Friday, October 24, 2014


Usually when I do a job through/for Cotier it is a custom order for a customer of the store and not for the store itself.  This time, however, I did all these pillows for display/to be sold in the store.

Most of the fabrics were left from other jobs, and instead of tossing them, the owner decided we should use them.

As I love to make pillows (seems obvious since I tend to post a lot of pillows!), this was a fun job.  It's also more interesting when there are just scraps of fabric available and more imagination and ingenuity are needed to make it happen.  Nothing like a challenge!

Friday, October 17, 2014


I've been working a lot with Designers Guild fabrics lately.  Cara Clancy, designer extraordinaire, uses them a lot in the houses she does.

This pattern is called Hiranya, color Fuchsia, and though I am not a huge fan of orange, the hot pink more than makes up for it.

This pattern lent itself well to the double flange style that Cara is so fond of.

One of the challenges with Designers Guild fabrics is the repeat is usually quite large and really works better in draperies, where the entire repeat is visible.  Given that, I still thought they turned out nicely.  And Cara loved them, which was the whole point.

Saturday, October 11, 2014


This week's post is short and sweet.  Both of these 'works of art' were provided to me by the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, respectively.

This is a piece of seaweed that I picked up on Coronado Beach.  I let it dry out.  I kind of liked the look of it better when it was still wet from the ocean, but I thought it still looked good enough to frame.

I carried this sea fan home from Cat Island, Bahamas.  I loved the purple color of it.  I had to break off its stem so that I could keep it flat.  (It traveled in a plastic bag inside my journal.)  Once I got back, I had to let this air dry for a couple of weeks, then it was ready for its new home.

Both of these frames are from Pottery Barn and have just a bit of space between the mat and glass to allow for something less than flat to be inserted.

Friday, September 26, 2014


When my client called, she originally thought she only wanted arm covers for her existing slipcover.  The slipcover, also in white denim, was 20 years old, though!  There was no way to just make arm covers because there was no way to match the fabric.  No matter how close the color, fabric that is 20 years old will never look anything but old beside a new fabric.

So we ordered new fabric.  I'd say she got her money's worth from her old one!

This sofa was already in the center of the room with the back showing and perfect for a button-back.  The husband said, no way.  He wanted it exactly as the old one was, and that meant a zipper right down the center of the back.  Not what I would have done, but I do what the client wants.

There is a table that goes behind the sofa, so it won't show as much as it does in the photo.

And even though they have never had a guest sleep on the sofa bed, I put the zipper in the deck so that they have that option.  Otherwise, the entire slipcover would have to be removed to pull the bed out.  At least it is accessible this way.

The pictures above and below are cushions I did for them 10 or 11 years ago!  They still look great!  Sunbrella is a wonderful fabric!

Friday, September 19, 2014


These chairs literally weigh about 2 pounds each, including their new slipcovers, and so can easily be moved inside to provide extra seating.

I forgot to take a picture of the original fabric, but it is a black Sunbrella.  The gray is just a touch lighter and the skirts make them seem fancier than they really are.

The covered buttons are more than just a nice touch.  Because the top of the chair is wider than the bottom, without an opening of some kind, it would not be possible to get the slipcovers on.

My client, and her adorable dog, love the 'new' chairs.

Friday, September 12, 2014


The width of this doorway/opening to the backyard is 180".  When the designer told me she wanted one panel, not a pair, that would stack to the far left side, I told her it was too big an expanse, that there had to be a center support because the weight of the panel would bow the rod.  And with a center support, half the rings would be stuck on the other side of that support.

That Cara Clancy is so cleaver, though!  She had a rod made with the needed center support and special rings that slip past the center so that panel CAN be pushed to one side!  I was so amazed that this was even possible, but as you can see from the picture above and below, it's all on the left side of the rod.

We chose to less fullness than normal for the inverted pleat drapery panel. The usual is 2 1/2 - 3 times full.  In this case, I made it only about 1 1/4 times full. But because the panel will almost always be open, the less fabric in the panel, the less the window will be covered, and it still looks nice when it's closed.

The stripe even looks nice all bunched up.

More of an over all view of the dining room with the drapery panel shut.

Saturday, September 6, 2014


This bed in the guest room of my client's home has a very vintage-y vibe to it.  Though it looks to be old, the fabric is new.  

I made the 3 pillows - the 2 Euro squares and the long pillow in front.  (The headboard was done by the upholsterer.)


The Euro shams have a flat flange with pleated corners and the long pillow has self-welting.  We used the solid fabric on the back, as well.  The green makes the black and white really pop!

The print on the fabric, not to mention it being black and white, is what gives it the 'old' feel.

Friday, August 29, 2014


Though I've never been a big fan of's itchy, it smells funny, it's hard to work burlap is a whole other story.  

This roman shade is in the downstairs powder room of the house I've been working on with Cara Clancy.  To give it a little more pizazz, I added grosgrain ribbon, which shows best when the shade is closed.

The designer wanted bigger folds, so instead of six inches between tucks, I did ten.  The bigger the space, though, the more of the window the shade covers even when pulled all the way up.  In this case, the view is of the fence and the neighbor's house, so more coverage was preferable.

It is very challenging to take pictures in the afternoon of windows that face west.  Even the flash can't knock out the sunlight.  Hence the side angel shot.

Saturday, August 23, 2014


I did not take a picture of the draperies, but you can see them to the right in the picture below.  My client looked and looked for a suitable fabric to make the bed skirt.  Nothing she found really worked.  Then she noticed how well the draperies matched the comforter, so she went back and got more of the panels for the skirt.  

Getting skirts onto beds is always a challenging proposition.  And king beds are even more so.  I have to say,  I've never seen the job go more smoothly.  Not exactly sure why, but after I got the skirt on the deck and my client's husband came back in the room to help her put the mattress back on, I was on the floor holding the skirt in place.  It never moved, even when the mattress had to be slid over.  Very strange, but very nice!

I do not normally get to take pictures because so many times I simply drop the bedding off and never see the finished product on the bed.  I use duck cloth or denim for the deck, which is a lot more stable than using lining fabric.  Maybe that's why it stayed so nicely in place.  Whatever the case, it looked great and my clients were very happy with it.

Sunday, August 17, 2014


My client has two little boys.  Both when I went to cut the slipcovers and to install the finished product, I had to wade through legos, lots and lots of legos.  And all kinds of other toys that little boys love.

Both of these chairs are upholstered in a lovely damask, a cream colored damask.  Not the best color for little boys.  So a dark gray Sunbrella was chosen for slipcovers.

The good thing is the slipcovers can be removed for cleaning or simply to change the look of the room.

I did a short skirt on both chairs for a lighter look.

Buttons down the back of this chair.  The other one did not need to have an opening for ease of getting it on and off.  Since they are different frames, I decided to go without buttons on the one.

The chair below is the above chair in its 'natural' state.

Friday, August 8, 2014


This is the fourth slipcover I've made for this chaise.  With 3 large dogs, slipcovers are a way of life for Kim Kelly.  And linen is one of her favorite fabrics in the world.

This is a tiny black and white check, though the entire time I was working with it, I kept thinking it was a dark navy blue.  I also kept thinking what a nice dress it would make.

In her house, it indeed looks like it's black.

I did the small ruffle on the cushion in place of welting.  I also made the skirt a little less gathered than I normally do.

In its new home.

Same chaise, earlier cover.

And this was the very first slipcover I did for it.  I do not have a picture of the other one, the one that Kim sent home with me in April so that I could take it apart and use it as the pattern to make the new one.

Friday, August 1, 2014


Apparently coral is the new black.  

Very heavy fabric with very heavy cotton loop fringe meant using my industrial machine.  Luckily, I am no longer afraid of it.  When I first got it, well, that was a totally different story.  Now, I am just glad I have it when I get these fabrics that my regular machine could never sew on.

This embroidered coral (in coral) is a very popular fabric these days.

A herringbone (also in coral) with a tassel fringe.

The love seat, sofa and all the fabrics for the pillows are from Cotier here on Coronado.  The other pillows seen on the love seat are available from the store.

Friday, July 25, 2014


Well, this is not really MY car.  But it is in my favorite color!  I saw it on my way home last week from delivering the slipcovers in my last post.  I had to go around the block to go back and take pictures.  I don't know the year, or even if this is its original color, but I LOVE it!

It's such a happy bus!

 Even the surfboard on top matches.
And the VW on the seats.