We tackle projects that would make other drapery hardware companies run home crying to their mommies. Bob the installer (left) said “Damn, you guys are good!” to which we replied “thanks Bob.”
Category Archives: Creative Custom Solutions
Sincere thanks to Brittany Stiles of Brittany Stiles Interior Design for mentioning Helser Brothers in her blog post titled “French Poles.” In her post she writes “my personal preference is clean, simple, beautiful drapery hardware, and if there is one type of drapery hardware that encompasses all of those, it is the French pole.
Carolyn from Refined Design Interiors in Sammamish Washington said “You saved my life!” after a recent successful installation. As you can see, her client selected very large finials yet had limited mounting space above the arcadia door. When this kind of thing is discovered days after the sale is made it can cause some acute designer anxiety. When Carolyn called for help, we explained in an “It’s cool baby, we got this” kind of tone that we could customize the center support bracket to fit the available space.
All we had to do was to trim our standard adjustable bracket and rotate it 90 degrees. It worked perfectly and did not cost much at all. Carolyn, If your client was really going to kill you if it didn’t work then we did, in fact, save your life and you are very welcome. We humbly suggest that you find a different client though as no one needs that kind of pressure.
Sometimes I have some pieces in my treasure trove, of which I’m not sure where they’ll eventually be placed, but I have a “feeling” they will certainly land in a lovely spot. This Belgium tapestry was one such item. It was a little small so I had the workroom add an aged velvet with cording. I ordered custom iron rods from Helser Brothers. They do beautiful work and made the brackets so that I could reverse the acanthus leaves, from top to bottom. The tabs and rods allowed for the tapestry to be stretched out in order to prevent wrinkling in between. Read the entire post by Wanda Horton….
Our metal artists are always excited when an out of the ordinary project comes their way. Recently we were all blown away by the creativity of one of our California clients. Needing something special for a theater room in an Art Deco home, she created a custom bracket using our Andromeda Swag Holder as a base. She added an adjustable bracket component and finished the look with a playful seahorse. She repeated the theme with tab posts. We can’t wait to see pictures of the final project!
In this dining room, the clients had hired someone else to do the blinds, stationary panels and board mounted Empire valance, and didn’t continue working with her because they were disappointed by how “ordinary” the window treatment looked once it was installed. I can see why my predecessor went with a board mounted treatment; the window was in a weird little recessed niche, so there wasn’t room to do a swag valance on a pole set with finials (which is what the client mistakenly thought that she was ordering). What’s more, there were little can lights inside the niche, so you couldn’t mount the treatment on the wall outside and above the niche or there would be light shining through from the back side of the valance. Mounting the valance inside the niche, as the other designer chose to do, required dropping it down well below those can lights, which looked kind of weird and underwhelming.
The clients brought me in to design window treatments for their living room and kitchen treatments, specifically requesting decorative hardware and more drama for these rooms. I suggested adding some decorative hardware to jazz up the board mounted treatment in the dining room as a low-cost alternative to expensive rework or scrapping it altogether. The clients were having trouble visualizing how these finials were going to look sticking up at the top of the swag valance, so I did a quick mock up in my design software and assured them that it was going to look like “I meant to do that.” I ordered the finials with wood screws and my installer was able to add them to the dining room valance on-site without even taking it down on the same day that he installed my treatments in the other rooms. The size of those finials was perfect – it looks like the valance was installed at that height deliberately to accommodate the height of the finials, and it seems as though the can lights were installed specifically to illuminate the decorative hardware. The clients got a more formal and unique design for just a couple of hundred dollars’ worth of hardware – and I like the way it turned out so much that I plan to use finials that way “on purpose” for future projects!
Contributed by Rebecca Deming Rumpf of Custom Interiors By Rebecca.
This swing rod was designed for a customer who needed extra strength and a hand forged look. Our blacksmith forged the rod from one piece of solid 5/8″ round bar, and gave the 2×6″ back-plate a simple but handsome look by hammering the corners into a flare. You will not find this design in any of our catalogs, but is available as a custom item by request. Just refer to this post!
Jane Maxwell of Maxwell House of Design just finished a project using customized hardware from our “French Pole” line and was kind enough to share her experience……
If you are a designer, you know, that every once in a while, a homeowner is going to give you a challenging window to dress. Of course, a difficult window is never an auxiliary window, or one that hides in the back, no, it’s pretty much guaranteed that it will be a focal point in the room. This happened with me recently. The client’s dining room had a traditional three-window bay that had fourth window around the corner on the next wall. In order for the treatments to make sense, the fourth window had to be included in the bay. In addition to needing a custom bend to the rods, I knew that traditional finials weren’t going to work because the symmetry would be off. Thankfully, I had learned about Helser Brother’s French Poles in March at a WCAA vendor event with Jackie Von Tobel in Charlotte, NC. Jackie spoke glowingly about them from stage and during the break, I headed for the Helser Brother’s table where Anita Boetsma was able to show me the product and fill me on the details.
Now anytime you use a new product, you hold your breath just a little until they are installed. I had just a couple of concerns; would we miss having finials? Would my installer be able to figure out the installation? Would the product look as good up as I was hoping it would? Well, the product came in looking better than I had remembered, my installer had no issues whatsoever installing, and, the finish on this gorgeous product completely complimented the design. Needless to say, I breathed a big sigh of relief, took pictures and decided to share the adventure.
On side-note, I like the clean look of this product so much, that I am now using them for all of my transitional and modern design jobs.
There is an intrinsic value to being able to relax and trust that a vendor is going to deliver. Anytime that we, as designers, can eliminate some of the stress that accompanies our job, it’s a great thing. Helser Brother’s, as a company, delivers beautiful products that do what they are supposed to do, with great customer service to boot. That’s why they are now my standard go-to source for drapery hardware.
Jane Ann Maxwell is a professional interior designer based in the Charlotte, NC metro area with some 20 years of interior design experience.
She is a Professional Member of the Association of Interior Design Professionals (AIDP) and is the current President of the AIDP Charlotte Chapter…. (read entire bio)
Everybody wants to be a hero. And today we are feeling pretty good. When HB Client Tammi Le Nair of L’Interieur Le Nair in Ephrata, PA had to figure a way to comply with restrictions in a historical brick building, she came to us. Tammi needed to install an arched treatment 2 feet above a window on the brick, without touching the brick! Using her sketches and dimensions, Anita Boetsma, Mark Helser and Tammi designed a bracket that allowed her to install using the same holes as the blinds supplied by the building management, on the wood window frame. When they were done, the brackets allowed Tammi to “float” the rod above the window along the top of the arched brick. Pivoting saddles gave her the ability to match the curve of the rod wherever she needed to. And since the bedroom treatment was straight, she was able to move the saddle straight up and down. We’ve been excited about this project from the beginning and now that we see the gorgeous treatments Tammi designed and created, we are amazed.
“I am working with Anita at Helser Bros. because they were the first ones that came to my mind to make something like this.”, Tammi
“I just got my hardware from Helser Bros and boy do they ROCK! My arch rods are gorgeous, I am squealing with delight! Like a kid in a candy store, even better…WooHoo!”, Tammi
“Check out the brackets Helser Brothers did for me. Aren’t they great?”, Tammi
The clever folks at Robb & Stucky in Scottsdale regularly supply our metal artists with special projects. This beefy 2″ square rod is one recent example. The Pyramid finial and square collar combined with the very cool square rings complete the look with style.
Outdoor Living is the hot topic this time of year. One of my favorite outdoor treatments has no discernable function but is absolutely gorgeous. Helser Brothers client Janet Suchon manufactured and installed this asymmetrical tab top treatment to frame an arched window. I particularly like the sheer audacity of a purely decorative treatment mounted on the outside of the house. This picture makes me wonder what’s on the other side of the arch!
We had our collective breath taken away this week by Mark and Catherine Schultz of Silk Mountain Creations in Indianapolis. The road from “Before” to “After” was paved with all of the elements of terrific design. A great concept, accurate measurements, a perfect template and beautiful craftsmanship (ours and theirs…) all combined to make this treatment drop dead gorgeous!
The before shot and Corbel detail show some of the challenges the Shultz’s had to work around. The client wanted the Corbels to be shown completely which left very little room for hardware.
As you can see, the hardware complements without overpowering the space and the panels are extravagantly luscious. Mark and Catherine estimate the weight of the center panels to be close to 100#!
Most of you know that we love to do ride-alongs. They are an invaluable way to gather information and keep a “finger on the pulse.” We were recently invited to the installation of an “Evita” treatment at a salon in Scottsdale… The installer had never used Evita drapery hardware before, but it was encouraging to see that he was quickly able to grasp the concept and had no trouble with the installation.
In this particular case, the designer needed the horizontal drapery rod to reach about six feet out. Evita drapery hardware is probably about the strongest swing-rod system ever developed, but due to the weight, this long interlined panel needed some support at the end. The support greatly reduces the swing capabilities of of the rod, but makes it possible to get the Evita look on much wider windows.
Michael Payne, the original host and interior designer of HGTV’s Designing For The Sexes shares his experience with Helser and the interesting solution to a unique issue;
I recently did a major remodel of my 1926-built Spanish home in the Hollywood Hills of Los Angeles. When working on the design of the new master bedroom I was confronted with the dilemma of what to put on the wall above the bed. With the soaring open-beamed ceiling the space was disturbingly large and empty. I considered a painting or tapestry but neither seemed appropriate. I ultimately decided a beautiful wrought iron sculptural design element would be perfect. However, I was unsure about installing such a piece above my bed in a city prone to earthquakes. Helser Brothers came to my rescue. They took my design and crafted a masterpiece.
This custom hand-forged swag bracket caught my eye when it reached the shipping department here at Helser Brothers. I was concerned about the large amount of tensile stress on a ceiling mounted bracket that would be supporting four swags of an unknown weight, so I put a note on the box requesting to speak with the installer when he arrived to pick it up. We talked about anchors and different installation scenarios and he left after promising to let me know how the installation went…… Well, he let me know alright, here is the photo that he shot and sent with his Iphone from the jobsite! It is a harmless demonstration…….but I removed his face to protect his career just in case