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Frequently Asked Questions about Custom Silk Drapery

Remember what your teacher told you...there's no such thing as a stupid question!

OK there is...but ask it anyway.  Because we need to be entertained!
 

So you won't laugh at me then?

Yes, but not to your face.  And even if we do, then you'll get through it and emerge a stronger, more interesting person.  C'mon...we don't have all day...let's see your best Christiane Amanpour investigative researching face.
 
What's the difference in a width and a panel and how many do I need?

All of our silks are 54” wide fabrics. Each cut of fabric (54” wide X ???” long) is called a “width”. Widths can be sewn together vertically to make wider panels. We can also split widths in half. For example, a full width sewn to a 1/2 width is called “1.5 widths”, and 2 full widths sewn together is “2 widths”.

Please note that we require 3” for each side hem, so a “1 width” panel is 54” - 3” - 3” = 48” wide.

Pescara (Rod Pocket) , Lolita (Tab Top) and Flat Panel
 

# of Widths

Recommended size
(some fullness)

Max. Size
(flat)

1

Up to 32”

48”

1.5

Up to 50”

75”

2

Up to 68”

102”

2.5

Up to 86”

129”

3

Up to 104”

156”

3.5

Up to 122”

183”

4

Up to 140”

210”

Pleated Panels:
Versailles (French Pleat) , Tipperary (Pinch Pleat) , Puerto Modero (Inverted Pleat) , Castledale (Button Pleat) and Chaplin (Goblet Pleat)

# of Widths

Will Cover

Panel size BEFORE pleating

1

Up to 22”

48”

1.5

Up to 34”

75”

2

Up to 46”

102”

2.5

Up to 58”

129”

3

Up to 70”

156”

3.5

Up to 82”

183”

4

Up to 94”

210”

Le Rouche (Smocked Top Panels)

# of Widths

Will Cover

Size before Smocking

1

Up to 17”

48”

1.5

Up to 27”

75”

2

Up to 36”

102”

2.5

Up to 45”

129”

3

Up to 54”

156”

3.5

Up to 63”

183”

4

Up to 75”

210”


What styles of drapery are suitable for my space?

Really it's up to your own personal style.  Only you know the vision inside your head, and we'd like to free you up to follow that...wherever it takes you.  But what we can do is let you know the styles that are available.  We're sure you'll pick the perfect one for each room of your home.  And just to set your mind ease, despite all those silly magazines...you can't make a wrong decision about this...anything you choose will look amazing!  

Tab Top with Silk Wraps - We call it the Lolita

A tab top is a flat piece of fabric with wide tabs sewn in at the top that slip over a fixed or stationary rod.  Ours come with silk wraps that serve to gather the bottom of the tab and wrapping it in silk.  Just choose any coordinating silk for your wraps when you order your drapery.  Tab tops are a good way to go if you don't want to fool with rings.  Just take them out of the box and slide them onto your rod!  Tab tops primarily get pleating from the natural folds of the fabric that occur when the material is gathered together. These drapes provide a free flowing pleated look that can be formal or casual. 
 

French Pleat - The Versailles Drape

French pleated drapery is what you see most often.  Fabric is gathered into pleats that are sewn at the bottom and fan out at the top...exactly like a fan.   To hang, pins are inserted into the back of the pleat and looped through the rings of your choice.  Though you might've heard differently, we don't recommend using clips with silk drapery.  Over time, this simply puts too much stress on the drapery, and the metal will eventually pull the silk. 
 

Pinch Pleat - The Tipperary Drape

Pinch pleats are the reverse of a French Pleat.  Whereas a French pleat is cinched at the bottom of the pleat and fans out at the top, a pinch pleat is "pinched at the top of the pleat and fans out at the bottom.  Again, pins are inserted in the back of the drapery and used with rings to hang. 
 

The Castledale Drape

The Castledale is a sophisticated twist on either the French or Pinch Pleat, created by adding a button either to the bottom of your French Pleat or the top of your Pinch Pleat.  Buttons are handmade and covered in the same silk as your drapery.
 

The Goblet Pleat or Chaplin Drape

The Chaplin gives the traditional French Pleat a little lift...literally...as each pleat is hollowed out and filled with batting to create the look of a (say it with me) goblet.  Ah, it's all starting to come together now, right? 
 

The Pescara or Rod Pocket

Everyone has seen this one and done it, no doubt, as it is the easiest of them all.  Constructed with a pocket at the top of the panel.  Slide it on the rod and Bob's your uncle! 
 

The Back Pleat or Puerto Modero

The exact reverse of the French Pleat, the inverted pleat is smooth on the front due to the fact that all the gathering is done on the back of the panel.  This is a very sleek, simple look with clean lines.  Good whenever you want something classy but you don't want to gussy it up too much.
 

The Le Rouche or Smocked Panel

Very special...almost as special as those dresses your mama used to smock for you when you were little.  Each panel is gathered or rouched at the top, creating the look of real smocking.  
 

The Flat Panel

So basic we didn't even give it a fancy name.  Here's how flat panels work -- pins are inserted into the back of each panel at regular intervals and then those pins are used to hang the drape on the rod, just like with French Pleats.  Only in this case, since there isn't a sewn pleat, the drape will fall forward in between each ring creating it's own soft pleats.  It actually looks a lot cooler than you might think! 
 

What is buckram?

Buckram is a stiffener used at top or head of drapery in order to give strength and shape to the pleating. 
 

What are sheers?

Usually made of organza, sheer drapery is used behind your main drape and serves to provide filtered light, while maintaining some privacy.  Sheers also give your window treatments depth and can create a very dramatic space.  Sheers are available in any of our 9 drapery styles.
 

Do I really need to line my drapery?  

Lining your drapery provides three advantages over an unlined drape: 

1) Insulation from winter cold and summer heat
2) Noise reduction from outside sources
3) Privacy -- you can't see through lined drapery
4) Protection from sun damage to your drapery -- lined drapes can last 10-15 years longer than unlined drapes
5) Light reduction -- and if you really want to darken the room, maybe for sleeping, choose a blackout lining (see below for more details). 
6) Aesthetic -- lined drapery looks more full and finished than unlined -- the extra layer creates more fullness to your drapery
 

What is blackout lining?

Blackout lining is what you find in most hotels...that's why you sleep so well, because with that lining, the room becomes very dark.  This is an especially good choice for bedrooms.  And when you're up and awake, open your drapes and let the light pour in! Blackout drapes also reduce noise from the street.  You can add the blackout lining option to any of our custom made drapery. 
 

Do you offer valances?

Our workroom is happy to make standard valances for you...the labor cost is the same as for a regular drapery panel, but because they are short, considerably less fabric is required. 
 

How do I measure for drapes and curtains?

Measure for the length and width of the panels. For fuller panels, you'll need several widths of fabric. For panels that will draw to close, the rule of thumb is that the fabric panels should be about 2.5 times the width of the window opening plus overlap at the center and the return on the sides. If you're using sheer fabric, you might decide on 5 times the width of the window for a sensual look.

Width: If a ROD EXISTS, the width is the total number of whole inches across the front or face of the rod from tip to tip (side to side or left to right); DO NOT add anything to width of the rod -- simply measure the face of the current rod.  When NO ROD EXISTS, measure the total number of whole inches across the front or face of the window casing or opening (side to side or left to right) and add 6". We will automatically make allowances for the overlap in the middle (for pair of drapes - opening in the middle) by adding extra fabric to each drape.

Length (or Height): If a ROD EXISTS, the height (up and down) is your easiest measurement. Place your tape measure on the top center of the rod and measure the whole inches down to where you want the drape to hang. That's it. We are looking for your desired finished length.  When NO ROD EXISTS: Determine what diameter rod you will be using and where your rod will be positioned.  Once you've done this, follow same instructions above, using your "imaginary" rod.

Puddle: You will also need to determine if you would like your drapery to "puddle" on the floor.  Follow these guidelines:
 

1” extra  panels will hit floor and “break”
2” - 4” extra moderate “puddle” effect
6” - 8” extra generous “puddle” effect

Can you wash silk drapes in a washing machine?

All 100% silk fabric is recommended dry clean only.  You should never throw your silk drapes in the washing machine unless you're the funky sort going for a distressed and deconstructed look.  If you do decide to wash your drapes, please do not wash them with the rod...leave that on the wall. 
 

What are the advantages to buying my drapes directly from the manufacturer?

Obviously, cutting out the middle man keeps the money he'd make in your pocket.  Drapery is often marked up in excess of 500%, so it's much better for the consumer if they are able to find a workroom they trust.  When that workroom also manufactures the fabric, that is the most ideal scenario you could hope for.  Everything is working together and creating a high level of accountability.  You deal with one person who oversees your entire custom drapery order from start to finish so there is no passing the buck.  And since your drapery is literally being created from conception to finished product all under one roof, you enjoy the maximum possible savings.  Our turn around time is also the fastest in the business at around 3 weeks.  Rush services are available.
 

How do I get swatches?

Very important - we strongly recommend you see swatches before ordering, and our swatch service makes this as easy as pie...and free! You may order swatches directly from our online store.  Any fabric you click on has an ORDER SWATCH below it under RELATED PRODUCTS. Swatches are $5-12/ea. initially, but this is fully refundable with your order when placed within 30 days.   Swatches are shipped within 24 hours of your order.  Also, when you order swatches, be sure and choose the FREE SHIPPING option!
 

How true is the color I see on the computer to the actual fabric?

Usually the coloration is pretty accurate, but everyone's monitor is different.  Because of this, we strongly recommend you see swatches first.  This will also let you see the quality of the silk you are considering as compared with other silks you may be reviewing.  And remember, once you order, you are refunded for all your swatches -- not just the one that you choose.
 

How do I choose my rods?

We recommend you measure the width of your window and add 2 inches on either side whenever possible.  If you are running into a corner, this may not be feasible.  You will also need to choose the diameter of your rod.  You should consider the size of your window, the weight of your drapery and the overall look and feel of the room when making this decision.  Big dramatic rooms beg for big, dramatic drapery hardware.  Smaller, more casual rooms would look best with smaller rods and finials. 

HINT:  Remember, if your rod is over 8 feet, we strongly recommend a center bracket.
 

Do you need different rods for sheers?

For sheers, you will need either 1) a double rod and a double bracket or 2) two separate rods with the front rod having a 6-inch bracket and the back rod a 3-inch bracket so that the sheers are mounted behind the main drapery. 
 

How can I find out the status of my order?

Easy -- just log in to your account in the online store, and you will see the up-to-the-minute status of your shipment.  As soon as it ships, your tracking information will be posted, as well as emailed to you.  If you're a nervous Nellie you can always call or email. 
 

Can I get a tracking number?

Somebody isn't paying attention.
 

What is your return policy?

With the exception of Sale Silks and Custom Drapery, you may return your purchase within 30 days if you like.  There is a 20% restocking charge on all returns.  You might enjoy checking out what our customers are saying about HYENA in the Customer Comment section. 



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