I often tell people fabric collections are kind of like the "Garanimals" (remember them?!) of the sewing world. If you stay within a designer's collection, you can be more confident everything will look great together. Many sewers mix between collections all the time, especially quilters. However, it can be intimidating, and the results can be less than stellar without a rationale for making choices. But, when done successfully, it is certainly possible to combine designers and collections to come up with a wonderfully unique look. In fact, our Romantic Bedroom Retreat series with Rowan & FreeSpirit Fabrics bends and perhaps breaks a few "rules" of mixing patterns and color. For an eclectic room like we've built, this is not only okay, it may be the only way to reach your goal. In fact, it's okay on many levels. If you have the belief and courage to do this successfully, you can create something that far exceeds what you would get if you strictly followed all the rules. From an entire room to an individual project, whatever you're working on, having the confidence to look at all the possibilities gives you wide-open potential for creativity.
We sat down with our friends at Rowan & Free Spirit several months ago to look through the dozens and dozens of beautiful collections on their drawing board. Each one seemed more wonderful than the next, and we were having a heck of a time narrowing the field for our upcoming series. Finally, we asked, "Why not widen the field?" Why not give our Sew4Home visitors the tools, inspiration and confidence to mix and match designers, fabrics and substrates (cotton versus voile versus laminate, etc.)?! The resulting blend could create a special kind of beauty within a single project or an entire room." This was the inspiration for the Romantic Bedroom Retreat series with Rowan & FreeSpirit Fabric: nine tutorials, five techniques and one Great Giveaway. Three weeks of beauty and imagination. We start today with a set of lovely layered curtains and a tasseled valance. It's a richly elegant look that is actually quite easy to make. The four panels and the valance are hung on a standard double curtain rod, and the panels are held in place with conventional tie-back hooks. What a great way to turn a plain wall into a picturesque backdrop for your bed!