Currently under construction

    Before we start any cornice, headboard, or lambrequin project we must figure how much fabric will be needed.  There are several things  we need to know such as the vertical and horizontal repeats in the pattern, the width of the fabric, whether it is a straight across or drop match and whether or not the fabric can be turned on it's side (railroaded) and applied to the cornice without seams.

    Let's begin with some definitions:
       Vertical Repeat- As you look at the fabric coming off a bolt measure the distance between the same point of the pattern (say the top of a pink flower) as you go up the bolt.  Is it fifteen inches from the top of the pink flower to the top of the identical pink flower just above it on the bolt?  If you have a fabric sample from a book this vertical repeat will be listed on the back of the tag.

       Horizontal Repeat- As you look across the width of the fabric on the bolt what is the distance from that same point on the pink flower to an identical pink flower across from it horizontally?  Usually there will be at least two repeats across the width and if the fabric width is 54" then with two repeats they would each be 27".

       Fabric Width- Pretty much self explanatory and fabric is usually 54" or 48" wide measured at the point where you would match the pattern.   Outside of this matching point is the 'selvage edge', an inch or two of extra fabric with no pattern on it.  This might bring the total width of the fabric to 56 or 57 inches but only a usable amount of 54"

       Drop Match- On most fabrics you will find patterns with matching points for your seam straight across the fabric but sometimes the match is halfway down the vertical repeat.  The drop match creates an overall look that is less uniform in appearance.

       Railroaded Fabric- Solid fabrics (no pattern) can be turned on their side and applied to a cornice with no seams.  Also many fabrics such as upholstery fabrics are marked "shown railroaded" on the tag.  With most cornice boards you can get two or three cuts out of a width of fabric (i.e. three 18" cuts or two 27" cuts out of a 54" width).  The end result is the fabric required to make the cornices is quite often the same whether seamed or railroaded.