Measure Twice, Cut Once

National corporate companies have come to be known for having to import labor or export their manufacturing to gain the profit they desire for shareholders and to put more products in the hands of more numbers of consumers.

This means that there can be communication issues.

A picture speaks a thousand words.

Numbers are pretty much the same universally, another of the beautiful things about the language of Math.

Arrows and asterisks  can imply many things but usually get right to some point. Usually something like, “pay close attention here” ***.

It has been estimated that a custom drapery order can go through 12 – 15 different hands. (sometimes more)

(1) First, the Designer measures the windows and often does all the calculations to come up with an initial estimate for the client to approve for the sale.

(2) Sometimes she will need an installer to revisit (with her) the client to involve his special expertise. A window can be too tall or wide for one person to measure accurately. Some Designers just prefer not to take the risks involved for taking responsibility or haven’t been adequately trained on all of the nuances of the smallest detail issues of placement and installation.

Every company has their own way of doing things. Very often, Designer’s haven’t gone through all the standards of measuring, established rules and regulations (as well as the “exceptions to the rules”). Details, for instance, such as how far above the opening the rod or top of the drapery should be placed.

(3) From that point, it usually needs to be put into a computer system to initiate the order. (There may still be companies who have a paper system, most are computer.)

(4,5,6,) Vendors are then notified for the fabric and lining, hardware, and fabrication orders to be started processing. Someone in each of those entities will input them according to their standards.

(7,8) Someone else in rods and fabrics will manage getting the orders packaged and ready to ship.

(9, 10, 11) Top treatment, panels, accessories….etc will all be fabricated, sometimes traveling through several hand each in their specific areas. One person may construct a wooden box for a cornice and someone else in that department will apply the fabric(s), trim(s), etc.

(12) Someone will then get the completed order ready to package and ship to the Designer’s location.

(13) Someone at the Designer’s location will inspect and receive and locate that order and then

(14) The data person will notify and schedule the order to be installed.

(15) The installer will take the order out and install the treatment. It is highly advisable for the Designer to be on the job at the same time as the installer. We will get into the details of that at a different time. (each of these hands can misinterpret data in any number of ways. Open dialog and effective communication methods are critical to minimize confusion and errors.)

A picture speaks a thousand words.

The work involved in measuring and articulating this amount of detail for the workroom and installer’s is excruciating. It is a true sense of accomplishment when the end result turns out perfect, exactly as imagined and the customer is ecstatic!!!.

This order was produced many years ago as is evident by the technology; but the old adage prevails, “Measure twice, cut once.”

It doesn’t hurt if a talent for drawing can help the visualization process as well. Designers, especially, function pretty exclusively in the right brain hemisphere. That is why the number and analytical procedures can be so excruciating; however, it is well worth the pain.

It was installed in the early 1990’s. It was a simple “casement” fabric, with a simple, loose weave that managed to look like raw silk. The “heavy brush fringe trim” and the gorgeous “tassel ties” doubled the cost of the treatment. The casement offset the overall cost as it prices at the lower scale of fabric choices. The marriage of the two produced a treatment that stands the test of time.

Don’t you think?

(there is a better picture of this somewhere…where did that pack-rat put it…?! hmmmm…check back, we’ll find it.)





About Ms. Jackie

Baby Ms. Jackie SpoolTeacher with Handsome Daddy.

Ms. Jackie of all Trades hung out with the adults when she was young. She thought they had all the answers. They were always making or building something, and that just simply fascinated her.

It didn’t make her very popular with her peer group though. She was considered a “Narc.” and was suspect of telling the adults all of their secrets. (Which she kinda did. She was also considered a “goody-two-shoes”, which she promptly got over upon leaving home at age 19.)

That was just fine with Ms. JoaT. She was kind of a loner and enjoyed her own company anyway.

The only thing she didn’t get very excited about was cooking. (she now supposes that is one of the reasons Mr. Right didn’t show up) (yet!) She is a good cook, however, whenever she decides to create in that arena; but she just didn’t get excited about making that a mission to prove her prowess as a contender in life. Drilling, sawing, working with machines…that was something to master. Drafting, planning…cool! Cooking, not so much. Too many dirty dishes.

She has been somewhat of a skippy doodlier. As soon as she can see the big picture, she tends to get bored and wants a new challenge. She has finally seen the light and values completing the task; but she can’t tell you how many projects sat in near completion until the day she finally un-pack-ratted them.

Ms. Jackie of all Trades is the alter ego of Ms. SpoolTeacher. Since spooling around is just one of the many trades she knows, she thought she better open more space for dialog in other of her specialties. We’ll have to keep an eye on her and see if it isn’t just a case of the boredoms. Let’s see what she comes up with here and if she neglects anything on the way.

Summer Art Scholarship Academy of Art, San Francisco.

That was the year of True Freedom.