As a small business owner my goal for 2015 was to say "YES" to things that I find scary or out of my comfort zone. Sounds simple enough right? Sure, easy for you to say!
Since January 1 I've really tried to open my mind to grow our business and it's working! When Mary Dobson (or as she is known on social media marythecurtainlady) messaged me through Twitter to ask if we would be interested in having a booth at the Georgian College Design Expo my first inclination was to say "No thank you very much" because Marilyn was going on vacation at that time, we didn't have a trade show display/sign/thingies and well, to be honest, networking scares me!! But I remembered my committment to saying "YES" and I could hear Wendy from Juice Marketing whispering "doooo iiiiitttt" and I did it, I said "YES!".
So that lead to a month of frantically and carefully planning and plotting what to bring, how to pack it all and how to get everyone to our booth! Thank goodness Laura is amazing and is also good at saying "YES" because she did so much to make it easy for us to attend and totally impress at the show. We designed and ordered a roll up sign so the attendees would know who we are and what we do and the folks at Logo Print were amazing and fast and professional. We built a drapery panel display from scratch to showcase our Perfect Panels custom made to order drapery curtain panels which turned out so much better than I imagined thanks to Crystal being so efficient with the staple gun and covering it in record time. I made a couple of aprons advertising our draw for free drapes and we packed up all of our Etsy toss cushions and away we went. As a last minute change of plans I ended up with my youngest son, Sebastian, along (because what is life without a curve ball or two?) so I had to whip him up a custom onesie as well and off we went!
We met up with lovely students from the Design Program and they were so helpfull getting us set up, helping with the baby and taking it all down when it was over so a great big thank you to them!! We met up with some long lost sales reps that have moved north and also some new designers and decorators from the Collingwood area that were excited to have found us! There were also several homeowners who were excited to hear about our Shop At Home service and that we would travel to Barrie, Holland Landing, Bradford, Muskoka or Collingwood. More often than not people were delighted to hear that we could provide fast and efficent custom curtains, pillows and bedding and ship anywhere in Canada for free!
Overall, I'm ecstatic I said "YES" and that it all worked out so well. Next time someone asks us to do up a booth we are ready!! If you know anywhere that is looking for a drapery speaker or set up we are the folks they need! Thank you to our staff, extra thanks to Laura and a big thanks to Georgian College Design Expo for having us! We can't wait to go back next year!!!
If you've been following along as we roll out our new ready made lines, thank you!! Here is a good look at our new 100% Silk Collection of ready made drapery curtain panels.
These panels are made from the best of the best when it comes to ready made goods available and they come with our standard Q excellent quality so you can be sure to be amazed at how lovely they hang!
Our 100% Silk Collection offers 60 stunning colours of silk (see above). Each panel is handmade in Canada in our workroom in Mississauga, Ontario (right on the border of Oakville). Each panel is fully customizable and comes with 100% cotton lining and interlining or soft blackout lining and interlining. What is interlining you ask? Interlining is a layer of cotton flannel like material that is placed between the face fabric and the lining to protect the face fabric from the sun and also in the case of silk to give the panel weight and depth of colour to the sheen of the silk. We never compromise and want each of our panels to be perfect so we insist silk be interlined each and every time for the perfect finish our clients have come to expect from us.
The 100% Silk Perfect Panels start at $282 per perfect width.
Like all of our Perfect Panels they are fully customizable, choose your heading pleat style, choose your lining and choose your length and width. We want them to fit and hang perfectly and this price point is less that what you would pay for Restoration Hardware panels in their same category. Trust me, these won't disappoint! They ship in under 3 weeks or are ready for pick up if you live in Mississauga, Oakville, Burlington, Toronto, Vaughan etc. You can find them in our Etsy shop and soon you will be able to find them right here in our online store which is in the works! Stay tuned!!
KEYWORDS :: style, oakville, mississauga, toronto, custom drapery, custom drapery workroom, window treatments, curtains, canadian, linen, ready made drapery, restoration hardware, pottery barn, linen curtains, linen drapery
Last week we covered how great our new ready made Perfect Panels are doing and how they are miraculously solving window covering issues everywhere and it's pretty great the feedback we are still getting! This week I want to show you our 100% Linen Collection. This collection is just the bees knees! Sometimes a room needs a natural element to soften the hard edges of our finishes, hardwood, tile etc. Human made fibers have their place too but the depth of colour you get and the natural look and feel when using natural products in custom drapery is a pretty special thing. We are so happy to have both linen and silk (stay tuned next week!) offerings in our new Perfect Panels custom drapery ready mades. If you love linen and are on a budget, these panels are for you! No need to sacrifice quality for price point. Don't shop Restoration Hardware, Pottery Barn or Ikea when you can have these Perfect Panels at such a reasonable price!
Our 100% Linen Collection offers 42 lovely colours to fit any colour scheme (see above). There are even some bright colours for kids rooms! The linen we use has a medium weight and has that trademark linen "lived in" look. These panels bring a rustic and natural element to your space and won't ever look perfectly wrinkle free so if you can't live with a few wrinkles try the House Linen Collection! The beauty of linen is that it adds a texture and is versatile and extremely durable and can withstand strong sun exposure. These 100% Linen Perfect Panels are fully customizable and ready in 2 weeks! They come with 100% cotton lining and you choose your pleat style, length and widths. So easy! They start at $204 per width. You can customize these panels further and add banding details for $15 per band per width. Custom drapery with our great quality doesn't have to cost a fortune! Stay with me next week as we ooooh and aaaah over our 100% silk collection!
KEYWORDS :: mississauga, custom drapery, custom drapery workroom, window treatments, curtains, manufacturing, ikea, canadian, ready made drapery, drapery linings, ready made curtains, buy drapery online, buy curtains online, pottery barn, restoration hardware
It's incredible what happens when you stop listening to that inner voice that says "you can't" do things. We always said that our workroom makes custom drapery only. For years we were rigid in our perception of what we could or should make and that served us well for a time. After a while it became clear we needed to add blinds to our offering and much to Marilyn's dismay (she's always been partial to soft treatments, love her!) and so we softened our view of what we could do a bit.
After we renovated and rebranded we really felt like we had the power to make changes in our business like never before and then after meeting Wendy from Juice Marketing Group our inner voice that said "you can't, you shouldn't, you won't" got a big "BE QUIET" and we have now taken a big leap in giving our market what it needed: A truly custom, fast turn around, well price, ready made product. It was by opening our ears to what our client wanted and this is how our new collections of Perfect Panels came to be!
Seriously, we had no idea how much our market was needing this until we whispered it out into a mailing last month and BAM! We've had literally tons of new clients walking through our doors wanting to learn more about what we have to offer! Impressive! This power of "YOU CAN" is really making changes in our business and our first up for the blogosphere is our stunning House Linen Collection!
Let me clarify what I mean when I say "ready made". These panels are ready for you in under 2 weeks. They are not ready for quick sale from our shop and I'll tell you why: We want them to be perfect. We want you to choose the perfect length, perfect lining, perfect pleat and perfect colour. We could have them all ready to go but then you wouldn't get that perfect fit and look you deserve and the price would be the same! When you are ready to order we will ask you all the right questions and you won't be disappointed! Time and again we have been hearing the same response from our clients: "we were so happy with the way it turned out - flawless!"
Available in 20 lovely colours to suit any space!
If you are in the market for a linen blend that performs well, is easy to hang and look beautiful on it's own, is an excellent price point and comes in a bunch of soft, lovely colours then this is the ready made panel for you. They start at $183 per width which is incredible for essentially a custom made drapery curtain panel. It can be made to fit any size window and we can even sort out getting the hardware just right for you! It will have our perfect hems, choice of cotton or blackout lining, perfect heading in whichever pleat you choose and it comes with the same quality as all of our custom drapery - perfect! Because the fabric is blended linen with polyester it hangs without the lived in look of linen and is low maintenance as far as dressing is concerned. It can be made with banding or ribbon details if you so desire for a minimal increase to the cost and it's available in our store in Mississauga, at the Oakville border (email Laura if you need help!) or online in our Etsy shop.
Above: House Linen Banded Perfect Panel in Cotton and Echo
This panel is perfect for bedrooms, family rooms, office areas, basements and dens and brings a custom drapery into your home without incurring the expense of our white glove Shop At Home service (which is also pretty amazing!). We had a lovely couple in last week looking for something better than Restoration Hardware, Pottery Barn or Ikea and they were over the moon to have found us, in their price range, with someone to answer all of their questions to make sure it's made to their liking. It's a huge bonus that these are all handmade in Canada and there is no nasty exchange rate to contend with!
We've really hit the nail on the head with this one it seems! Stay tuned for next week when I cover another one of the ready made collections available now at Q. Design!
We had such a great day in the showroom on Wednesday I just had to share. Even Howie, our shop dog, got in on the fun! We had our very first Brunch & Learn of 2015 and it was a huge success! Every seat was filled with familiar faces and a few new designers and a few that were new to me. It was also super exciting to give a presentation in front of our new ready made cases (see below in the photos). We have been working so hard to get these custom ready made lines ready! Stay tuned for details in my upcoming blog posts!
It was so energizing to have so many people eager to learn about drapery and social media in design that I wanted to make sure that everyone heard about it! I had had very little sleep the night before due to a young lad that is teething so I was feeling a bit foggy at the outset and was worried by Drapery Linings ~ Everything You Need To Know & More seminar might be a bit dry but it was clear after we got the ball rolling that it was going to just be fun and relaxed and everyone was kind about saying I didn't flop! You can see the presentation here if you missed it:
After I spoke I gave a quick tour for the new folks and showed them how all this gorgeous custom drapery gets made and how our process works. It was great to see how many people were impressed by how we go about it as a one-stop-shop model that makes it easy for the trade to have smooth and successful drapery orders! It's so reassuring to hear that our model is ideal for the trade time and again.
Next up we had Wendy in the house from Juice Marketing Group talking about Social Media in the Design World and it was great to see the interest this topic generated. There is so much to know and Wendy makes it all so clear and simple, just lovely! Everyone was live tweeting and instagramming as we went along. The momentum was so strong that Wendy had a webinar to do right after her talk for us and a few of the designers stayed and listened in on what she had to say about Instagram! There was no stopping us!
KEYWORDS :: showroom, hunter douglas, privacy, hues, designer, woven, blind, textures, stripes, patterns, consultation, budget, canada, jacquards, window treatments, light filtering, sun protection, room darkening, screen shade, q. design, check measure, roller screen shade, sheer fabrics
It’s been a bitterly cold and snowy week for us up here in Canada (typical) so you are not missing much! I think I can speak for everyone here at Q. Design by saying that we are envious of your fun in the sun! Bring some sun back with you please and thank you! Those roller screen shades look awesome with the help of your little assistant! What a great idea with unique functionality. I could totally see this kind of blind on a back yard pergola. Worth looking into!
The photo below is a little reminder of what you will be returning to in 1 week’s time. I’m also displaying a Hunter Douglas Screen Shade application. Notice how the blind cuts the glare while still giving you a nice view – it’s nothing like Mexico, I know!
You mentioned the blind manufacturers we sell in our showroom and when it comes to screen shades Graber, Maxxmar and Hunter Douglas will be the brands that meet our client requirements. The great thing about offering a multitude of suppliers at Q. Design is that we are able to find the perfect treatment for our clients taste and budget. When it comes to roller and screen shades, all of these brands have designer-inspired fabrics in a multitude of hues, patterns, and possibilities, including jacquards, stripes, and delicate woven textures!
We have been quoting lots of blinds this year already! It’s great to see that our clients are seeing the value in blinds. Not only do they add privacy, but they are very important when it comes to sun protection. All of our manufactures offer sheer fabrics are airy and translucent, light filtering fabric which provides a soft outline of the outdoors, room darkening fabric dims the room significantly and blackout fabric completely blocks light for ultimate privacy.
We have a fantastic In-home consultation process for homeowners which allows our Q. Designer, Crystal, to bring blinds samples to the home and match fabrics based on client suggestions and Crystal’s expert recommendations. Crystal is well versed in all of the blind options and is Hunter Douglas certified on their products. After her visit she provides a quote with great discounts and it's only approximately 2 weeks until the blinds are ready to be installed!
For our designer trade clients, we have a 24 hour blind book sign out policy which allows designers to take samples to their client’s homes and select window treatments accordingly, if you need help with the products Marilyn can meet you on site with your client to make the final selections or help deciding what the right options are for your clients windows. While she is there she will measure for a perfect fit and note any special considerations (hold downs, cut outs, arches etc.) and this is all included in our check measure fee! To top it all off we also offer full installation to ensure the blinds are installed correctly and functioning properly!
As you know, most of our clients find the full service the best choice to minimize the issues that arise in custom window treatments and we get great reviews from homeowners and designers alike!
Enjoy the rest of your vacation!