Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Greetings

Thanks to Heather at "Lark & Lola" for the use of the postcard. She has some great "how to's" on her blog. You'll want to bookmark this one!

Merry Christmas to all our blog followers!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Norwalk Furniture: Welcome to Joplin!

We were so excited to find out we could carry Norwalk Furniture. Obviously we have limited floor space and can't keep a truckload of furniture on the floor, but we do have room for some carefully chosen pieces. Our Norwalk rep gave us the thumbs up and we wrote an order. Well, our rep might say we wrote an order after about 2 hours of pouring over their fabric! It was such a tough decision to choose a couple of fabrics out of their collections. There is no shortage of fabric choices, and then there's the decisions of nail head trim, contrast welt, and stain colors.

Here's an interesting article about the Norwalk Furniture company. They had actually closed and were saved by 12 local Ohio families. We are proud to add this American made furniture line to our shop!!
They must be off to a good start to get Candice Olson on board. Norwalk has included a line of furniture designed by Candice--take a look at it for yourself. We even jumped in with one of her chairs, the Marlo:

Marlo Chair

Ours is upholstered in a creamy, textured fabric with a darker, antique nail head trim down the arms and across the bottom. The chair is taller than many, which emphasizes the graceful curve of the arms.

Tanner Chair

We also have a chair and matching ottoman. They are upholstered in something you might describe as a "men's suiting fabric", or a "window pane fabric". We had shiny nickel nail head trim added to this one, which gives this more traditional style chair a bit of a contemporary edge. It is really a comfy chair, as well, and is a top seller for Norwalk.

If you don't make it in to see our new furniture line next week, remember we'll be back on January 11, 2010. In the meantime, visit Norwalk's website and see your furniture with your fabric choices before you purchase. They have a great "Design and Create" studio on-line.

Friday, December 11, 2009

To Market to market, to buy . . . .

You Nursery Rhyme people know that one, don't you? We won't be coming back with a "fat pig", but we are mapping out our strategy so we can come back with fresh ideas and new home decor. The Atlanta Gift & Home Furnishings Market overlaps the International Rug Market, and we intend to take a look at all of it!!!

We're cashing in those Capital One points, and flying out in January. If you want us to scout out something special for your home, let us know what you are interested in and we'll report back to you from the Mart, or when we return. We can color check that special rug you may need, or get some close-up photographs of the latest lamps!

We'll be taking in the seminars and any other "continuing education" we can find. It's a hard job, but hey, someone's got to do it!

Our customers: take note of our store hours for December and January: We will be closing early on Christmas Eve and not opening again until January 11. If you need to leave a phone message, that's fine, we'll be checking in regularly. Most of you know how to get a hold of us otherwise, if you need to.

P.S. We are having a big sale on all Christmas items* beginning Saturday! We'll only be opened one more weekend before the big day, so don't wait.

*Excludes Trapp Candles and Jolly Folk.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Curtain and Drapery Hardware: the what, where and why

Who knew there would be so much involved in choosing hardware for window treatments. Well, we did, that's why we're here!

If you've been in the store you've probably noticed the drapery panel hanging by the counter. It changes with the seasons and the store inventory. If you haven't looked closely, you're missing this swing arm iron hardware from Helser Brothers. We've mentioned them several times, and their great service is just one of the reasons. A swing arm rod would work well in a doorway as a room divider!

Another great rod they make is this twist style. We've used it for a cafe curtain and as an inside mounted rod. Notice the socket brackets that we used for this deep set window. Not everyone has windows with this much depth, so we can use a brackets that is even smaller, but still allows the rod to be mounted inside the frame. Many homes still require an outside mount for cafe curtains, and we just request that the brackets be made with a shallow return (keeps the rod closer to the window).
. You can barely see the white rod and finial for this breakfast room, but that was the point. We only wanted to blend in with the white trim and leave the fabrics on these valances as the highlight of the room. They actually had a lot of detail not visible in the pictures: pleated blue ribbon trim on the bottom, yellow cording across the top, and yellow covered buttons at each pleat.

And yet another sample rod in the store, also made by Helser Brothers. This is from their new line, Artefice. Notice the square rings and rod. We had this made especially for the shop so we could mount it like the swing-arm rod: pointing away from the wall. Typically, this rod is mounted between two brackets, like most others. This is an example of the custom work we are able to request from our hardware vendors.

This close-up shows the glass knobs used to hang these over 100" panels. Actually, they are hanging from the posts that were "tooled" to support these drapery panels. It was necessary that they had a 5.5" return (space from the wall to the front of the panels). These were to go on each side of a large window that was already dressed with outside mounted Silhouettes. They were hung outside the trim due to the framing of the windows. A Silhouette has a 3.5" projection itself, so the panels had to hang free of the shades. A very sturdy post was made and powder-coated to match the bronze colors on the hardware already in the bedroom. Very heavy duty wall anchors had to be used because we mounted these above the header! Not visible to you are the soffits on either side of the window! Do you think we had enough hoops to jump through on this job!?

Hooray for the installs that don't require custom work ahead of time, but we're ready when we get to the home. This otherwise simple window treatment did require that the brackets were placed so that enough rod space was available on each end to support the tabbed jabots that was part of this valance. The stained wood rod/finials/brackets was chosen to coordinate with the desk she purchased from us for use in this home office. The client had also purchased a chair from the Justice furniture line, and we were able to order extra yardage for the window treatment.

Let Madison Lane Interiors tell you the "what, where and why" on your next window challenge.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Holiday Decorating

No, we aren't selling clothes, but we are selling jewelry. Our "model" is decked out in her winter finest (actually her only winter outfit). If you look closely, you'll see the glass and soldered pendants we have in the shop. All are handmade in the USA, along with the other jewelry shown below on the mirror. We received a new shipment of Vintage Earth and Gardella jewelry just a few days ago. These unique bracelets, earrings and necklaces will look great with casual wear and as well as your newest holiday sweater! Doesn't jewelry qualify as "Holiday Decorating"? We think so.

If you still need something special for your dining room table checkout these beautiful red glass candle holders. They could be setting with your greenery, or they looking great by themselves.

Or these square glass candle holders---they would be great for a less formal area. Maybe a coffee table or the mantle in the family room. The Trapp candles will fit down inside of the squares (we tried it)!

If your walls are still bare, try a simple boxwood wreath. These are actual preserved boxwood greens, and they need a spritz of water about once a week. We have just a few of the three sizes left. You can hang them together or each one by itself.

We really liked the Casafina white plates as a background for the smallest wreaths.

And we can't sing enough praises of Trapp's Christmas scents! We just received another 4 cases, but they won't last long, either. If you smell something wonderful when you open the front door---you're smelling a Trapp candle!

Here's another set of candles holders. Sometimes "three" just works better than "two" when it comes to decorating. This set of candle holders is perfect for using year 'round. Just change the little candle ring, or don't use one at all. They're even better if you use our battery operated candles.

We'll help you find just the right thing to finish off your Holiday decorating. Just don't wait 'til the last minute---you should be enjoying it NOW!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Living Room + Fireplace + Drapery = Stunning!

Well, that's the description the homeowner gave when she saw the finished product. The room is still waiting for the artwork to be framed, a glass and iron side table, and a floor lamp to be placed in the corner. Things just don't happen overnight, you know.

It's really fun to see where we started. Plans for the drapery panels were already being made:

Many homes have windows next to the fireplace. That can make for some creative ideas when looking at drapery hardware. Even before the crown molding and window trim is in place, we can tell there will be a minimal amount of room above the windows.In the meantime, the finish work was done and the furniture and area rugs were purchased:

It's obvious the room is not finished. Even decorating the mantle won't add the softness and color we need from the drapes.

The client found a blue/turquoise fabric, embroidered with gold stitching. This brought out the blue details found in the rug and furniture. It also looked great on the yellow/gold walls!

We did a couple of renderings for the client, one of them included pinch pleat panels on a rod and rings. After much consideration, this one was eliminated because of the crowded space and the thought that a heavy drape pulled to the side can cause rings to hang "sideways" and slide across the rod.

This was the final drawing---panels shirred on a two-inch rod. The only added decorative items they needed were the iron medallions used to hold the tassel tiebacks.

Here's the finished installation:

The fabric and fabrication was done by Kasmir Fabrics. We specified interlining and the lining is a new fabric that blocks the light but is also very soft and flowing. This combination will also make it easier for the client to remove the tassel and let the panels down for privacy and not worry about the drapery showing wrinkles. Although the fabric looks like a silk, it is made from polyester, as is the lining. The rendering shows the panels with a puddled hem, but in reality, this was not a good idea for a window treatment that may get use. Evenutally, the hem could show wear if it was drawn back and forth across the floor.

The only piece of visible hardware is the tieback from Helser Brothers. It is finished in the same color as the hardware they did for this customer's dining room.

Here's the closeup of the hardware and the fabric.

Thanks again, to our great customer, for allowing us to be involved in turning her new house into the beautiful home she has been waiting for.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Updating a Dining Room

It was time to peel the wallpaper and take down the swags. This homeowner has been doing a total update of her home, room-by-room. If you read the posts last year on "How to dress a window", you got to see the new window treatment in the kitchen. Around the same time, we traded out teal roman shades for some woven wood shades in the living room. Now, it was the dining room's turn!

Here's the before: As was typical, the curtains were hung almost even with the top of the window frame. Not that it looked bad, but it certainly left the dining room feeling smaller and the ceiling a little shorter. Also hiding under the swags was a pleated shade which was needed for the strong sunlight the room receives in the afternoons.

Here's the after: We mounted the drapes as close to the ceiling as we could to help add height to the room. We won't need the pleated shade since the drapes are lined with a blackout lining and can easily be open and closed with the special rod/ring combo we used behind the first pleat of each panel. We are currently on the lookout for a new light fixture, and some new wall decor.

You really need to see the closeup to see the fabric. It is a new one from Trend Fabrics. You can see the pale blue stripe next to the dark gold dots. There is also a dark gold stripe between the lighter gold one you see peaking out between the pleats. Did you notice the header of the drapery is pleated to the pattern of the fabric? We have the custom workroom at RM CoCo to thank for that. Thanks to Cindy and Shannon, we got exactly what we requested! Also note that the pleats are double and not the typical triple finger pleats. This was done to ensure the panels would stack back very neatly and not become bulky. With the total width and the blackout lining, we wanted to make sure they would stack completely off the windows when opened and keep a neat, tailored appearance.

Here's a picture of the ring/rod combo we used:
The pin on the first pleat is placed in the eyelet below the ring and the wand is just behind the leading edge of the drapery panel. This combo is part of the Helser Brothers Drapery Hardware collection. We do rely on this company for many of our iron hardware selections. They are truly a custom company and are always bringing some of the newest ideas to the window treatment industry.

Next time you are in the store, notice all the displays with the iron rods: they are from Helser Brothers.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Tabletop Decorating

Yes, people actually sat at this table and ate a meal under the "wreath tree" we put together with a small tree branch, a sprig of greenery from the shop and 5 of our small preserved boxwood wreaths . Since we didn't have a light fixture over our table to hang the wreaths from, we fashioned something tall enough to accommodate them. The napkin rings were turquoise ribbon with green polka-dots. I think our friend was right when she asked "why not the silver ornaments?" After looking at the picture, you can barely see the green glass ornaments because they blended into the larger boxwood wreath on the table. If we would have had our silver votive holders from last year, they would have looked nice at each table setting, too. It was amazing how much the table filled in after the glasses were set on the table. Glass adds to the sparkle, as does the battery operated candles that were used by several tables---a great idea!

The occasion was the "Women's Festival of Tables" and it was put on by the First Baptist Church of Joplin. The speaker was really inspiring and it was great to connect with old friends and meet new ones.

If you have a tablescape to create this season or for a special event, stop in and see if we have that extra sparkle you need for your centerpiece. We'll definitely have something that sparkles!

Monday, November 9, 2009

A Ribbon Cutting to kick off the Holiday Season!

Since we had never held an "official" ribbon cutting from the Joplin Chamber of Commerce, we decided to do it as a kick-off to the Holiday Season. It may sound early to you, but in the retail biz, you've got to be one step ahead, and that includes getting out the Christmas decor.

We had a good turnout for the day. This photo was taken after the official picture was snapped, and several people had moved off of the sidewalk.

Our Open House was on Saturday, and the weather was almost 80 degrees. We turned the air conditioner back on--high.

So---take advantage of this great weather and get some of your Christmas shopping done early. We'll show you the top 10 gifts under $25, and maybe some unique gift selections you hadn't thought about. Also, if you are in the market for custom furniture or curtains, we are very close to the Holiday cutoff, so don't wait.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Our Holiday Open House: November 7, 2009

If you live in the area, we hope you can make it next Saturday to our Holiday Open House. We'll have spiced cider and cookies and by late afternoon we'll serve wine and cheese! Our hours will be 11:00 until 5:30. If you noticed the pretty silver boxes in the picture above, you'll want to make sure you open the lid and smell inside. There is a Trapp Candle inside, and they are featuring three special scents for the Holidays. We will be holding a Trapp Candle sweepstakes, too. You'll have to stop by the special table upstairs to register.

Many shops are able to "unveil" their Christmas decor at the last minute. We had to "make hay while the sun was shining", and do much of our work several days ago. We won't light everything up until the final day, though!

Well, that fall decor table is now holding all our serving pieces, including the wonderful Beatriz Ball platters. On the right side of the table are some great little bamboo cutting boards that'll work great for your next wine and cheese party!

There's still many special items around the shop that we'll keep as a surprise. Hope you can make it in to find them all.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

From just OK to just perfect: Banding and Drapery Panels

Here's a one width panel, beautifully done with cartridge pleats, lined in a napped sateen and ready for installation. Nothing wrong with this linen-looking fabric---has great color and texture. However, the room that will eventually house these drapes needs just a little more punch, and this window treatment will do that.

To the rescue: a decorative flat trim, a good measuring tool, needle and thread (and a few hours of sewing time!).

Since these are currently hanging in our workroom, not the customer's home, you can't see the full effect. But, keep looking for the "after" shots. These are due to be installed this week, and we are anxious to show you the finished product. You can already see the "punch" the trim gives these drapes.

Here's a close-up of another type of banding. This one has been made from a coordinating fabric and applied to the leading edge and wrapped around to the back making the hemmed edge.

Here's a different view of the drapery panel. You can get a better idea of how banding really adds a tailored detail to a more decorative fabric. In this case, the tiny check helps break up the busy look of the floral fabric. You don't have to use a solid to use banding. It has also given us an opportunity to include the coordinating fabric in the pillows, as you can see in the chair.

One more example of banded panels. This one has the coordinating fabric used as banding on the leading edge and the outside edge. That is the same fabric on the euro shams. The banding was cut to take advantage of both the dark and light stripes in the fabric.

Whether the banding is cut from another fabric or purchased as a pre-made trim, it really can turn your drapes into just the perfect frame for your windows.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Art Glass for the Fall Season

Most of us imagine fall decor needs to include pottery and the usual browns, greens and golds. Just like the table we set up to showcase our own pottery, ceramic vases and tiles. Of course, it is a good look, nothing wrong with it! At least we thought so.

Too bad this beautiful bowl hadn't arrived sooner---it would have been a great addition to that table. We could have used a different throw, a little rearranging here and there, and probably had a little "fresher" look to our fall table. A beautiful glass bowl is really a great anytime, don't you think?

And this gold glass vase with the etched ginkgo leaves would have been another good addition to the fall table. It was just a little late on arrival, too.

And while we are looking at art glass, you might remember our Kitras Glass. We know have a full collection of the "monthly" glass orbs. These are wonderful birthday gifts, as each one is representative of each month's birthstone. Hanging in a bright window, these are a cheerful reminder that someone was remembered on their special day. Customers may want to start their own collection for each family member and hang from the Christmas tree each year, too, but we'll be talking more about the Holiday Season in upcoming blog posts!

Look around your home this Fall and see if you need to add some of these beautiful pieces to your decor. Don't forget that entry table or coffee table. And if these few pictures don't entice you, maybe if I told you we received over 40 boxes of various glass last week you'll at least be curious. We'll be placing many of these downstairs as soon as we find the perfect spot!

Bet you've got just the place for art glass!


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