyramid, the basics are the bottom, I think we need to track people, or have them pick a track. Either is good. Then, the speed and accuracy elements, then the design and business at the top.
Never more than two choices at a time, and making embelisments compete with embelishments, methods with methods.
Problematic is second day where we'd pair the track with the speed and accuracy class with a person who can address " tracks ". This if just one class offering, and that might be great, would have to be taught by more than one person.
Friday, May 27, 2005
Maybe for 2007 - more lining and underwear how-tos.
Dede (forever in training...)
THAT's what I'm after. Time is money right?
I don't have any fears about double on half...I know where all the pieces go but sometimes can't figure out up or down, right or left. That's why I pin and unpin to serge. I definitely need a notch system.
Shirley, later July would be better for me, on a weekend- hopefully I'll be set up in my shop by then. But I'll try to make it whenever.
Hey Jeanie, I finally checked out your website, really nice!
I'm trying again:
Thanks for all your ideas to add to the list of classes. Kim you have so many great suggestions. Dede, thanks for your ideas about closures. Shirley--we could do a week with just your ideas. I've got them all (more or less) in a form that I'm sending off to the "planning committtee for furthur comment.
drivel.... never drivel Shirley. You are right regarding the big guys wanting to streamline cutting and sewing slipcovers.
Not that we shouldn't do this ourselves to make it all faster
that is why understanding these different techniques is so
Thanks so much
k with sa
It has drawbacks, and many sensible people have pointed them out. Pat. R. doesn't trust the symetry, Dede points out the overlock problem, and many people cannot envision taking the pins out ever. They are all correct, and if we didn't seek out better answers, we wouldn't be acheiving anything new.
There are better answers, and as individual people running shops where we do not have to dumb down the sewing, we can have it both ways. We can have the speed and apply problem solving to minimize the drawbacks. These are good summit classes, which can only survive if they are attended....
those who come to Brown method can tell me all their fears and resistance to double on half. July a good month ? anyone have dates to suggest from Brown ?
64 and 66 is at least a quiet ride, better than 70 and 76.
Angie came twice, once to learn measuring and then to polish that up some more. Judit's been here a dozen times. We can get Denise O. and maybe Susan K. too to come to this one. They ask good questions.
My head is like a stew of ideas, I can think purposely trying to meet a deadline ( like a summit ) and later when there's no deadline get a much better idea. Brown just popped out one day, it's better than any other I have had, including measuring.
Thursday, May 26, 2005
I'd sure like to drive out, it would only take me about 10 hours. I have a friend in DC I'd like to see too! Keep me posted.
when Shirley says you have to share the shower at her place, she means one at a time. Also the accomadations are very comfortable if she lets you use her couches... they make into a bed pit.
If you get the opportunity to take her up on the offer, you should go, you will learn a lot.
K with SA
I have primitive guest arrangements, we will have fun, but we'll have to share the shower.
Anyone interested or know someone who would be, contact them and let's agree to meet here.
Sorry for the obsession about not bending, it really preoccupies my every waking moment. But, it does give me a perspective and drive to find a way to cut a slipcover that avoids overuse of knees and back. It may not seem that important to you personally, hopefully, it will never be.
I promise you fun as well. Let me know if you want to participate. slipcoverlady at juno dot com