Wednesday, July 13, 2011

~~~~DRESS YOUR WINDOWS UP IN STYLE~~~~ Romantic Shabby Cottage Chic Valances

~TWO MATCHING DRESSES FROM ROSS~

Sometime late tomorrow evening I'll be uploading pictures of my wee little studio for the "Where Bloggers Create III" Party.  I can't believe it, but this will be the third year I've participated in this exciting event!  I hope you'll come back by for another visit and see what's new! :)  
~WISPY COTTON FABRIC with EYELET~

One of the things I wanted to change in my workplace this year was the window treatments.  I have two windows in my studio that face north and I love the streaming light that comes in from the sun.  I had an idea of what I wanted but after visiting Tarjay (Target) and seeing what it was going to cost me for four Rachel Ashwell cotton embroidered panels I changed my mind.  Thirty dollars times four...one hundred and twenty bucks...NO THANK YOU!  Especially since I was going to have to cut the panels down...a lot!
~SWEET LACE TRIM~

Anyway...later that same day I visited our local ROSS Store and found the two white dresses you see at the top.  They were marked down from their off-price of $14.99 to $5.99 and the more I looked at them (extra large in size...the smaller sizes were only reduced to $9.99) I started turning over in my head the possibility of transforming them into valances!  For twelve bucks plus tax I was sure I could whack off the bottom parts of the skirts and use them for new window treatments on the cheap! :)
~CUT-CUT-CUT~

Here's what I did to get the look you see below:
 ~I'M LOVIN' THE LIGHT~

1.  First I determined the desired length I wanted for my valance(s) and measured up from the bottom of the pre-gathered skirt and snipped away (don't forget to add a seam allowance for the top.)

2.    I cut open one of the closed side seams and then serged/sewed the raw edges under.

3.  A turn-down casing was then made along the top edge wide enough for my chosen hardware.

4.  Because I had the top portion of the valance already made (they ended up being too tiny for the window) I merely slip-stitched by hand the prepared dress-ruffle onto the existing lace treatment on the underneath side!

(Just a Note:  The Battenburg Lace trim you see at the top was a collection of fireplace mantel runners I had on hand that were gathering dust.  I once worked for a company that sold them and had several that were still unused.  I stitched two separate runners together (or four runners/two for each window), added a casing to the top edge and wahhhh-lahhhh!  Done!  This is what I stitched the dress ruffle onto!)

I have plans for the other parts of the dresses!  In my tiny master bath I do have the RA curtains I just told you about and use them as a shower curtain drape.  I have four separate panels, but because the bath is very small they looked better split in half (like Priscilla curtains) and need a jabot in the middle.  The remaining dress fabric is such a close match to breezy the cotton Ashwell panels that it will be perfect for completing this other project.  

Hmmm...all for less than $20 (except for the Battenburg which I bought on 90% clearance when the store I managed was closing!) :)  Certainly less work and money than starting from scratch!

More transformations coming soon!
Love to you...don't forget to visit me tomorrow!

22 comments:

Ann Nichols said...

Unbelievable!! Really pretty! And how smart are you!
Blessings
Ann

Debbie@Debbie-Dabble said...

Rebecca,
I thin that was a fantastic idea to use the dresses and then cut them for curtains!! Great idea!!
They look fantastic!!
Can't wait to see your studio. I am also going to be joining Where Bloggers Create for the first time. I could not get my act together in time last year but I am ready for this year!!

Hugs,
Debbie

Anonymous said...

Rebecca, your lace valance is To-Die-For!! Just Fabu-licious! You are so clever! Have a great day, my dear friend! Huggies, Maria, SG

Rose ~Victorian Rose ~ said...

If I could sew like that, I too would have curtains made from my old, yet in perfect condition Antique Victorian half slips I still own. I had them in my Photography studio for mothers to wear with Victorian blouses as well with their young children in the portraits. I also had a large collection of vintage victorian white dresses as well...as wonderful "tea party" hats. And even some little boy's vintage clothing.

You have done a beautiful job with those bargins of yours.
Rose

Rose ~Victorian Rose ~ said...

P.S. CONGRATULATIONS for being a three time winner with your studio for where bloggers create.
And I have just prayed for Pam and her husband. I pary all works out for the VERY BEST for them.

Rose

Olivia said...

Rebecca, This is such a fabulous transformation! I love your vision and thrifty thinking outside of the box! You are so talented and your window treatments are gorgeous for CHEAP!
Hugs,
Olivia

Bringing Pretty Back said...

OH! How I wish I could sew!!!!! You did an amazing job and I LOVE them!
Have a pretty day !
Kristin

Marilyn said...

You are just the smartest cookie! And they are so cute. Your great imagination is my inspiration--thanks for sharing with us. ♥♫

Anonymous said...

Your creativity just makes my head spin! Got to be in the genes! Looking forward to tomorrow...
Blessings for a great day, Lisa B.

Melissa/Piney Rose said...

Gosh Rebecca, is there anything you can't do??? I love these!

C'est Moi, Julie Marie said...

Hi Rebecca, oooh your valances are so pretty!... and I loved the dresses as dresses too!... you are such an amazing seamstress, among all the other things you are amazing at!... can't wait to see new photos of your studio... I will be here to visit you!!! xoxo Julie Marie

GWENNY said...

Hello Rebecca,
Your valances are lovely! I love how you repurposed the dresses.
Blessings~

June said...

Hi my pretty Rebecca!
Oh I really have missed you and your creative brain! I think these valances are genius! How lovely they look on your windows. It's so fun to stop by today and catch up with you and see all the beauty I have missed here. I am trying to keep up, but failing miserably. I think of you all the time, wondering how your Summer is going. You are very special to me, you know???

Sending love your way...

Christine said...

What a clever idea and how pretty too. I would love to take a tour of your home.

cindy said...

Rebecca- Thank you so very much for sharing your heart with me. You have been through so very much yourself. I try to tell myself that God understands and accepts my pain and anger right now.

Each day that passes by is bringing me one day closer to Joshua-but then again it takes me further away from him as well.

Enough of me…your blog is beautiful. I wish that I had the talents that you share with us. Have you always been creative and what seems like a very beautiful woman inside and outside.

I’m going to peek around your blog now…
-cindy

Chatty Crone said...

I love that material too - just something special about it - loved your windows.

Hey when I looked that gal up - I did remember reading about her - guess I just didn't know her name.
Thanks.

Anonymous said...

You always continue to amaze me with your clever, and money-saving,
ideas! While I thought the dresses were gorgeous just as they were, they certainly made into lovely valances for your window...I hope you have something beautiful planned for the remaining fabric...
of course, I'm sure you do!!!
Just loved them!!!!
Hugs, Francy

Brenda ~ Shabby Cats and Roses said...

These valances are simply Dreamy! Love, Love, Love them :) I found a pretty ruffled soft pale pink skirt at Goodwill some time back, and cut the bottom of it to use as a dust ruffle on my wicker loveseat...isn't it so much fun to re-purpose things....and for WAY less money...gotta like that!

I'm sooooo glad I took pics of my sewing room a while back for the party, 'cuz it has now been taken over by stuff for the up-coming Baby shower.....I'll hopefully be getting my post up sometime tomorrow afternoon.....can't wait to come back and see your creative space :)

Warmest hugs to you, Brenda

rosechicfriends said...

Hey Sweets!
NOW that's what I call thinking outside the box! I love doing that and it keeps the cost down but gives the desired look! GREAT JOB my friend!

Can't wait to see your big reveal!

Hugs and Love!
Lorena

Anonymous said...

HI YOU ALWAYS THINK OF GREAT IDEALS... PLUS SAVE MONEY AND SOMETIMES USE WHAT YOU HAVE.. AND IT ALL WORKS OUT AS IF YOU PLANNED IT THAT WAY.... TELL MR. AGP MAN... HE OWES YOU A BIG OLE KISS FOR THE SAVINGS... LOL...MY DAD USE TO SAY IF I WOULD GET HIM A CUP OF COFFEE HE WOULD GIVE ME A YANKEE DIME.. WHICH WAS A KISS... DIDN'T KNOW FOR A LONG TIME... I THOUGHT IT WAS A MONEY.. HAVE A GREAT NIGHT... LOHOMA

Lavender Cottage said...

Hi Rebecca
Well that was using your imagination to envision dresses into curtains. I wish I had learned to sew; the machines that do embroidery would be my choice.
Looking forward to seeing your creative space at 'Where Bloggers Create'.
Judith

Deanna said...

Love this idea!!!
Beautiful window treatment you have created. Neat, neat, neat idea to make the dollar stretch a whole lot.
Looks GREAT, Becky Sue!!!

God bless,
d

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