In recent times, many more people are choosing to make their own curtains and other soft furnishings using their own fabric. By doing this, curtains can be made to fit a window space exactly and matching tie-backs can also be made to keep the curtains away from the window during the day. Co-ordinating soft furnishings such as seat covers and cushions can be made using the same fabric.
By using the same fabric, you can spread a colour scheme throughout a room and streamline the overall design. Also, by choosing your own material, you can create a unique and individual look for your rooms, that you may not get if you buy ready-made curtains or other soft furnishings. You can buy a large number of fabrics for use in curtains, cushions etc., here are just a few of them:
Chenille can refer to a type of coloured yarn or a fabric made from it. The word Chenille is the French word for caterpillar – it instantly evokes pictures of a soft and fluffy fabric. Chenille can be used for a variety of soft furnishings, but most popular of all is the chenille cushion – a fluffy and comfortable addition to any sofa or bed. Chenille offers a soft touch to any home, and to this end, is the perfect material to use in children’s bedrooms or lounge areas.
Perhaps the most well-known fabric of all – Cotton has a wide range of variations and purposes. Grown in fields – Cotton can be used for many purposes in the home and office, from curtains to blinds and from seat covers to pillow cases. Cotton can be produced in just about every colour available, and it is relatively easy to care for and clean. Some materials use variations such as pearl cotton to add a lovely sheen to designs. Cotton is a very versatile material.
Hard Wearing Fabric
Hard-wearing materials are often used for soft furnishings that experience a lot of use, such as seat covers and cushions. Hard-wearing fabrics may also be used in children’s rooms and kitchen areas, as they require very little ongoing care, and can withstand everyday spills. They can also be used in offices or other businesses, and can outlive many softer material alternatives.
Heavy weight Fabric
When we talk about heavy weight fabrics, we instantly think of curtains and couch cushions. However, heavy weight materials can be used in a wide-range of applications, and can be used to great effect if you want to add a touch of luxury to a room. Heavy weight curtains can be very practical, as they often do not need linings – this cuts down on the cleaning and care of the curtains. Heavy weight fabrics are great for straight, simple designs.
Jacquard weaving using a loom involves the programmed raising of each warp thread independently of the others. This process allows for greater versatility in the weaving process, offers the highest level of warp yarn control, and can create stunning designs. The design commonly known as ‘Jacquard’ is a formation of swirly, flower like prints – used on a variety of soft furnishings, including bedding, cushions and curtains. It can be produced in a number of colours, and adds a touch of elegance to a room.
Linen is a textile made from the fibres of the flax plant. It is relatively labour-intensive to make, but when it is made into clothing, it is known for it’s coolness in hotter climates. Linen can be used for a number of soft furnishings including curtains, blinds and cushions. Linen can often display a hand-made look, with fleck detailing, so it can help to add a homely feel to a room.
Printed fabric has increased in popularity in recent years. A wide range of printed fabrics are now available, from generic patterns to intricate animal or plant themes. Printed fabrics are ideal if you want to create a unique item, and they can be used on any soft furnishing, from curtains to seat covers.
Satin usually has a glossy surface and a dull back. It is the result of a weaving technique that forms a minimum number of interlacings in a fabric. Satin can be used to add a luxurious feel to any room, it is ideal for small soft furnishings, but should be avoided in high-traffic areas, such as kitchens and conservatories, as it is very delicate.
Sheer fabric by definition is slightly transparent. This kind of fabric is well suited to curtains, as with Voile, it creates a lightweight and floaty look for windows. Sheer fabrics can sparkle slightly, catching the light well. Sheer fabric can be draped on window areas, and different colours can be combined with ease.
Silk is a natural protein fibre - some forms of it can be woven into textiles. The result is a sumptuous and luxurious item. Silk is often used on bedding and cushions to bring out the colours and add elegance to soft furnishings. Silk is best suited to bedroom or lounge areas, as it is a very delicate material. Silk is often added to cushions and curtains in the form of an embellishment.
Soft and relatively durable, velvet fabric has a number of uses in the home. It can be used for curtains, cushions, beddings and even seat covers. Velvet looks great in rich dark colours such as black, charcoal and purple. There are different types of velvet, and the more plush varieties are often used in throws and curtains.
Voile is a lightweight woven fabric, it is usually made of 100% cotton or cotton blends including linen or polyester. The term ‘Voile’ is French, meaning veil. This is due to its lightweight quality. Voile works very well on a number of draping projects, and it is often used on a variety of soft furnishings, including curtains. Voile curtains are floaty and light - they are often used in hotter climates, to cover windows, while maintaining an airy feel.