Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Jackie Von Tobel Interview


Last week I had the pleasure of meeting Jackie Von Tobel at the High Point Furniture Market.  She is an amazing interior designer and has published two books that cover everything you ever need to know about window treatments and bedding.  Her window treatment book has over 1,300 gorgeous full color illustrations.   I bought this book last year and it is the first one I go to when needing inspiration.


Her most recent book is The Design Directory of Bedding and has over 500 pages of unbelievably beautiful bed treatments. It’s full of drawings of  bed coverings, skirts, pillows, headboards and canopies that are works of art.


Jackie has designed a line of fabrics that I am in love with. They are available on her website and are made of natural and organic materials. These are a few of my favorite’s, the first one is named after her daughter, Angelica.  Isn’t that so sweet !

JVTangel              JVTsuz


JVTcirtrell          JVTmoon

She also has lots of gorgeous pillows, I love this paisley one.


What an awesome home office and look at those fancy sewing machines !




Minutes Matter is a design software for space planning and rendering window treatments.  Once the illustration is finalized, simply add dimension lines to create a workroom and installation spec sheet. 


Jackie’s drawings are available as an add on module to the Studio program.  You can easily add her designs and any fabric to a photo of your window.  It’s a wonderful tool for those that have a hard time visualizing the end result.

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I really enjoyed meeting Jackie, she was so sweet and nice enough to let me interview her for my blog.

1)  As a child you sewed draperies and bedding for your dollhouse.  Did you ever fabricate window treatments for your clients ?

JVT - I always sewed my clients pillow fronts, decorative throws and other fun stuff and then I sent them to the workroom to have the zippers put in because I hate that part!  I've sewn many window treatments for my own home but for my clients I always used a professional workroom.  My workrooms always did a fabulous job for me and made many of my most difficult designs look easy to make.  I truly admire the skill and dedication it takes to become a workroom professional.  Without them my designs would remain on paper.  All through my career as a designer my favorite moments were drapery installations.  They were like watching my dreams become a reality.

2)  I realize this is probably asking which one of your children is your favorite but, which sketch from your book is your favorite treatment ?

JVT - The illustration on the cover of my window treatment book is probably my favorite because it shows a treatment that embodies my signature style. I love to layer different fabrics over one another to create a very dimensional look that also has several levels of functionality.  I also like to expose the decorative hardware used so you can really see the beauty of the rod and rings. That illustration has all of those elements. 

3)  I know you just returned from the furniture market in High Point.  What was the highlight for you ? 

JVT - Of course I love the new products and beautiful showrooms but for me my favorite part of market is getting together with old and new friends and sharing stories about the biz.  The Tweet Up at Global Views was very fun and I got to meet many online friends in person for the first time.  It was a thrill to meet you in person after talking to you via my blog for so long.  I find it funny that I only recognize people by their online names.  If they only say there actual name I have no idea who I am talking to but as soon as they mention their web name I instantly recognize them. 

4) You've worn many hats throughout your career.......... designer, speaker, artist, author.  Is there something else you would like to do that you haven't done yet ?

JVT - I feel like I am already doing so many things in my career that I had never envisioned myself doing.  It has been a blessing to have these opportunities but I think one of the most important things in life is to be open to change and to not be afraid of taking risks as it might lead you down roads you would never have traveled on your own.  I am really enjoying designing product and hope I have the opportunity to do more in that area.  I have a new marketing system with Minutes Matter, The Power of Marketing which should be released this summer and new JVT Bedding modules for Studio which will be available at the end of the year.  I am also writing two new books that will be released in 2012, The Design Directory of Soft Furnishings Volumes I & II.  They will cover many categories including upholstery, slip covers, table linens, etc. 


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Ready Set Vignette

My friend Beth at The Stories of A to Z is having her Ready Set Vignette Party so go check out all the pretty vignettes.

I made a trip to Big Lots today and picked up some pretty things for 70 % off.  The lotus votive holder, the mercury glass candle and the quarterfoil bowl were all on sale.

Any time the camera comes out Zoe has to be right there !

I think this lladro statue might have started my thing for monkeys many, many years ago.  Thanks Beth !

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Color Schemes - Gray and Pink

I'm loving the color scheme of gray and pink lately.  Yesterday I changed the colors on my website to coordinated with the colors I have on In Stitches. These are some of my favorite images using this color combo. 

I love how this room is so neutral and just has a pop of pink in the chair.

This room by Amanda Nisbet is full of fun and pink with silver accents.  That fabric makes such a big statement and I love the pink trim on the white roman shades.

The color gray is associated with being timeless and solid and silvery gray is associated with a helping hand and strong character.  Sounds like great qualities to me.

James Micheal Howard is an amazing designers whose interiors are always timeless and glamorous. 

I'm always drawn to graphic patterns and this one is fabulous.  This canopy bed is so different from any that I have made before and the sunburst mirror is unexpected.

What a glamorous office space !  Pink is the most calming color and the color of romance but the addition of the gray grass cloth brings some business to this office.  Did you notice the disco ball ?  Awesome.

Barbie and I could make some delicious cupcakes in this kitchen.  I'd cook in it with or without her !
Mr. Stitches even liked it.............. he is slightly color blind though.

                                                        All images via Decor Pad

I was looking for my old prom picture to post because I wore a pink and white lace dress and my date wore a silver tux with a pink bow tie.  I didn't find it but I found the prom program and the colors were desert rose and gray. Yes, it was the 80's !  
So, do you like the colors on my website ?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Apron Party

    It's almost Friday and I love a sassy apron almost as much as I love a good party !  Thank you Reluctant Entertainer for hosting the "Home is..... Wearing Aprons Party".  I have 2 new aprons that I'd love to share with ya'll.  
The first one is from the Hip Hostess and was a Christmas present to myself.  Is that bad ? Don't worry, I also bought one for my Step Mom.  It's the demi style in Avocado a la Mode.

Here's a close up......  Mr. Stitches and I cook every night, he is an excellent sous chef and dishwasher !

My next apron is from Polly at Make Mine Beautiful.  She is a designer and an excellent seamstress with her own Etsy store that sells all kinds of aprons for the DIY girl. 

 I chose the Green Leopard print one and it has all kinds of pockets and places to hold my scissors, pens, cell phone and plenty of other stuff.  It is going to save me at least 10 minutes every day by not having to walk around the table to get my scissors !  It paid for itself the first week.  I'm so glad to support my fellow seamstress ladies.

Workroom Wednesday – Designs by Donna

I have started a series that will showcase a different drapery workroom each week.  These talented artisans can take an idea or a photo and a bolt of fabric and turn it into an amazing creation that adds so much to your home.


Designs By Donna is a custom home furnishing design and fabrication studio serving the greater Atlanta area since 1989.  Although Designs By Donna is experienced in creating a wide range of home furnishings, they take pride in their outstanding ability to create beautiful treatments for those difficult two story windows.  Ladies, you know you don’t want your husband on a ladder 20’ in the air trying to hang curtains.


Do you have a room that needs something more special than plain panels ?  This panel has an attached swag with beaded trim on the edge.


Roman shades can be simple or elaborate and these have a scalloped edge and banding on all three sides as well as on the valance. 


This valance has contrasting pleats and banding at the lower edge. The custom painted finials are from House Parts.


This is a fancy treatment that has probably the most difficult cascades for any workroom to make. It is something that you would find in the times of King Louis XV in France.  She has updated it with a contemporary and modern fabric.


These London shades are elegant and tailored. They combine the simplicity of a Casual Roman Shade and the fullness of a Balloon Shade.


This pull up swag valance shows all the details like contrast banding, tassel and flower medallion.  A treatment like this works well on an arched window or a window with a lot of wall space above.


Donna has created a slipcover that has an amazing amount of detail.  Notice the pleated ruffle, contrast cording, buttons and tassels. 


Donna has spoken at the International Window Coverings Expo as an expert panelist on Pricing in the Industry and on Embellishing Window Treatments and Working with Difficult Drapery Panels as well as teaching classes on designing and fabricating window treatments at Gainesville College.

wcaalogo-h85[1]         DD webuse

She is a member of  the Window Coverings Association of America, Window Fashions Certification Program, The Custom Home Furnishings network, Designers Workroom Council, and Drapery Pro  Network.

To see more of her beautiful window coverings go to

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Thrift to Treasure

It's finally finished !  Here is the Henredon buffet that I found at Goodwill almost 6 weeks ago.  Dayka was nice enough to feature it on her trash day post recently and she gave me some really good ideas to spruce it up.

I knew I wanted to paint it yellow so I started with a liquid sander/deglosser that was super easy to use.  I already had some gray primer so I just used that.  I decided to use spray paint because of all the detail on the doors and chose Valspar in color bumblebee. I think we used about 5 or 6 cans !  Rustoleum makes a trigger sprayer and I cannot say enough great things about it, if you don't have one, get one !  It will save your finger.

Remember all the great fabrics I got in Baltimore at Debois Textiles ?  I used the brown and white Trink Turk Santorini fabric to cover the drawers.  Just use spray glue to attach the fabric.

The knobs came from Antropologie and are really pretty in person.

We moved the dresser into the guest/music room and I have lots of other projects coming up for that room.  I'm considering making a roman shade from the yellow Trina Turk Sunglasses fabric and a white "leather" headboard.  Can you see it ?

I'll be linking to Metamorphosis Monday and Under the Table and Dreaming ....... be sure to check out all the other projects.

Giveaway Winner

The winner of the CSN Stores giveaway is Libby of An Eye For Detail
Congrats Libby, enjoy your Dwell linen coasters..........

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