wave tucks

wave tucks

Monday, April 25, 2016

Sewing Club Is In The News!

The Leader Newspaper wrote an article last week about the Stevens Elementary Sewing Club.  The kids are going to think they are famous!  Here is the link to the online article and photos. 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Spring Projects & Updates from SK Designs

Happy Spring, everyone!  SK Designs has been very busy this Spring with client projects, continuing education, volunteer projects and outdoor projects too...you will see a little of each of those things in this blog post.
In 2014, we created a layered sheer and drapery treatment on an arched rod for a beautiful master bathroom with an arched window and ceiling.  The photo of that project is below.
That client had recently changed the wall treatment to a gorgeous black (yes, black!) wallpaper on a couple of walls, including the wall behind the bathtub.  Another wall in this gorgeous room has black textured wallpaper with sparkling crystals in it...it is stunning!  She wanted to replace the arched drapery panels but use the existing custom rod, which we did.  Here is the completed project, below.

Isn't it lovely?  The dramatic dark background is just beautiful.  I love the rug also...and it is sparkly!  After we installed the panels, we realized there might be times where the homeowner would like to have more light in the room from that beautiful window, but still want privacy.  So we are going to add a semi-sheer treatment behind the panels, and the existing drapery panels will be held back with these very glam, layered holdbacks.  They will be the perfect complement to the crystal knobs and pulls on the cabinetry. The smaller starfish style holdback actually stacks on top of the silver and crystal one, for added dimension and sparkle. I love these!   
Wait until you see the selected fabric for the under sheers - you will have to be patient and see them in a future blog and after they are installed. 
SK Designs also replaced existing drapery panels in the adjacent master bedroom.  This is also a gorgeous room!  We will be replacing the sheers next.
Another new client wanted stationary silk drapery panels for her dining room, which will be hung on decorative metal hardware.  I proposed stationary roman shades for the side windows also, to fill in the space above those windows also, and to utilize her remaining fabric from her upholstered dining chair seats. 
I created a rendering showing both options - with and without the shade, so she could visualize the difference and make her choice.  
She selected the option with the roman shade :). This will add visual height and make use of the existing complementary fabric. 
Another recent project had a great result.  It was for traversing drapery panels for a music room.  The wall treatment and decorative (and functional) musical instruments make this a striking room! 
We lined the drapery panels in blackout lining and bump interlining, which is a very heavy interlining.  This will help reduce sound from permeating outside of the room.  We took careful measurements and planned the length of the draperies and the location of the drapery hardware so that it fit on the top strip of the horizontal wood wall treatment.  It looks great!
In addition to a wonderful variety of client projects this year, I attended a drapery workroom fabricator's conference in February which was held in Charlotte, North Carolina.  It was the first time in many years that I attended an event as an attendee, and did not have any teaching or coordinating responsibilities.  It was a delight!  It was so much fun to see so many colleagues and friends all in one place again.
One of my favorite classes was by Penny Bruce, who owns a terrific drapery business in England.  She taught a class on Pleating on Design and showcased many photo examples of how fabric can look very different depending on the pleat locations.  The photo below shows the same fabric which is pleated in two different locations in the pattern repeat.  It is amazing how different the end result is and how much that determination can change the look of a treatment.
Last fall, I began teaching an after school Sewing Club class at a local public elementary school.  I contacted the school principal to see if they would be interested in offering this class, and she happily agreed.  We have 5 students (4 girls and 1 boy) from the fourth and fifth grades.  We had a waiting list of 50 interested students - oh my!  Classes started in October and we kept the same students into this semester, and will finish in May.
Their first project was to learn some hand sewing skills.  They selected a fabric and their choice of buttons, and sewed them using an embroidery hoop and designated markings for each hour of a clock.  Then we added a clock mechanism, so they have their own personal embroidery-hoop-clock!  They were so excited to be able to keep their projects and take them home.
We have also made a pillowcase with banding, a drawstring bag, a reading pillow (a pillow with a large pocket on the front to hold a book) with carrying strap, and an apron with contrast pocket, rickrack detail and ribbon sash.
This week we took the kids on a field trip to Joann Fabrics so that they could select fabrics, trim and thread of their choice for their Mother's Day project.  They had a great time picking out things that they thought their mothers will like.  It was so much fun; I think I might have had more fun than they did.



This wonderful spring weather has had me (finally) motivated to work in the yard.  I found two vintage sewing machine bases and have turned them into planters (thank you, Pinterest!)  This one is outside of my studio, and has a Sherwin Williams antique wooden box attached for the planter. 

The photo at right shows the Singer sewing machine base that is on my front porch. 
I hope you have enjoyed the latest activities and updates from SK Designs - hope to hear from you soon!    Susan

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

New Awards for SK Design Projects!

My favorite industry trade magazine, Window Fashions - Vision, annually hosts our industry's largest convention, the International Window Coverings Expo (IWCE).  This year the event is held in Las Vegas, in conjunction with KBIS (the massive Kitchen & Bath show). 

I was unable to attend the event this year, but was notified that SK Designs is the recipient of TWO awards, which were announced at the awards ceremony last night.  Whoo hoo!

The project below was awarded Second Place in the Decorative Hardware & Trim category.  This was a wonderful window treatment project for an open concept family room and breakfast area. 

Photography by Brandy Stoesz Photography
Decorative metal hardware was used in the family room between the swags, and coordinating accent hardware is featured on the mini cornice and swag in the breakfast room.

The bonus feature of the above project is that this wonderful client was referred to me by a very talented and multi-award winner colleague in Denver, Colorado.  She had worked with this client in the Denver area, and recommended SK Designs to her when the client moved to the Houston area.  We have completed numerous projects in this home and are continuing now with another project.  Thank you for the referral, Sheri!

Photography by Brandy Stoesz Photography

The adorable slipcovered rocker shown to the left was awarded First Place in Upholstery and Slipcovers!  This fun project was created using a raspberry textured fabric, a cream matelass√© style fabric, and a floral barkcloth fabric.  The client purchased vintage pinch pleated draperies (the barkcloth fabric) at an antique show.  SK Designs took the draperies apart and determined which parts were still usable and undamaged by time and use.  We had *just* enough fabric to match the pattern repeat on the front of the chair back and the seat cushion.  We turned the fabric pattern sideways for the seat cushion boxing, which created a pretty design feature (and was necessary due to the limited fabric. 

Photography by Brandy Stoesz Photography

 Contrast cording was made from the cream colored fabric, and a small pleated frill accents the bottom hem (below which Velcro is used to attach to the bottom of the chair frame in order to secure the slipcover in place) and at the top of the chair back.

The photo below shows the entire room, which features custom pillows, duvet and bedskirt, by SK Designs.  Isn't the room adorable?  I love the shabby chic collections that the homeowner has found at area antique shows!

The charming story of the slipcover is that the chair was purchased by my client's father for her mother, and she was rocked in the chair as a child.  She now rocks her own grandchildren in the chair, which is known as the "magic chair" for always soothing the children in the chair.

Brandy Stoesz Photography