Friday, December 20, 2013

Snug as a bug, slub as a mustard

Since spending an ungodly amount of money on having the house insulated, we've noticed a drop in our heating costs. The house is less drafty than before, which really helped when the temperature dropped to 6 degrees. The one exception has been the bedroom, where we have sliding glass doors with a broken thermal seal. The old curtains had thermal liners but they weren't big enough to cover the whole expanse of glass, and as a result this room was freezing.

I wanted new drapes anyway and I wanted to try something I'd seen on various blogs: curtains made from dropcloths. I bought the heavier weight canvas cloth in the largest size I could find.

I had to wash them three times and then air them out for about a month because they smelled awful. I wanted to do pinch pleats on my drapes but, due to a poorly situated seam in the dropcloth, I didn't have enough fabric. I had picked up a roll of 54" thermal blackout fabric this summer on clearance, so I used that as a guide for making sure the curtains were square. I have a terrible time making things square, which is why most of the baby blankets I've made have been trapezoids. But I think these turned out pretty well!

They are fully lined, so they're HEAVY. As you can see, "sewing a straight line" is not in my grab bag of skills.

Wonky seams aside, these things really work. Our bedroom is a black pit when they are closed and the room is about 15 degrees warmer. And since they cost me less than $100 to make, I bought a new duvet cover.

Ignore the uneven artwork, I was just experimenting.

I've had my heart set on mustard since before I painted the room. I saw an image on Pinterest of a dark moody room with a tufted mustard armchair. I loved the image so much I didn't even pin it and now I can't find it. It was that good.

Greg really doesn't like this color and I am deeply in love with it. I get it, it's a divisive color. I look at it and see curry and goldenrod and deliciousness. Greg looks at it and sees baby poop and old mustard. Tomato, tomahto.

We both agree that this duvet is incredibly soft. It's Coyuchi organic cotton and it's the first time I've opened a package of bedding and smelled . . . nothing. It's dreamy. I recommend it, if you're in the market for a new duvet (and they come in lots of colors if you hate the mustard).


The last step before I declare this room "done" is to replace the bedside lamps with better task lighting. Those lamps suck for reading or drawing or anything detailed. And since I do everything from bed (I'd cook dinner from there if it was possible) I need good light.

On the upside, Greg really like the colorful pillow I sewed! It has a zipper in it and it's pretty square and I'm pretty darn proud of it. So, are you with Greg or with me? Help me convince him it's good. How can you hate on a color called "slub mustard?"


  1. Oh dear. Oh dear. I love your new curtains, good job! But...I don't love the mustard duvet cover. But what do I know?

  2. In your photos, I like the color of the duvet long as in reality it isn't the same mustard that I think of when I imagine 60's kitchen appliances :-) I'll be honest though...if it's soft and comfy..I can live with almost any color! I'm heading over to that duvet website now...maybe I can finally convince Norm to let me have a jersey duvet!!!

  3. Being a Midcentury fan , I love mustard …not sure about the lumps underneath. And the pillow I love! and the curtains !

  4. Thanks, Jane! I'm having a similar frustration with some new sheets. I think they'll have holes before they are soft like I like them.

  5. Wow, great job on the curtains! I love the texture.
    I also love the colour of the quilt cover. Mustard is great. And it looks nice against your blue walls. I thought someone was in the bed in the first picture of the new cover!

  6. We used those drop cloths as flooring for our outdoor wedding (in Spokane, in December) so I am predisposed to think they are fabulous and will make great any things. As for the duvet I love it, a warm and spicy color - I would be slightly concerned about the dead body which seems to be hiding underneath though. Beware the lumps.

  7. I wonder if the chair was Jenny Komenda's yellow tufted slipper chair

    Barbara H.

  8. Now who is hiding under the duvet?? I like the colour and goes well with the wooden bed. Same with the drop cloth curtain which looks stylish!

  9. I am pro the mustard. It's all about the combo with the blue walls and the red/orange in the pillow.
    Those curtains are huge. I don't think anyone who get it perfectly straight with all that weight to move around. Great Job.

  10. Wow, you never sit still! Could you sell the duvet cover to Greg if you called it gold?

  11. Wait: the room is a black pit when the drapes are closed? Give Greg a flashlight to find his way to the bed. Problem solved.

  12. I used the drop cloths for curtains in my sunroom. I just ironed mine and I don't sm anything. I didn't sew anything and mine didn't come with any unlucky seams, but my moms did.