These Curtains Are Sew Awesome

I’m ashamed to admit it, but there are definitely a few (and by a few, I mean a lot) of rooms in our house that have yet to be visited by the decorating fairy.  These rooms are bursting with potential, but have been neglected while the hubby and I have been completing various random homeowner tasks such as dealing with leaking pipes, laying sod, and all that other good stuff.

Take the third bedroom, for example.  It has great bones – pretty linen-colored paint, crown molding, nice nightstands, etc. – but it’s pretty blah, wouldn’t you agree?

These Curtains are Sew Awesome

While I love the sage green bedspread, those white and black floral curtains were doing absolutely nothing to give the room any character.  All that changed when I decided to whip up some fun, colorful curtains for our sad little bedroom with this gorgeous fabric:

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I know what you’re thinking – Huh?  I didn’t know this chick could sew??

Well, you’re right.  I’m no seamstress.  The last time I touched a sewing machine was during a summer in college when my mom taught me how to make some pillows for my dorm room.  Lucky for me, it turned out that sewing curtains is just about as easy as it gets!!  Here’s how I pulled it off:

1.  Decide how long you want the curtains to be. With this particular window, we had already hung a curtain rod with 85 inch long sheers, so I knew that I wanted the curtains to also be 85 inches long.  I checked all of my measurements before I ordered the fabric so that I could make sure that I would have enough fabric – patching random pieces together to make the curtains long enough was definitely something that I wanted to avoid.  Since I was making two 85 inch curtain panels, that meant that I would need 5 yards of fabric – and I went ahead and ordered an extra yard “just in case.”  I can use any extra fabric for another project.

2.  Give yourself a little wiggle room.  Once I was ready to start making the curtains, I laid out the fabric on the floor and measured 90 inches.  I decided to cut each curtain 90 inches long to make sure that I had ample room for hemming and the rod pocket top.  If you’re going to hang your curtains from curtain rings, you can give yourself a little less wiggle room.

After I measured out 90 inches, I folded the fabric over itself (with the non-printed side facing up) so that I had two matching 90-inch pieces of fabric, and a little left over.  I cut off the extra material and set it aside, and then cut the two pieces of fabric apart right at the fold.

These Curtains are Sew Awesome

3.  To pin or not to pin.  Being new to sewing, I decided to pin the hem on the first curtain.  Since the fabric was already laying face-down, it was easy to get right down to work.  I just folded the fabric over so that the non-finished edge was completely hidden and only the printed fabric would show on the finished curtain.  A pin every few inches did the trick.

These Curtains are Sew Awesome

After I sewed the first curtain, I realized that I could easily skip this step – by just holding the fabric taut while I pulled it through the sewing machine, I was able to maintain a pretty even hem.  Once you feel comfortable using the sewing machine, I definitely recommend skipping the pinning step, as it will save you a lot of time on an easy project like this.

4.  Sew easy. Now it’s time to hit up the sewing machine!!  For me, the most intimidating part of this whole sewing process was setting up the sewing machine (winding the bobbin, threading the needle, etc.) – luckily, my machine came with pretty great instructions and I had the machine up and running in no time.  I just used the default stitch (a hem stitch) and pulled the fabric through the machine, taking out pins as I went along.  Seriously, that’s about all there is to it!!

These Curtains are Sew Awesome

5.  Make a rod pocket. Once I had the entire curtain hemmed, I folded over the top edge of the curtain to form a pocket for the curtain rod.  I measured three inches all the way across the top of the curtain and stuck in a few pins to hold everything in place.  Then I ran it through the sewing machine and the pocket was finished in a jiffy!

These Curtains are Sew Awesome

6.  Admire your handiwork. It’s not often that something so simple can make such a transformation and give you a ton of satisfaction.  The quick and easy addition of some DIY curtains quickly gave our third bedroom a dash of personality that we can build upon in the future when we finally get around to decorating.  In the meantime, it’s a welcoming space that any guest would enjoy.

These Curtains are Sew Awesome

Easy, right?  What DIY projects have you conquered lately?

This post is shared with A Soft Place To Land and Fireflies and Jellybeans.

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Comments

  1. christy says:

    Wow it sure is! I’m sure your guests will just love those curtains. And I can’t believe it, but you really did make sewing them look easy. I practically failed my home ec class in 9th grade because I had to make Jams – oh that ages me, but remember those shorts everyone loved? – and mine were terrible – I don’t think they even resembled shorts. But your curtains – wow they’re gorgeous! And I love the action shots of you making them too!!

  2. Liz says:

    Christy,

    You are hilarious! Ah, jams – that definitely takes me back. :) Here’s hoping that jams never make a comeback!!

    ~ Liz

  3. Lindsay says:

    Love it! The curtains look great! The pattern of the fabric is adorable too!

  4. Averill says:

    I’m impressed! And I agree, they’re a lot better than the B&W ones (not that those were bad, they just didn’t work as well with the sage bedspread).

    Whenever I have a sewing project to conquer, I have my mom do it. :) And yes, I know I’m supposed to be an adult, but she’s really good! (She even made up new bolster covers for me complete with a self-welt!)

  5. Tonya says:

    The curtains look awesome!!!!!!!!! They look great with the bedspread! I think a few pink accent pieces would tie the whole thing together beautifully :-)

  6. Janis says:

    Hooray for you, for encouraging people to sew again. Your new paisley curtains look fabulous! And it looks like you are onto one of my favorite tricks: using the edge of a plank of hardwood flooring for a cutting guide.

    • Liz says:

      Janis,

      You caught me!! I’m with you – we always use the straight lines of our hardwood floors as guides for everything from making sure furniture and rugs are in line to cutting large pieces of fabric. Good eye. :)

      ~ Liz

  7. Nicole says:

    I did my first diy project on Sunday. I removed double shower doors from our guest bathroom. Let the changes begin!

    My mom is always sewing something…I think I need another lesson soon!

  8. anna see says:

    Great job! I was “sew” scared, but now I’m “sew” impressed with the outcome! :)

  9. I am in love with the new fabric! What a huge difference those new curtains made. Great job!!

  10. That fabric is awesome! It makes a huge difference in the room…great job!

  11. I love the fabric!

  12. Love the fabric and what a transformation! It looks awesome! Love it with the green bedding!

  13. Fawnda says:

    I love love love the fabric! Great job!

  14. LB says:

    The curtains much improve the room. I agree that some simple accents would easily complete the room (not necessarily in pink). I think it’d also be neat to add a little more color to the bed – maybe 1 or 2 pillows or even a little stuffed animal that tie the huge amount of sage with the curtain colors? A small rug might also work well, depending on the overall size of the room.

    I, too, am busy making our first set of curtains for the nursery. It’s going to be a series of panels on a double curtain rod – so that we have the front panels with blackout fabric (no or minimal light) and the back rod to have eyelet curtains (softer or a little more light) and if all curtains are pushed out of the way then the option of full light. Ours coordinate with the room wall colors and white molding.

  15. Net Curtains says:

    Wish I can have the skills to sew, I would love to create personalized bed sheets, pillow cases and curtains with my own hands.

  16. I love the curtain you’ve made. Looks so great! Another thing is, you’ve done it very well. This post is informative. Good job!
    Anne @ double curtain rods´s last blog post post ..Double Curtain Rods