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Passion for A Pelmet

pel-met [pel-mit]
A decorative cornice or valance at the head of a window or doorway, used to cover the fastenings from which curtains are hung. via
Yep, that's right - pelmet glory there staring back at ya!

Now, wanna know the story behind it?
(If not, just skim through the pics, I won't be offended - oh, but you can still leave a nice comment! ;)

Who among us have not been inspired by the DIY projects by Jenny over at Little Green Notebook? I was immediately smitten with these pink pelmet boxes she made for her daughters' bedroom.
When Jenny described the project as being easy as 1-2-3, I was convinced Avery needed something similar as part of her Big Girl Room makeover.
I figured the most difficult part would be locating foam core board in Brazil. That did require a little extra effort (remember, there's no Michael's or Hobby Lobby down here!), but it was hardly the proverbial End of the Story.

I had been thinking a navy stripe would coordinate well with Avery's bright pink bedding/inky bed, and lucked out when I found some fabric at the same place we had the Chinese Chippendales reupholstered. It is actually an outdoor fabric, so it has a lot of body (almost too much, as it turned out!)

My initial thought was to make a scalloped form - reminiscent of a circus tent
Remember this nursery (by Rhoney Design) featured by Erika?
It's been in the back of my brain.

Alas, the logistics of the endeavor made me chose a simpler form. Among those logistics are one AC unit immediately to the left of Avery's window. Additionally, the windows open inward, making measurement and placement of the stationary form crucial.
Ben inspecting and measuring

This is a good place for me to mention, well, honor really, the efforts of my sweet husband. You see, I can envision a design idea like nobody's business - know
exactly how I want something to look - but actually making it come to life, well, that's another story. Ben, however, can see the mechanics of how to bring my ideas to fruition - and does so with a keen eye to accuracy and perfection. I have no doubt we could make a mean design team, and hope one day when we're done with our Globetrotting that we can do just that!

So...I followed Jenny's pelmet tutorial to a T, BUT I had several other factors going on:
a) My pelmet looked to be significantly larger (i.e. more cumbersome)
b) I was working with a stripe, rather than a solid fabric (always trickier)
c) Said fabric was rather stiff - as opposed to a pliable linen.

I (well, "we" - using "we" very liberally) cut the foam board down to the requisite measurement. I then used a small piece of it to trace and cut out my design.
We then duct taped the whole thing together (classy, right?) As I mentioned, the thing is large, so we reinforced the center point with another small piece of foam core board - to act as a "spine."
From this point on, there are no more "action" shots. Why? Oh, because I about lost my mind trying to line up, on the vertical that lovely navy striped fabric!
First, it gathered, then it puckered, then my stripes were diagonal rather than vertical. I had almost given up (at least on the stripe) when Ben said "Why don't you just cut it this way?" Arrgghhhh!!! WHY couldn't I figure that out? No matter, it worked.
Oh, lest I forget...there's quilt batting underneath the fabric, too.

Ben installed it without an ounce of impatience (mind you, Mini-me was "helping" the entire time!), and I beamed with delight - I love it!
The curtains are IKEA that I've had for years. I intend to trim them out a bit, but was too anxious to share these pics with you.
And last, but certainly not least, THANK YOU, ladies (and the occasional Gent) for all your sweet comments and compliments on the Chinese Chippendale chairs - you certainly know how to make a girl feel great!


love lives in the kitchen said...

the pink one and the yellow striped one is just lovely! what a great diy idea! i need to try it n my mom's appartment ;)
wish you a sweet day!

The Southern Lady said...

What a wonderful idea-and it does look pretty simple. I'll have to remember that on our return to the States.

Avery's room look so pretty, Alison. It's so nice to see both parents putting some work into it together.

Jenny said...

This looks BEAUTIFUL, Alison!! Love it!! You and your husband make a great team. :)

Thanks for the shout out!


my favorite and my best said...

those kick major ass! and i am not usually a fan of pelmets. but those stripes!!! UGH!! there is rarely a stripe that doesn't get me worked up. great job!! and you are so lucky to have a patient husband. i fear mine could do it, just not in the loving, patient way yours seems to do. i can't wait for pics of everything.

Nessa said...

Love the stripes - Avery's room is going to be so adorable and big girl sophisticated.

Karen@StrictlySimpleStyle said...

I love how it turned out. The panels would look great with a touch of trim. I just did a post last week on how I trimmed my dining room panels with black grosgrain ribbon. That would look great on yours.

Rachel said...

I used Jenny's tutorial to make some pelmet boxes as well! I love them!

Linda at Lime in the Coconut! said...

Teamwork! I love it!

It looks spectacular! You did good, girl. REAL good!

Gold star on your forehead! Yep.

bluehydrangea said...

I love it!! those stripes just make it. And I would never guess that duck tape is lurking under that fabulous fabric!!

tarheel said...

FABULOUS!! Oh, those big stripes! I love it even more for the duct tape. And what a great husband. I can't wait to see more pictures of that room!!

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

Oh I love the pelmet. It looks just wonderful, and even though stripes are always tricky, they look fabulous. How neat to have a hubby that can help, that's a real blessing. Hugs, Marty

Sarah - La Jeune Marie said...

Wow. What a statement! I love this.

e.e. said...

so gorgeous! but more importantly, i wanted to let you know that my WS basil soap and hand lotion arrived yesterday and it is IDENTICAL to the old stuff. get yourself a few bottles, it's so yummy!

Katie said...

looks great! and congrats for finding the foam board in brazil!

Morning T said...

YAHOO Alison- it looks amazing!!

Re:Fresh Design Studio said...

The pelmet turned out really great! Good work!

GrannySmithGreen said...

Get out of town! These are great! I love it when you discover you can make something beautiful out of rather humble beginning! Foam core--who knew! Love it!

Averill said...

Gorgeous job!

I, too, have been inspired to create a pelmet for the large window in my master bath (I'm just awaiting the arrival of my fabric!). Amazing what a little design blog post can spark, isn't it? I think Jenny started a full-on pelmet craze!

Carolyn said...

Cute! I think everyone loved those! I immediately sent them to my sister after her post. Did you send yours into her post of reader's pelmets? I think I might need to do this...our windows are so tall and great here, but the problem...where are all the great craft stores?? michael's, hobby lobby..i missin' you. :)

LindsB said...

It came out perfect!! What a great touch to her already perfect bedroom! I still am not over how awesome that painting job came out on her bed :)

Susan said...

OMG!! Fabulous! Love your blog! :)

Susan @

Taylor said...

omg! so you are telling me you just used foam board?? i'm gonna have to check out that tutorial...

nestegg said...

Fantastic job!! Looks great.

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