Lime & Soda: much cooler already

Sadly, I can’t do a triumphant unveiling of the full Lime & Soda project.

The curtain’s up, and it’s already doing a great job of cooling down the porch in the afternoon, but I have managed to stuff up the curtain measurements quite noticeably, so it’s not done done, just nearly…

Here’s the porch before. During the morning and early afternoon, the sun comes in at those windows on the right. During the late afternoon, it comes blasting in the windows at the end, as you see in the photo.  Added to that, we have the aircon compressor sitting there on the left, belching out even more heat. The place is unusable in the summer.

We put a batten up on the ceiling, which has small dome head screws sticking out at intervals along the front face. If you click and zoom on the photo you’ll see what I mean.

I then put eyelets through the header of the curtain at the same intervals, which then dropped over the head of each screw. I’d have like silver eyelets but couldn’t find any. Yes, I am very picky…

The curtain hangs nice and straight. Such a shame it’s not quite large enough… We need the gap at the bottom for air intake, but the sides are both short by about 3 inches.

As you may remember, the idea for this curtain was to shut out the heat from not only the compressor but also the sun in the afternoon, when it’s low and comes in at the rear. However, I failed to take something into account. The compressor draws air in as well as blowing hot air out.  The intake is on the side that faces the curtain. Guess what… The curtain plasters itself all over the intake and prevents the aircon functioning properly. This being the case, I’ll need to make a tweak of some sort and am therefore not beating myself up over the fact that somehow, somewhere, I’ve lost several inches from the width of the curtain. I suspect I was over-generous with hems and failed to allow for the fact that they needed more than my usual ¼ inch allowance. I know how to fix the problem. I need to sew a 3 inch channel down the left hand side of the curtain, run a batten through the channel and fix it to the side wall at top and bottom, to prevent the curtain flapping and being sucked against the intake. Probably something similar on the other side as well, to hold things taut. It’s going to be an interesting exercise in seeing how much of that sashing fabric I have left!

Meanwhile, I’m enjoying the shade in the porch, and the fact that this lovely curtain also blocks excess sun through the french windows and into the living room. In spite of the sunblock backing, you still get a slight stained-glass effect from the seam allowances on each block, and the greens really glow. Once the size and flapping issues are fixed, and I’ve made a similar curtain for the front screen door, I’ll eventually be able to open those french windows and cool the whole porch down even more. At that point, it’ll be cool enough for some plants, which will really give me a fresh tropical feeling 🙂

One step at a time…