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  • Triple Pleat Question

    Hi, So glad to be back on this great forum, have been away for a bit as I've been concentrating all my efforts in seeking more orders. Things have been so quite but thankfully some decent orders are starting to come in now. I have taken measurements for a new client for 5 pairs of triple pleat and eyelet curtains. It's vital I keep my estimate as competitive as poss. as she has made it clear she is on a tight budget ( isn't everyone !! ) My question is - do many of you use triple pleat tape ? I have never done hand made triple pleats before and it does scare me a bit, ' tho I have deconstructed the heading of pair of silk ones which I had left over after cutting out remainder of fabric for a client's roman blind.

    I noticed on my visit to this new client that a number of other windows had triple pleats ( using tape ). I want the result to look as good as possible as I hope to get other orders from it and I'm unsure if there will be a difference visually. What do you think?

    She hasn't picked her fabric yet, so I took a number of sample books with me to find out what her tastes were ( I don't have my own books, I got them out on loan from a large fabric retailer ) She has shown an interest in two different books - Globaltex Extravagance / Drama at £28.99 and Prestigious /Trinity at £16.99 Anyone know if I can get these cheaper?

    As I have only recently started this small business I have so much to learn and I'm sometimes a bit unsure the best way to go about things to try and avoid pitfalls. I have been quoting verbally before, which although worked out o.k. is probably not the best thing to do. Do you have any advice on preparing quotes and t & c's? Also, I have been quoting on a make up only basis, with the client buying the fabric. Sometimes taking a deposit but saying that I expect payment on completion and fitting of order. My concern is that I could not afford to lay out the cost of fabric for a customer to then change their mind or not pay promptly. I suppose my thinking is that many large retail shops expect full payment before the order is even ready so if big firms like that request payment in advance a small business like me needs to even more. Do you think I'm going about this the right way?


    A puzzled Cat C.
    Kind regards

    Cat

  • #2
    Re: Triple Pleat Question

    NEVER NEVER purchase fabric on someone's behalf without getting the money from them first (cash or cleared cheque/transfer). If they changed their mind, or queried the work once you delivered the curtains, you would be hugely out of pocket.

    I always ask (in a written estimate) for the full cost of fabric, and an additional deposit to cover lining etc. If you do a quick search on terms and conditions you will get pointers on the various tips from other people.

    I once used triple pleat tape a long time ago and was not happy with the result. The tape dictates the size and position of the pleats, and the pleats themselves are not as tight and crisp as handmade ones. Just as much work, if not more, than making the pleats by hand.

    Do you have access to a good curtain making book which describes the method? Also have a search here as there are lots of posts about all aspects of triple pleating. Perhaps have a practice with some lining to try out the method.....
    Louise


    sigpic Simply Sewing

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    • #3
      Re: Triple Pleat Question

      Hi Cat

      I've sent you a pm with a fabric price - With regards to triple pleat tape, I wouldn't use it.. Hand making the pleats isn't difficult and you'll be much happier with the results, as will your client and there are enough people here to guide you.

      Philip
      Have you registered your business yet?

      http://www.ukcurtainmakers.co.uk


      A MyDecozo Directory

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      • #4
        Re: Triple Pleat Question

        I so agree with the above - the triple tapes look dreadful in my view and your client will be really impressed by the difference in the hand heading. Unless the curtains are really short I use 5 or 6" buckram generally. Its not difficult but the most important thing is to get the pleat/spacing measuring correct and don't forget to allow some extra 'give' or springback on each curtain as when they are pleated up they don't pull completly flat. Hopefully you can find a book to show you how to work out the formula. Good luck
        Janie

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        • #5
          Re: Triple Pleat Question

          Thank you all for your replies and advice. Certainly feel much more confident in how I should be approaching potential orders.

          If I get this order, have decided to go for the hand sewn triple pleats. Before I had the benefit and expertise from everyone on this great site I didn't know how to do roman blinds without visible stiching, how to interline curtains or to mitre hems and this will be another skill to learn.

          Thanks agan, Cat C.
          Kind regards

          Cat

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          • #6
            Re: Triple Pleat Question

            Not only ensure you get a deposit, but for all jobs however small put the requirements in writing. I have been caught out big time recently, and last year I ordered clients fabric on the basis of a verbal order, only to find that they had put the house up for rent, and had moved out! I never saw or heard from them again.

            Don't want to scare you, but make sure you cover yourself.

            Good Luck
            Sue.

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            • #7
              Re: Triple Pleat Question

              Definitely dont order anything on a client's behalf without the deposit first! I am happy to pm my t&c's to you if you want.

              Re her budget, dont undervalue your work because she can't afford it! Also, you have to sell the idea of the handmade pleats to her, because they will look better, etc.
              Kind regards
              Pen Harrison
              Colly Brook Fine Furnishings

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              • #8
                Re: Triple Pleat Question

                Thank you Suel & Pen,

                Both valid points, that I will certainly take on board. I feel I have been guilty of being a bit ' green ' in the way I've been approaching this before. More of a ' wing and a prayer, rather than sound business sense. Perhaps a bit too trusting !!

                I've just been lucky I haven't come a ' cropper ' yet but I've learned loads in the last couple of days, thank you for all the advice. Any example T & C.'s would be useful to see ,if poss.

                Cat C.
                Kind regards

                Cat

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                • #9
                  Re: Triple Pleat Question

                  Hi, Thank you to everyone who gave me such useful advice over the last few days. Got the order I was after and managed to ' sell ' the benefit of hand finished triple pleats, kept my profit as it should be and got paid in advance for both fabric and deposit.

                  Cat C.
                  Kind regards

                  Cat

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Triple Pleat Question

                    Well done !!

                    Its good when the advice that is given is taken and it works. That what we are here for...I think. Don't get stuck with the pleats either, there is always someone around to help.

                    Enid

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                    • #11
                      Re: Triple Pleat Question

                      Hi Enid,

                      Thanks for that. I thought I would be the only one on the forum on a Friday night!! Sitting with the lap top, while partly watching comic relief with a nice glass of wine feeling well pleased that I got this order.

                      Cat C.
                      Kind regards

                      Cat

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                      • #12
                        Re: Triple Pleat Question

                        Great news Cat. Well done you
                        Jane

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                        • #13
                          Re: Triple Pleat Question

                          Thank you Jane,

                          Cat
                          Kind regards

                          Cat

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                          • #14
                            Re: Triple Pleat Question

                            Feeling full of fear and trepidation, I am about to cut out fabric for my first pair of triple pleats. I've worked out the spacings etc. and that all seems fine. There are a couple of things I am not sure about 'tho. and wonder if anyone can help :-

                            1. How much of the top hem should be turned down and should the lining be hemmed down to meet it or be about 2cm. from top ?
                            2. When I put in the buckram, where does it get handsewn to, just the face fabric or the lining too?
                            3. When I've finished the pleats, should they get machine sewn down 'thru all thicknesses, down, and then just along to edge.
                            4. I thought I read somewhere on the forum that if the buckram is folded back on itself at the leading edges it gives a crisper finish.
                            5. Also, can anyone tell me how you transport them as once the pleats are in place, they obviously can't be folded flat. This is something I'm just not sure about at all. I've just finished a pair of eyelet curtains as part of the same of which I'm going to hang on Mon. I've got them hanging from a large pole and have ' bandaged ' them and I'm very pleased with how they are looking, but the thing is, how do I put them in the car without marking them with creases.?


                            Sorry to post all these questions but I thought it easier to make sense of this way.

                            Cat C.
                            Kind regards

                            Cat

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Triple Pleat Question

                              In answer to your questions....the way I make my curtains...

                              1. I fold down the face fabric to the back by approximately the width of the buckram, the lining is taken up to within about 1cm of the top edge, folded under and hand sewn in place.
                              2. For lined curtains I use single sided iron-on buckram, the glue side stuck to the back of the face fabric folded to make the top hem.
                              3. Pleats are machined vertically from just below the bottom edge of the buckram to the top of the curtain.
                              4. Yes, I fold the buckram back on itself at both edges of the curtain, but only for about 5cm, you do not want it to go as far as the first pleat.
                              5. When I am ready to transport the curtains I fold the pleats up next to each other (spaces to the back for a pole, to the front for a track) and hold in place by tying with a scrap length of lining. Then I fold the rest of the curtain length to the same pleats and again, hold in place with ties of lining (quite loosely, just to stop the pleats slipping). Then wrap in polythene tubing which holds it all in place and keeps clean for delivery.

                              I'm sure others will suggest other methods......
                              Louise


                              sigpic Simply Sewing

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