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Thread: Curtains and cushions

  1. #1
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    Default Curtains and cushions

    What is the best materials for curtains and settee cushions? Forgive me as I'm sure there are a bunch of previous posts but half my search results had trump in the subject line and none of them had the word curtain.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    I couldn't say what's best for curtains, but for settee cushions (down below, not out in the weather) I've seen good results with Sunbrella. That's what I'm planning to use when the budget and my courage for attempting to build them align.

    I'd *really* like to use some stuff called "Pullman Cloth", but it's shockingly expensive.

    Alex

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Isn't sunbrella more for outside cushions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pitsligo View Post
    I couldn't say what's best for curtains, but for settee cushions (down below, not out in the weathe uhhr) I've seen good results with Sunbrella. That's what I'm planning to use when the budget and my courage for attempting to build them align.

    I'd *really* like to use some stuff called "Pullman Cloth", but it's shockingly expensive.

    Alex

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    On a sailboat where it gets pretty damp downstairs at times, there are vinyl products that look and feel like suede.
    The fact that the fabric is waterproof is the key to having a dry bunk to sleep in.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    I think the OP is working on a Grand Banks? Sunbrella is a good choice but I suspect there are other fabrics that would work fine as well given that it’s unlikely to see green water on a passage to Barbados or dirty weather off of Hilton Head. Sunbrella is the only material I have any experience with though, and it works great down below as well as on deck.
    - Chris

    Any single boat project will always expand to encompass the set of all possible boat projects.

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Isn't sunbrella more for outside cushions?
    As Chris says, it works above and below decks. I like working with it, building my own stuff (sail covers, mostly), and it feels close enough to canvas to be okay in my book for settee cushions, when I've seen it used there. But I admit, if I were working on something for a boat as weatherproof as a GB I might look for something a bit more cushy.

    Alex

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Yes, sorry these are for a grand banks 42 classic.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    The advantage the sunbrella upholstrey fabric have is that they are more waterproof than standard fabrics.
    Just the high humidity on boat gets into the foam which is great at sucking up moisture and ending up mouldy.
    Sunbrella sometimes is not as nice to sleep directly on, I got some cheapish upholstrey fabric from a spotlight (retail sewing shop in Australia)
    treated it with scotchbright
    and made my own on an old singer. I'm a sailmaker so have a fair amount of experience with machines.
    Sailrite have some good how to videos on their website.
    Interestingly is you can get a singer 201 from before about 1962 they are a cracker machine. the 201p was made in Australia from all metal parts imported from Ireland.
    They are as close to a sailrite machine (doesn't do zig zag or 3 step) and I picked mine up for $100.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    There is regular Sunbrella and an entire line of Sunbrella furniture fabrics. They tend to have a little softer hand than the boat cover cloth and come in a whole bunch of colors and decorative patterns. If you use something else which might not be aimed at marine use it would be a really good idea to blast it with 303 Fabric Guard, a fluorocarbon pump spray which is probably the best add-on water, stain and UV protective stuff you can get. Chances are that if your upholstery fabric is pretreated at the factory the 303 will be compatible with their treatment. This often won't be the case with some treatments, silicones for example.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    The berths in my folkboat were all fitted with boat cover type fabric. Very tough and immune to everything, however, that wasn't so good when trying to sleep on it for longer than a power nap. After a few hours it feels abrasive and hard. For comfort choose something else. In my paradox I chose some heavy duty curtain fabric complete with uv resistant backing intended for normal household type curtains. It has turned out to be a very good choice. Regularly has anchors and other wet gear dumped on it, has been used very heavily, and doesn't appear to have really worn much at all. I'll look for something similar when I do the cushions etc in my new boat. Best of all it doesn't cost much (relatively speaking).

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Our external cushions are all sunbrella. Internal are standard household fabric treated with Scotchguard. This is in a vessel that stays quite dry below - as I'd think a GB would. The cushions for the quarterberths right next to the companionway are sunbrella though - as they will get splash/rain sometimes.

    I will occasionally pull the interior cushions out for a dose of sun on a bright warm day - which dries & freshens them nicely.

    As an aside, standard bed sheets (pima cotton or whatever) get clammy on a boat, which I find unpleasant. We use flannel sheets - which seem to alleviate this. Of course this is in Maine where the evenings get cool enough for flannel.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Ultrasuede is more money but is luxurious and holds up well.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    My boat has sunbrella or similar on the seats/berths. We use regular cotton sheet sets to sleep on, which makes for comfort and ease of washing.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Four things for consideration.
    1. It's a boat, so the material will be subjected to more moisture and humidity than in most houses.
    2. It's a boat, so guests will be sitting down with sand, bait, water, salt, you name it on their clothing and their person with greater frequency than they might in most houses.
    3. It's a boat, and so moves, and so spills are more frequent than they might be in most houses.
    4. It's a boat, so maintenance chores are ever-present, and therefore if any opportunities to minimize maitenance arise, one might consider them.

    All of this is to say, that if you want it to last, pick a marine rated material of some sort. If you will be changing your decor every few years, then just go for what you like, because even the delicate stuff will last that long.

    Kevin
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    And of course, this doesn't even get into the types of foam which can be inside the cushions, some of which, like the reticulated cushion foam, are a lot less likely to hold on to moisture than others, but for a price.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Not that the advice above needs repeating, but the choice of foam has a great deal of bearing on comfort. Berth cushions that came with our boat were so firm that we awoke with stiff joints after a night's sleep. We changed to thicker foam rated at a softer "16" (lbs?) versus the "25" of the originals and they are far more comfortable to sit and sleep on. All our cushions are covered in Sunbrella, exterior grade (thicker and more stiff) for where they get the most wear and exposure to weather and interior grade (softer and thinner) for the more protected and less trafficked seats and bunks. Good luck! Upgrading upholstery is expensive and like electronics often have a significant bearing on boat resales.
    "Be curious, not judgmental." - (Misattributed to Walt Whitman as recalled by) Ted Lasso

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Quote Originally Posted by Breakaway View Post
    Four things for consideration.
    1. It's a boat, so the material will be subjected to more moisture and humidity than in most houses.
    2. It's a boat, so guests will be sitting down with sand, bait, water, salt, you name it on their clothing and their person with greater frequency than they might in most houses.
    3. It's a boat, and so moves, and so spills are more frequent than they might be in most houses.
    4. It's a boat, so maintenance chores are ever-present, and therefore if any opportunities to minimize maitenance arise, one might consider them.

    All of this is to say, that if you want it to last, pick a marine rated material of some sort. If you will be changing your decor every few years, then just go for what you like, because even the delicate stuff will last that long.

    Kevin
    What if it's a house boat?

  18. #18
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Small boats rock View Post
    What if it's a house boat?


    Then its hard to dock in a crosswind plus the four points!

    Kevin


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Interesting and relevant thread on Trawler Forum right now: http://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/s...ric-39515.html

    Illustrates one potential problem with some fabrics (or at least with one) that might not be obvious at first.
    - Chris

    Any single boat project will always expand to encompass the set of all possible boat projects.

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    subscribed, this seems like a very interesting thread

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Thanks everybody, we are going with a Sunbrella product

  22. #22
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    Default

    Before we bought her, about 8 years ago now, ours was done with a suade looking material. I'd never have chosen such a light colour but it's worn extremely well and deals with salt water too. Spills and marks justbseem to wipe off.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    I saw this product on a "Classic boat" you tube a while back. It was 20 years on and looked like new. He was very happy with it.
    https://www.ultrafabricsinc.com/brands/ultraleather

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Quote Originally Posted by cstevens View Post
    Interesting and relevant thread on Trawler Forum right now: http://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/s...ric-39515.html

    Illustrates one potential problem with some fabrics (or at least with one) that might not be obvious at first.
    like this

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    We recovered with sunbrella three years ago and are happy with the results. The settee cushions get a lot of sunlight throughout the year and haven’t faded a bit. We don’t have enough room to store them ashore in the winter so we put a couple of dryer sheets on top of them and then wrap them with the plastic wrap that professional furniture movers use. We haven’t had any problems with moisture. We chose sunbrella for the reasons mentioned above (sand, spills, and salt from ocean swimming, etc.) and it’s held up well. So far, no problem sleeping on it at all (except for those nights when you wake up wondering if the anchor is dragging).

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Sunbrella has a huge range of fabrics. Here's what we've put into Meg. The "After Berth".


  27. #27
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    Default Re: Curtains and cushions

    Not to introduce too much thread drift, but Ian, I would love to see more of Meg M. someday. There's the very detailed set of "Lastboat" threads on building her of course, but I haven't seen a lot since the launching and a few photos during fitting out. It would be great to see a thread on how she turned out if you are so inclined? Or have you done that and I missed it?
    - Chris

    Any single boat project will always expand to encompass the set of all possible boat projects.

    Life is short. Go boating now!

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