Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Taking it up a notch

Did you make New Year's resolutions this year?  Have you broken them already?  I know common wisdom is to set goals, make a plan to achieve them, and follow-up to assess and change course if necessary.  Often the only thing that ever happens is making that resolutions list.  Why not change your approach and take it up a notch?  Jack Dempsey, a business consultant, defines taking it up a notch as changing one or two things that will make a difference in the outcome.  Change one thing.  That doesn't sound too hard, does it?  Below are examples of three projects where the designer and I changed one thing to really take it up a notch.

Project #1
The plan for the first project was to use ready made panels to make stationary relaxed roman shades. Relaxed romans are a very versatile top treatment.  The flat "picture area" shows off the fabric motif and the soft, curved hemline looks great with or without trim.  The ready made panels were a black and white buffalo check to coordinate with the MacKenzie-Childs tile accents in the kitchen.  The roman would have looked good with the check cut straight up and down, but by changing to a bias cut, the relaxed roman really has spark and personality.  

Project #2
The second project was a box pleat valance out of a striped fabric for a young boy's room.  The box pleat valance is a classic design that will continue to look good as the boy gets older.  When laying out the fabric to decide on the pleating strategy (size and number of "boxes"), the width of the window and the horizontal repeat of the stripe together were camouflaging the boxes making it look like a flat valance.  The valance lost all the interest and depth you get with a box pleat.  We decided to change the orientation of the stripe on the inside of the pleats.   The end result is a valance with just a hint of whimsy hidden in the pleats and all the appeal and depth of a box pleat.

Project #3
The third project involved this beautiful embroidered fabric.  The designer bought only 1 yard because of price. Two of the embroidered medallions were used for the fronts of pillows in the living room and we wanted to use the remainder for a cornice in the entryway.  Rather than use the remaining fabric to upholster a straight cornice, our change was to use less fabric!  We used a single medallion and changed the bottom shape to highlight the medallion.  With this strategy we were even able to make a second cornice for the stairwell.   

If you have broken your New Year's resolutions already, why not adopt the "taking it up a notch" approach for 2014.  I know it works with window treatment design.  It will work for your business and personal goals, too.  Change just one thing.  You can do it!

E-mail me at peggy@parkwaywindowworks.com and let's take it up a notch on your next project. 


  1. Peggy, as always, your finishing touches are awesome and make the difference between a nice treatment and an awesome one!

  2. Love your unique look at the fabrics in use. Great creativity.