Ads

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Curtain Making

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Curtain Making

    Thought it would be fun to post some bits and pieces on elementary curtain making just to see if anyone would be interested. We can start at the beginning with calculating how much fabric you will need to buy once you have identified how many drops (widths of fabric) you need to make your curtains.

    Fabric Calculations


    Once you know the dead drop of your curtain you can start to calculate the amount of fabric required to complete the job. It is very important to calculate with care and check the measurements thoroughly. This may seem a very elementary exercise but as curtain makers we take responsibility for the amount of fabric required to construct the curtains we make and ending up with insufficient or far too much fabric can be inconvenient, embarrassing and costly.

    The cut length or cut drop is the dead drop of the curtain plus an allowance made for headings and hems. In most cases the allowance for headings and hems will be 300 mm (30cm).



    Calculating for plain fabric

    Where plain fabric is concerned we can simply take the finished drop of the curtain add 300mm (30cm) to use as a heading and hems allowance. Multiply the total by the number of widths you need to make the finished curtain. Round up the total to the whole metre. Let’s conclude that we needed 5 widths of fabric to make our curtains and that the finished drop of 2 x 2.5 width curtains is 2.4 metres.

    Finished drop = 2.400
    H&H allowance = .300
    Total = 2.700 metres

    2.7 metres x 5 widths = 13.5 metres - round up to 14 metres

    You will need to buy 14 metres of fabric to make your curtains




    Hope these notes will be of interest
    Last edited by Classical Genesis; 05-10-2010, 04:34 PM.
    Learning together for profit or pleasure
    I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

    Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com


  • #2
    Calculating for patterned fabric

    Here's the next lesson for calculating patterned fabric
    Calculating for patterned fabric

    When you are ordering fabric that has a pattern repeat which you intend to take account of in your pleating design you will need to calculate the length of the fabric required by numbers of pattern repeats.

    Example- finished drop of curtain = 2.400
    H&H allowance = .300
    Cut drop = 2.700 metres

    Here the pattern repeat is 510mm (51cm) so we will divide this into the cut drop of the curtain.

    Cut drop 2.700 metres divided by 510mm (51cm) = 5.29 repeats

    Round up 5.29 repeats to 6 and multiply this by the number of widths we need to make our curtain. In thie lesson we will assume that we needed 6 widths of fabric to make our curtains.

    (an explanation of why we need to round up the number of our our vertical pattern repeats is given in the next post explaining cutting allowances)

    6 repeats multiplied by 6 widths = 36 repeats

    You need to add in 1 further pattern repeat which will provide you with enough fabric to set out the position of your pleat line within the first pattern drop when you first cut into your fabric.

    36 repeats plus 1 = 37 repeats

    Multiply the number of repeats by the measurement (drop) of the repeat and round up to the whole metre.

    37 multiplied by 510mm (51cm) = 18.870 rounded up to 19 metres

    You will need to buy 19 metres of fabric to make your curtains.
    Last edited by Classical Genesis; 05-10-2010, 04:35 PM.
    Learning together for profit or pleasure
    I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

    Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

    Comment


    • #3
      Explanations for cutting allowances

      Explanations for cutting allowances


      When you first unroll the fabric on the bench and before you take your shears to it you must select the point across the fabric where you intend to make your line of pleats. The fabric suppliers will not know what you have in mind so they will cut at random, from the roll in their store, the amount of metres you order. From the top of the randomly cut fabric to the point you determine your pleating line will be may be anything up to a full pattern repeat so you must make an allowance for this in your final calculation. This is why you order one extra pattern repeat.

      When you have decided where the line of pleats will sit across the fabric, thus determining where the top of the curtain will be, you must allow 50mm (5cm) above this line for the face fabric to be turned over the top and down the back of the buckram when you form your heading. This heading allowance is part of the 300mm (30cm) you allowed for headings and hems when you first calculated your cut drop. From the point, above the pleating line, where you have determined your heading allowance will commence you can now mark your fabric with a pin, square a line across and cut the excess away. Measure down the fabric the distance previously calculated for your cut drop which was 2.7 metres. When you reach this point and mark the fabric with a pin you can cut the fabric square across and take the remaining fabric, still on the roll, up to the top and lay it on the first piece. Here you can see the point at which the first cut drop matches the pattern of the second. You will note that there is an excess above the point that the two pieces match. This is called over matched fabric and it is the amount of fabric that you must discard to ensure that the patterns on each length of fabric start and finish at exactly the same point top and bottom before you start to seam the widths together. Shear off the over matched fabric from the top of your second cut drop and again measure 2.7 metres down the length. Repeat this process until you have all your pieces of fabric cut to the same length with the patterns matching top and bottom. If you count the pattern repeats down the face of your drop including the length of overmatched fabric you will see that the number of repeats is the same as the rounded up figure in our original calculation.
      Learning together for profit or pleasure
      I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

      Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

      Comment


      • #4
        The pleated heading

        The various elements of the pleated heading are as follows and must all be taken into consideration within the pleating design







        These elements can be broken down into two areas


        Pointy outy bits. These are the pleats and they stand forward.

        Flat bits. All the bits that lie flat to the pole or track and those which point back toward the wall or overlap in the centre when it is drawn together.

        .................................................. ................................................

        The basic pleating arrangement for classic hand made curtains is four pleats per width of fabric based on more or less 1.4 metres of usable width of fabric between selvedges.

        Where plain fabric is concerned the free space must be calculated by first measuring the track or pole where the curtain is to be hung and then adding an element of fullness. The term fullness is simply a multiplication of the length of the track or pole by a rational value i.e. 2 times or 2.5 times depending upon how much fabric volume you would like to see in the body of the curtain when it is finally hung.

        The starting point is usually around 2.5 times and can vary anywhere from this figure up to 2.9 or 3 times fullness but rarely higher. It is most certainly not safe to assume that simply adding an allowance of 2.5 times fullness will always provide you with the correct amount of fabric to make your curtains as there are many variable elements which can and will interfere with your calculations.

        Where plain lined curtains, which are constructed with pencil pleat heading tape, are concerned any volume from 2 times upwards will usually suffice but I can not reasonably advise on that as I have never made curtains with header tape. I am a classicist and therefore describe only those calculations which refer to hand pleated, interlined curtains. These curtains tend to retain more weight and depth within the body of the curtain and the calculations are based around classic pleating proportions rather than simply adding an element of fullness.
        Last edited by Classical Genesis; 15-05-2017, 09:19 AM.
        Learning together for profit or pleasure
        I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

        Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

        Comment


        • #5
          Calculating fabric for a half drop

          Calculating a half drop

          A half drop occurs when the matching point of a diagonal pattern is not mirrored identically at the opposite edge of the fabric along the line of the weft but alternates consistently on opposite sides half way down the pattern repeat creating a staggered effect - see fig 1 below.




          Fig 1



          This simply means that the point at which the patterns match is half the pattern repeat lower on each joining and if you cut all your lengths without noticing this you would be a half a pattern out on every cut drop as you can see below in fig 2.


          Fig 2







          There is a very simple way of dealing with this. If you cut your first drop and then remove a half pattern prior to cutting the next cut drop the two pieces will join at the correct point see fig 3 below.


          Fig 3


          This is fine if you are only cutting two widths of fabric and if you continued on like this you would end up cutting away half a pattern for every drop apart from the last one.

          If you need to cut 6 lengths from a roll of fabric to make two three width curtains you can cut the first three identical lengths from the roll without making any adjustment or additional cuts.

          Next cut away one half pattern and then cut the three remaining lengths. You will then be able to alternate these 6 lengths of fabric to make your two curtains of three drops each. The only difference this has made to my fabric order is that I need to add one half pattern drop to the overall order. See fig 4



          Fig 4







          In some cases the additional fabric required for the half drop cut will naturally be found within the cut drop calculations.

          When you divide your cut drop by the measurement of the vertical pattern repeat the overmatched fabric or wastage will be identified.

          Cut drop = 2.5 metres pattern repeat = 270mm

          2.5 metres divided by 270mm = 9.26 pattern repeats. Here you must round up to 10 pattern repeats

          10 repeats x 270mm = 2.7 metres minus the 2.5 metres cut drop = 200mm of extra fabric in each cut length

          In this case you will see that the 200mm of wastage is greater than half of the pattern repeat so, in this case, you will not need to add any addition fabric to your order as it is already accommodated for within the calculation.
          Last edited by Classical Genesis; 12-11-2009, 06:58 PM.
          Learning together for profit or pleasure
          I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

          Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

          Comment


          • #6
            Welcome back!!! ....................and with such panache!

            Comment


            • #7
              Thank you

              Thank you Peter

              Clive
              Learning together for profit or pleasure
              I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

              Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Cutting and squaring fabric

                Cutting and squaring patterned fabric

                Patterned fabric will generally fall into one of three categories. Woven patterns, printed patterns or embroidered patterns.

                Woven Fabric

                When dealing with problems in woven patterns there is no reason to suppose that the fabric has not been woven correctly. If in doubt fray out a clean line along the bottom of the fabric and check that the patterns have been woven square to the loom. The fabric will have come from the loom with the weft square to the frame but constant rolling and re-rolling of fabrics between the foreign manufacturers, British or continental wholesalers and local suppliers account for most of the problems experienced when woven patterns appear to be out of shape. Soft woven fabrics can usually be coaxed gently back shape whilst stiffer cotton weaves and silks take a little more persuading by pinning down the fabric and pulling corner to corner. With the aid of a little steam and a warm iron most fabrics will yield and regain their intended square form. Additional care must be taken with silk fabric, however, as it will elongate quite readily with the application of steam and has little or no natural elasticity so if care is not taken you can end up doing more harm than good with your efforts to re-shape the fabric.

                Printed and embroidered fabric

                Problems with out of square fabrics are usually associated with those which are printed or embroidered and the alignment problems occur when the base fabric is fed into a printing or embroidery frame incorrectly or out of square which results in the patterns visibly falling diagonally off the weft line when the grain of the fabric is brought to square.

                In professional work one must first decide whether to use the fabric or not depending on the extent of the pattern distortion. If you do not wish to use the fabric it will need to be returned to the supplier with a complaint.

                When you are hand pleating to the pattern or design of printed or embroidered fabric it is essential that these patterns fall onto the pleats as you have designed them to so do and just because they are not in line with weft grain this is no reason to tear out your hair or chance getting the job wrong because you haven't squared up the patterns correctly.

                Imagine that the warp and weft fibres are the vertical slats, (warp in fabric terms) and horizontal slats (weft in fabric terms), in a trellis fence panel. The panel can be moved into or out of square by simply moving the sides back and forth. Fabric is no different and just as you can bring the distorted grain of a woven fabric back into square you can move the patterns of a printed fabric into square whilst the grain of the fabric remains out of square.

                This will not have a detrimental effect on the finished work as the warp fibres will all remain vertical and the weft fibres will have been set in shape so will not be fighting them. Simply face up to the problem when you cut the drops from the roll and are flat on the bench and all will be well. The squaring of the fabric or pattern must be carried out on the cut lengths before seaming them together to make the finished, usable width of fabric for each curtain.
                Last edited by Classical Genesis; 05-10-2010, 04:38 PM.
                Learning together for profit or pleasure
                I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

                Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  would you believe i just set up my new craft room (in my conservatory) this past couple of days and have decided to have a go at making my own curtains!!! god knows why?? this info you have provided has come just in time. many thanks

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks

                    Thanks Mum of 2

                    I am happy to help with any information you need on the basics of hand crafted work. I will post a few pictures of samples that have been made in the workroom here, maybe they will provide a little inspiration....... or maybe not???????

                    Clive
                    Learning together for profit or pleasure
                    I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

                    Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Pictures of classic proportioning

                      Here are some pictures as promised. They represent classic proportion and scale in basic window treatments and the patterns and designs woven into or printed on the fabrics have been used to best advantage to enhance the finished work. This kind of work is not to everyone's taste and it represents only a very small part of what we call soft furnishings, a skill that has been developed in this country for well over 6 hundred years.

                      Every craftsman in every industry will tell you that once you have learned the basic craft work, how to use the tools and how the variety of materials we use perform and work together you can make a good fist of any project. This doesn't mean that it can't be fun. There is a place for everyone in this industry from homemakers to top professionals.

                      My aim in all that I do is to is to help every person, who loves fabric and sewing, to find a small niche somewhere in this vast industry where they can produce something of beauty that gives them satisfaction and contentment,...even a little praise sometimes. God knows there is little enough of that in life.




                      See what you think and let me know

                      Thank you




























                      Last edited by Classical Genesis; 05-10-2010, 04:38 PM.
                      Learning together for profit or pleasure
                      I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

                      Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        very impressive i must say, i cannot imagine mine turning out like that , but i will try . i will keep you posted on how i get on. many many thanks

                        roisin

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          So you want to make some curtains

                          So you want to make some curtains

                          Well, let's look at some terminology first so that we don't get all mixed up frustrated when I mention these terms later. We will start with the finished curtain.

                          Hand pleated curtains consist of a number of elements which are, as in all curtains quite simple to understand really. In the picture beneath you will see the descriptions of various parts of this curtain.

                          The pleat line refers to that part of the curtain which contains the two most important calculable elements in setting out. these elements are:-

                          Flat bits and pointy-outy-bits

                          Let's take the flat bits first. the flat bits is a cumulative term for the parts of the head of the curtain which sit along the track or pole and consist of:

                          1. Centre overlap - this is where the curtains will overlap when drawn together. The usual measurement for this is 25 to 30mm (2.5 to 3cm) on each curtain.

                          2. Spaces and half spaces - A curtain will always start at the leading edge with a half space and end at the back edge with a half space. This ensures that when the curtains are drawn together the two leading edge half spaces appear as one full space and the pleats look even. The half space at the back edge frames the last pleat. Each of the pleats is accorded a half space at either side of it. This completes the proportion of the head.

                          3. Ease - Often called spring back by curtain makers. This is an important element in the design and function of your curtain. The stiffening buckram sewn or fused into the top of the head has a natural spring to it and when the curtain is drawn open with the pleats to the front and the spaces pleating backwards in a concertina shape it will act as a spring and want to retract when the curtains are drawn together. To prevent this happening a little more fabric is added to each of the spaces so that the spaces can stay in a slightly curved shape. Around 30mm (3cm) per width of fabric is usually enough to solve this problem. Should you wish to design the head of the curtain such that the spaces develop a deeper curve, possibly to carry a little more shadow and make the pleats appear a little bolder then this allowance can be increased. Most of this is in the eye of the beholder but it is fairly safe to say that, even with corded track or rail systems where the mechanism will draw the spaces very flat to the pole, few people prefer the flat angular statement that this makes.....well, in truth, there are some that would....silly old me.

                          4. Back edge return - This is the flat part of the head which points back to the wall. Not always used and not always necessary but useful if there is no pelmet or valance and the external lighting drifting in past the top edges of the curtain are a nuisance or in the situation where the pole stands away from the wall more than 100mm (10cm) as some of the larger ones do. You need to be careful adding returns as this will add a considerable amount of additional fabric to the back edge of the curtain from top to bottom at the back vertical edge, this extra fabric can be difficult to deal with comfortably.

                          5. Side turnings - These are simply the turnings or hems which fold back into the curtain. They are stitched down to the interlining and the lining is stitched to them. I have always used 70mm (7cm) as a standard measurement. Occasionally it is increased a little if I need to make large rolled leading edge but rarely will I change this measurement




                          Pointy-outy-bits

                          Let's move on now to the pointy-outy bits. Naturally these are pleats. The most common form of them in curtains are triple pleats, double pleats and goblet pleats. Each of these can be seen in the picture above.

                          There are, of course more pleats than these but they are not often used in classic curtain making. box pleats and pencil pleats are often used for fixed headings i.e. valances where they are fixed into place permanently It was the norm for Victorian door curtains to have hand sew pencil pleat headings as these curtains were normally attached to portiere rods and drawn across the inside of the door to keep out draughts, more for function than decoration.


                          The Crown of the curtain

                          At the top of the curtain we will divide the fabric up into spaces and then scrunch up what's left into shapes we call pleats. Working down the curtain from here there must come a point where scrunched up bits start to fall out into plain folds which concertina back and forth evenly down through the body of the curtain. As you will see in the picture above, the shape created immediately below the pleat differs with each type. The length and shape of these droplets will vary not only with the style of pleat but with the type of fabric and interlining which one uses to make the curtain.

                          It is always inviting to use the design of the fabric such that the patterns and pictures woven or printed will sit in either the pear shaped droplet which sits below the pleat or in the elongated diamond shape between the pleats themselves. This is demonstrated in the picture below.

                          Once the bottom of the crown is reached the patterns and pictures fall repetitively down through the body of the curtain.







                          The body of the curtain

                          Once we are below the crown and into the body of the curtain one can at last see some evidence of the fullness. At the pleat line this is not entirely visible because of the scrunching up of the fabric into pleats. The amount of fullness is directly relative, on patterned fabric, to the horizontal pattern repeat of the fabric. If we are pleating by design then we will take the horizontal pattern repeat and into it we will place one pleat and one space. Assuming that there are 4 pattern repeats to the width of fabric we are working with the repeat will measure around 350mm (35cm) more or less.

                          1.4 metres divided by 4 = 350mm (35cm)

                          This measurement which will make one space and one pleat will produce one forward and backward fold in the body of the curtain so the fullness is added to the curtain by one quarter width of fabric for each pleat and space. The 350mm (35cm) naturally divides into 2 for each of the folds so the front to back measurement of the body of the curtain will be 175mm (17.5cm). This measurement is not relevant to the relationship between the size of the pleat and the size of the space. larger pleats and smaller spaces simply mean that there will need to be more spaces to sit along the pole or track therefore there will be more quarter widths needed to make the curtain. The relationship between the pleats and spaces should be one of classic proportion.

                          My intention was to make these information posts simple but reading through this one I think I have made it so complicated and boring that I will be surprised if you read any more. Still, do your best and I will try to answer your questions, that is if you can stay awake long enough after reading this to write any.



                          Last edited by Classical Genesis; 28-09-2009, 09:45 AM.
                          Learning together for profit or pleasure
                          I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

                          Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Wow how incredibly kind of you to post all this info for us, your work is stunning you make it look so easy.... and I know it really is'nt

                            Thank you
                            Karen
                            www.angelicfolk.co.uk
                            Bespoke clothing for your little angels
                            http://angelicfolk.etsy.com
                            http://www.facebook.com/#!/angelic.folk?ref=profile

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              KInd words

                              Thank you for your kind words Karen. This is fine praise, especially when your own work is so delightful.

                              The work displayed in the posts here is students work, some of whom could do little more than sew on a button prior to their courses.

                              Rich or poor, all my lovely students have one thing in common and that is their love of craft work and it always shows in their finished samples.

                              I will write more as soon as I have a little time. I hope the notes will be of value.

                              Clive
                              Learning together for profit or pleasure
                              I could be unhappy with my life but someone keeps sending me spring

                              Blog https://classicalgenesis.wordpress.com

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X