Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Lessons of Curtains

There are some monsters in my house. They are huge yellow, green and white curtains. Originally made by my mum for my place in Brighton, then remade to fit windows in France and now they are in Yorck's room. Despite being huge, they are too small for his windows (floor to ceiling, wall to wall windows). There was some material left over when my mum made them, so I have been intending to lengthen and widen them for over a year. The poor boy had curtains that hungs somewhere halfway down the window and didn't cover them either. Looked a little strange. Well we bought track, hung it and then hung the curtains provisionally. Provisionally in my house tends to indicate it'll never get done, well at least not in this place. On a mission to finally rid myself of all the unfinished projects hanging around, I attacked them a couple of weeks ago. Who would have thought it would take so long to unpick some seams and match those stripes? I certainly didn't. I am thinking about working out how long it has taken so far and paying myself. These monsters are over three and half meters wide and two and half meters long. Handling them is not easy. Add a cat who loves to run under them, a dog who wants to sit on them and a child who thinks the whole thing is boring into that. Yes, you get the point. But I now have some pressure to get them done. My mum is coming soon and she has put the heading in the post already. That means I have to have them done before she arrives. Nothing like a bit of self-pressure to get things done.

These Laura Ashley curtains have taught me several things. One, curtains that are terrible in one room can be perfect in another. When they hung in Brighton, they dominated the living room. I could not look at anyone sitting on the sofa that was in front of them for longer than two minutes. We regularly moved around whilst talking so no-one had to look at them at such close range for long. They strobed after about five minutes. In Yorck's room they are just great. They are sunny and light. Two, even curtains that are too small keep a lot of heat in. Despite the lack of material in front of the draughtiest bit of the big windows, I have really noticed how much colder it is in that room since taking them down to make them exclude even more draughts. Three, Laura Ashley isn't only frills and flounces and flowers. Four, I really don't like sewing curtains.


  1. Buying curtains for spaces that size is EXPENSIVE assuming you can find something suitable or that you like. The cheapest and quickest option is the have a well trained Mother nearby!

  2. That is the snag! The mother is just too far away most of the time! Maybe that is why they fitted in Brighton, but not here :-)