They say, when one door closes another opens. For Donna Fadal of D. Fadal Designs that is truly the case. When her days as a radio station general manager were waning, due to corporate buyouts and downsizing, Fadal, who had collected stacks of fabrics she loved, realized that she would enjoy making the same type of designer pillows she saw in showrooms.
She hired a former radio employee, Nancy Juckem, a sewing wizard, bought a $99 Singer sewing machine, and went to work at her breakfast room tables creating designer pillows. After the first showing at the Dallas Market Center, the company took on a life of its own when clients asked her to create bedding to go with the pillows, then window treatments, which then snowballed into more custom work.
Today, Fadal’s company completes work for major corporations and residential homes, and works with interior designers in Dallas as well as across the United States and parts of Mexico.
D. Fadal is known for offering concept to completion services. Can you describe what that consists of for a client?
The majority of our clients are interior designers, so we begin with the measure, then fabrication and installation. For those without the benefit of a designer, we help interpret their vision of what they want and offer ideas as to how to get there. We have helped create a dreamy bedroom, a dramatic dining room and so much more. It truly is limitless what we can create for our clients.
What is the complete scope of the services you provide?
Besides the fabrication of draperies and bedding, we also offer custom furniture, upholstery, wall coverings, sheets and towels. But the most important thing we offer is attention to detail. It is this focus on the finer points that makes me most proud of our work. From the quality sewing to the choice of trims and fabrics, we strive for highest quality in every detail.
How did you first get involved in the design industry?
I first became involved because of my love for textiles. I would go fabric shopping like most women go shoe shopping. Fabric is such art, and I collected yards and yards, thinking, someday, I would find a use for them. Eventually, I did!
What do you love most about your work?
I take great pride in our work and like to say we are making Dallas more beautiful, one room at a time. This is not to say the work for our out-of-state and Mexican clients is any less important. The fact that I get to wake up every day and get to work with beautiful fabrics and a staff that is dedicated to excellence, performance and customer service, that is a truly happy life to live.
What has been your greatest workroom challenge? How did you overcome it?
A designer once changed the center of a fabric with double borders for three Roman shades of different sizes for one bay window. To get them all to match using only half the fabric, we had to “cut and paste” photos of the fabric and put them together like a puzzle.
How does having a full-service workroom, as well as a showroom, provide greater customer service for your clients?
We are able to provide onestop shopping, which saves our designers precious time. We recently finished a ranch in West Texas where our clients not only selected the bedding, drapery and hardware, as well as headboard designs and the fabrics, but also the sheets, towels, pillows and blankets, and wall covering. We were easily able to complete all of the work requested. This saved the designer on the project from having to run around town going to multiple vendors. The savings in time alone was enormous and the designer was extremely grateful to us.
What trends do you see taking place in drapery and bedding?
For quite a while now, we have seen a trend toward the “cleaner the better,” using natural fabrics and neutral colors. Now we are beginning to see more use of color and trims.
What do you wish clients knew and understood about fabric selection and design? We have some pretty savvy designers we are fortunate to work with. We only have to remind them once and a while about the importance different linings play and the pairing of fabrics of different weights.