I get a lot of e-mail and comments asking questions, but the most common one I receive is, “Where did you get your curtains?” Since I originally posted about them over a year ago (Has it been that long?), I decided to share the tutorial on how to make them again.
When I was looking for a fabric about 18 months ago, I wanted a large-scaled paisley print in blue and white. Well, I didn’t find it, but I found this Waverly print and thought it would read the way I wanted it to. It was even better and, a year later, I still love them. They have been the backdrop of many photo shoots and have become a bit of a trademark of my style.
Here is the original tutorial I shared last July…
Don’t be scared if you’re new to sewing. If you can cut, measure, and sew a (semi) straight line, you can make these. They are very forgiving.
First of all, these curtains are “dummy panels”, which means they are non-functioning drapes. My fabric is 58″ wide and that was ample for my windows. If you need the curtains for privacy, you’ll want to measure to make sure they will close and provide you full coverage.
Cut your fabric to the desired length. I wanted to hang my curtain rod at 88″ from the floor, so I cut the fabric to 94″ long in order to leave enough fabric for a hem, seam allowances, and a 2″ ruffle at the top. Lay your fabric out on the floor with the pattern facing up. Put your lining fabric on top of the curtain fabric with the right side facing down. I used a twin flat sheet that I purchased at Wal-Mart for $3.00. Smooth the fabrics out and line up the edges. I then cut the sheet/lining to match the curtain fabric. Pin the top and two side edges together, leaving the bottom open. Imagine you’re sewing a huge pillow case. OK?
(There’s my old watermark!)
Sew along the two sides and top, again, leaving the bottom open. It’s OK if your sewing is not perfectly straight. Just do your best.
Now, turn your curtains right-side-out and press the seams. (Sorry for the blurry picture. Do you know how hard it is to take a picture with your left hand while you’re ironing with your right? Is that an Olympic sport yet?)
As a side note, have I ever shared my 1940’s ironing board cabinet?
It has the original glass knob and everything.
Once you have your edges pressed, lay your curtain panel on the floor (or work surface) with the right side down.
I used a piece of the sheet I trimmed off my lining to use as the sleeve for the curtain rod. I pinned it two inches from the top of the panel, turning the sides under to hide the raw edge.
I needed about a 2″ wide sleeve to fit my curtain rod, so I measured 2″ down from my pin line to sew a second line, which will complete the sleeve.
So, I’m going to sew along the pencil line and the stitch line (that was originally the edge of the sheet, so it was already sewn.)
Nobody is going to see this, so it’s OK to leave the edges raw. Simply slide the rod into the sleeve and…ta-da! A curtain panel in about 20 minutes. The first one may take you a little longer, but you’ll get quicker as you move along. So, what happened to the bottom edge of the curtains? Well, nothing yet. I like to let my curtains hang for a few days before I hem them. So, we’ll be hemming our curtains together when I can get to it.
As a disclaimer, this is the totally wrong, but totally easy way to make curtains. You don’t have to mess with fusible webbing, header tape, rings, and all of those little things that add time and money to a project.
I purchased my fabric on sale from JoAnn Fabrics and online at Fabric.com using a coupon code. Here’s where the money-saving part came in. I loved this print, but it was $36/yard or something crazy like that in the decorator fabric section (linen and cotton blend.) There was no way I could afford that, even with a discount or coupon. Then, I spotted this same print in Waverly’s Sun-n-shade line (canvas fabric.) It was on sale for $10/yard AND I had a $55 gift card for my birthday. The fabric is called Tucker Resist Chambray by Waverly and it’s based on a block printed fabric found in Williamsburg. It’s a little less than $10/yard at fabric.com right now and is even less with a coupon code!
There it is! I hope it inspires you to find a fabric you love and make some simple drapes. I’m going to use this same technique to make curtains for my family room…one of these days. The bolt is leaning against the wall…mocking me.
And, in case you were wondering, I have never hemmed those curtains…and the world is still turning.
I'm Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, lover of all things home and an accidental entrepreneur, author, freelance writer & photographer. READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business...