I am absolutely thrilled with how fabulously they turned out! The curtain panels make a world of difference when you compare the before and after photos. (My husband has even expressed an actual opinion, which is something that doesn't usually happen...)
Here is a shot of the entire window... (I do plan on changing out the curtain rod for a much more substantial looking wood rod and brackets - or maybe sconces.)
Next, I started browsing fabric. I looked at a couple of local shops. (Hancock's and Joann's.) I think I ordered at least 12 different swatches from Fabric.com. (Luckily, they are only $.75 each.) I finally settled on this Faux Silk fabric in Gold.
The fabric was $7.98 a yard, plus I had a 15% coupon and they always have free shipping over $35 with no tax for most states. The price couldnt be beat, so I ordered 14.5 yards. (I think I have enough left over for 2 pillows and some decorative kitchen towels.
Here is a before and after photo:
Big difference right? (It's like day and night, right? Ha ha)
Now on to the tutorial...
Step 1: First you need to determine the length you want the curtains to be.
I used a large tape measure to test out different heights around my windows. You also need to take into consideration how you will be hanging the curtains. Through rod pocket or clip rings? A one inch clip will add about two inches to the total length and a 2 inch clip will add about 3.
Once you have decided on your length, you need to consider how wide to make the rod pocket and bottom hem. I needed to balance out my long panels, so I went with a 7 inch bottom hem and a 3 inch top hem, which gave me about a 2 3/4 inch rod pocket.
To determine the amount of fabric per panel: (my numbers are in parenthesis)
Take your desired finished length (113)
your top hem length (3)
your bottom hem length (7)
amount for seam allowances and room for error 2 to 4. I went with (3)
inches needed per panel (126)
For the liner panel:
Cut it to the same measurement as your desired finished length. (113)
Step 2: Cut your curtain panels and liners to length needed.
This was almost the toughest part, especially if you are making a panel that is super long. I rolled my fabric out on the tile in my entry way and had my husband stand on one end and me on the other. We used a tape measure, ruler and fabric marker to make the marks as even as possible before I cut the fabric.
Step 3: Hem the bottom edge of the liner panel.
My liner fabric was cotton, so I was able to iron in a good crease and did not have to use pins.
Fold over about a 1/3 inch, press, fold over another 2 inches and pres again.
Pin if needed and sew along the top edge. No need to do any thing to the top edge of the curtain liner. It will get tucked into the rod pocket.
If your curtain panels are made from a fabric that shreds like crazy, you will want to finish the edge either with a serger, a zig zag on your sewing machine or with pinking shears. Mine was fraying terribly and I was loosing inches, so I serged my edges. If you are using a finely woven cotton, you may not need to.
Step 4: Put together the curtain liner and panel.
Lay out the curtain panel on the floor, wrong side up. Lay your liner panel on top of the curtain panel, wrong side down. The curtain liner top should be approximately 3 inches or so from the top.
Move the liner panel up, and a little bit out of the way so you can fold up and pin the bottom hem.
Fold up the bottom edge the number of inches you want your bottom hem to be, plus one inch. (So for me that was 8 inches.) Fold the extra inch under and pin securely in place. Using a ruler or tape measure to stay accurate, do this all the way to to the other edge. My bottom hem is 7 inches.
Pull the liner back down to about 2 inches from the bottom hem of the curtain panel and even it up all around, smoothing out all the wrinkles and evening up the edges as best you can.
Step 5: Create the top hem/rod pocket.
Get out your tape measure and extend it out to the desired finished length of your curtain panel. (For me that was 113.) This way, when we fold the top edge over to create the rod pocket, the panel will be at the the correct length.
Fold the top hem over just like we did the bottom, this time using the measuring tape to help you figure out how much of the extra fabric to tuck under. I made my rod pocket three inches and I tucked under around an inch of fabric.
Do the entire top/rod pocket edge.
I used the tape measure to keep the panel even all the way across.
Step 6: Sew the bottom hem:
Once the top and bottom hem is pinned, take the curtain to your sewing machine and sew the bottom hem about 3/8 of an inch from the top folded edge. Sew the bottom hem only!
My fabric would not really hold an ironed edge, so I stopped bothering after the first panel, but if your fabric will hold a crease it is enormously helpful to iron the edges down before sewing. Just be careful not to melt your pin tops.
Step 7: Hem the sides:
Once you have sewed the bottom hem, lay the panel back on the floor so you can fold over the side hems. Smooth out the wrinkles as best you can and line up the liner and curtain panel edges as straight as possible.
Starting at the bottom, fold the edge over about half an inch, and fold over another half inch and pin securely in place.
When you get to the top/rod pocket part of the side hem, open up the top hem just enough to continue folding up the side hem, then pin the top hem back in place.
Take the curtain panel to your machine and start sewing up the side seams, about 3/8 inch from the inside edge. When you get to the top/rod pocket edge, be sure to unfold it and sew all the way up the side seams.
See how I sewed all the way up the edge and then folded it back over to create the rod pocket?
Step 8: Sew the top hem to create the rod pocket.
Sew the top rod pocket using a 3/8 inch seam allowance.
Tie off and trim any loose strings and you are done!!! Now go hang it and admire how good it looks!
Feel free to email me with any questions if I have confused anybody. If you are inspired to create something based on this tutorial, I would love to see it! I have created a new Flickr Group for you to share your creations. Here is the link: Creations inspired by Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom. (Please share, you might get featured!)
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