Monday, April 20, 2009

Brimar Rosettes - A Trim Odyssey

This odyssey began last spring with the selection of a rose colored silk. Ah, that rose colored silk had been the the object of a long search for the perfect shade to match the flowers in the fabric covered couch and loveseat in the family room. But that was only the beginning...

The design came together quite easily. Three elegantly shaped cornices with side panels, two for the windows and one for the sliding glass door. Beautiful frames for a spectacular view of islands dotting the bay down below, fading into the far horizon. Accent trim to pull in a few more colors from the furniture. Simple - or so I thought.

The next search was on... The ever-elusive trim was finally found in a Kasmir collection, a collection with a few limited items. But there was enough cording and tiebacks to accent the graceful scallops of the design and satisfy the client's desire for trim - or so I thought.

Installation went well. The colors, the style, the proportions all fit the room and the decor. The client was happy - or so I thought.

Followup phone calls are a great idea. In this case, however, the client felt that something was missing. The cornices needed something more - she wasn't quite sure what, but they needed something... MORE. And THE SEARCH was on...

Well, we did discover what the MORE was not. It was not chair ties from that original Kasmir collection, used in a variety of creative ways. It was not rosettes from various other manufacturers in varied colors from ivory to tan to rose to multicolored. And every time we ordered something different, it took six weeks to arrive. The MORE was not to be found in Seattle, or locally, or on-line, but was eventually tracked down by brainstorming with several workrooms. And finally, after about six months of detective work, the solution was found!Brimar rosettes! Brimar is a supplier of stunning drapery trimmings, hardware and textiles. I'm pleased to be able to provide these products to my clients. And for this particular client, the rosettes were the perfect finishing touch, the MORE she was looking for.

Today I attached the Brimar rosettes to the cornices. As we stood back and looked at the finished product, the client said, "There. That's what I was looking for!" Sometimes a job takes a little longer to complete. But we need to go the extra mile to do the job right and make sure the client is completely satisfied.

I'm looking forward to getting started on this client's master bedroom!

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Hunter Douglas Premieres New Line-Up

It was a great day for a drive, down south I5 toward Mt. Vernon to attend our local Hunter Douglas Premieres workshop. The sun peeked through the clouds from time to time, the first cherry trees were blossoming and that fresh green tint to the bushes and shrubs showed that leaves were budding. All heightened that sense of anticipation - what would Hunter Douglas come up with this spring? What new innovations, what enhancements, what new fabrics or products would we see this time around?

Highlights this year: additions to the highly energy-efficient Duette Architella line. Great new colors and fabrics! The sales reps presented an excellent demonstration of the insulating properties of the honeycomb shades compared to a bare window. Pirouette Window Shadings are the newest product offering, with soft horizontal vanes attached to a sheer backing, controlling light in an entirely new way. What excited me the most, though, was the expansion of the Vignette Modern Roman Shades line! A new tiered roman shade with a low profile headrail is sure to be a big hit. The new fabrics are beautiful and coordinate with Fabric by the Yard to complete the room's decor.

Of course, the new sample books are gorgeous too. The pictures showing the new product offerings are wonderfully done, and the Duette book is five pounds lighter this time around!

Hunter Douglas has done it again! They really are the leaders in the field of "hard" window coverings. I look forward to seeing what they have up their sleeves for the future...

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Semper Fidelis

A little more reflective today. Yesterday I went with several of the children to witness our fourth child be sworn in as a US Marine. A proud moment for parents - to have a son put into action his expressed desire to serve his country. A bittersweet moment - letting go of the child you have raised for 19 years and watching him begin to fulfill his dream. He headed for boot camp very shortly after taking the oath, and we don't expect to hear from him much over the next 13 weeks. But he'll be thought of, prayed for, missed dearly, and we'll look forward to witnessing his graduation from boot camp in due time.

What struck me yesterday was the number of recruits that were there, and their ages. They were not only 18 year olds, who had just finished school, not knowing what to do with their lives. Sure, they were there, but there were those too who had a clear direction of where their lives were going, of what they desired for their country and for themselves, and there were those who were older, in their late twenties, thirties, and even one fortyish woman, who were re-enlisting.

It gives me great hope, once again, for this country, seeing young men and women make that solemn oath "so help them God" to be our defenders and protectors, to sacrifice for the common good of our nation.

I give them all my thanks.