Saturday, December 31, 2011

Warm Room Curtain

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This doorway separates the living room from my work room.  During the cold weather months, we light the fire in the living room every day and hole up in there, watching television all squashed together on the couch, or I sit in the chair in the corner and play with yarn.  Sometimes they turn off the TV and just watch me knit.  I know!  It is that fascinating.  Awhile back, I was sitting there, starring in The Yarn Show and shivering, and it occurred to somebody to hang a blanket over the doorway, to trap in the heat.  Dean found a curtain rod in the attic and hammered it up there, and we threw an old coverlet over the bar, and it quickly became obvious that this is the thing to do in a New York winter.  It was so cozy.  (You mean I don’t have to wear long underwear in the house?)  The living room turned tropical.  We never wanted to leave it.  We ran to the kitchen for snacks and then hurried back to the warm room, and everyone else yelled, “Shut the curtain!”  The warm room became home base for the months between Christmas and Easter, and we lay on the rug in front of the fire, playing board games and watching all the Lord of the Rings movies in a row.  We napped together in a big pile, like hamsters.  The teenagers hung out with us in there, because it was the nicest, warmest, coziest place in the house.  That curtain brought us together as a family.  I cannot overstate this.  It did, a blanket hanging over a curtain rod made my teenage children spend time with me.   I just realized that, just now. 

So it stayed there all winter.  That coverlet was pretty ugly, though, so this year I got around to making a real curtain.

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I pieced 4” fabric squares into 15 columns x 22 rows, and backed it with a thrifted bed sheet.  This had to look good on both sides, and I loved the soft tiny roses on white for the flip side, the warm room side.  I didn’t use any batting, since I wanted the light to filter through it a little, and I also didn’t want the weight of it to bend the curtain rod.  I laid the top and backing out on the floor with the right sides together, tucked some folded lengths of grosgrain ribbon along the top edge and pinned it. Then I stitched all the way around, leaving an opening at the bottom for turning.   That’s it, there’s no quilting. 

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When spring comes, I’ll take it down, fold it up and lay it on the shelf, and I’ll be so glad because the house will feel huge again, and lighter, and the kids will retreat again to their lairs.  Or maybe they won’t. 

14 comments:

  1. STINKIN' LOVE this idea!!!! We too hole up in the family room, where the fireplace roars. Although, it is in So. Cal, not New York! Different weather!!! I LOVE the curtain you pieced! Love it! Didn't know you had kiddos!!

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  2. That is SO brilliant! Pretty and functional. It must have magic in it to keep the teenagers nearby.:)

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  3. Love your curtain! I'm glad it had the serendipitous effect of family togetherness. Your house is so peaceful looking. The furthest north I've ever lived is northeast Tennessee, but we did have to wear long underwear in the winter -- we had no fireplace and the heat was just those little electric wall heaters that only warmed you if you were standing right in front of them.

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  4. sooooo pretty and cheery and cozy!!!

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  5. What a lovely post, I love to think of you all huddled up and cozy together. Happy New Year to you and all your family.
    Hugs to you,
    Meredith

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  6. looks great I had to laugh at the 'Yarn Show' I know what you mean, when I stitch or knit or whatever I always seem to have an audience too!
    Happy New Year to you...
    Sue

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  7. Kristen ... I seriously LOVE your house!!!! Can I just move in with you???? Now I need to find a doorway that needs a Warm Room Curtain. =)

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  8. What a great idea! It just looks cozy and inviting, and how great is it that your knitting becomes an exhibition for the family?

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  9. Genius!!! I have a similar doorway in my house so will definitely be giving it a try. Happy New Year!!! xxx

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  10. I LOVE that curtain! Brings an extra bit of charm to your already cozy abode. Warm wishes and blessings, Tammy

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  11. I have just the same problem with my living room which has 3 door ways coming off it, yet only one door. We yell out just as you did to "shut the door" The logistics are a bit tricky though as one doorway leads to an alcove where my cats are fed which could prove difficult and the other leads to my kitchen which has a step up. I have fears of tripping over the curtain while carrying hot food. There is also much needed light coming through too.

    I would love a curtain like yours though as it is beautiful. Good to know that it does the job too. I think my solution is to move!

    I do enjoy your writing - very amusing!
    Sara

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  12. Your blog is lovely,i love your home and patchwork curtain ,its so pretty and practicalxxxxxx

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  13. What a great idea and the curtain looks beautiful.

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  14. Very sweet story and very pretty curtains!

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