Finished Curtains (on a budget)

Finished Curtains (on a budget)

Patchwork-pieced borders are beautiful on these curtains

Steps to Making the Curtains

Piecing the Border

I used a brick pattern for the border, piecing together from all shades of green. I put a magnetic seam marker on the bed of my sewing machine to ensure even 3/8″ seams. After piecing, I pressed the seams to one side, then topstitched 1/8″ away from the seams to secure them flat against the back of the piecing.

Adding Border to Body

I changed plans on the fly and put the border at the top of the curtains instead of the bottom. I checked with DH, as it’s his bedroom too, and he liked the placement at the top. It’s more visible there. I measured out enough space for attaching the rod pocked and to make a ruffle along the top, and a corresponding length to make the curtain long enough to reach about a foot past the bottom of the curtain. I sewed the top and bottom pieces along each section of pieced border, then pressed the seams the same direction as the pieced seams and secured them down with a line of topstitching. I pressed the whole curtain, then folded it loosely, until all ten were done.

Lining the Curtains

I cut white fabric, acquired as a whole bolt at a discount fabric wholesaler, a few inches larger than my curtain fronts. I sewed back to front, right sides together, leaving an opening at the top corner about six inches wide. I trimmed off the extra fabric, then turned the curtain right side out. I pressed the edge seam flat all around, and secured it by topstitching all around the edge of the curtain. This also closed the turning opening.

Another way to do this would have been to sew the sides and top, separately turning the lining and main curtain fabric and hemming them separately, with hems turned to the inside, lining hem an inch shorter than the front hem. This would have taken much longer to do, and I just didn’t want to do that much hemming. It would have had the advantage of less puckering of the fabric, as separate hems would allow any unevennesses to fall out naturally.

Rod Pockets

There are a few ways to make pockets. The simplest is just to sew two lines a couple inches apart, unpick the end seams between them, and tadah!, rod pocket.

I didn’t do it that way. I used some of the remaining white material that I’d trimmed from around the curtains, a piece about six inches wide and the same width as the curtains. I hemmed the short ends, making the piece slightly shorter in width than the curtains, then sewed 1/2″ seam along the long edge, making a tube.

I turned the tube right side out and pressed the seam flat, then pinned it to the back of the curtain. I measured an inch up from the top of the pieced portion, and pinned along that, seam side at the bottom, ensuring that the pieced part is lined up straight when the curtains are hung. I sewed along the bottom, backstitching at the start and end of the row for strength.

I could have sewed along both the top and the bottom; I didn’t do that, leaving the pocket attached on only one side. This made a wider ruffle, but took more adjusting to get the curtains to hang straight without showing the pockets when I hung them.

I like them!

I like how these turned out. My bedroom is so much lighter than it was with the blackout curtains. They’re airy and pretty. I’m going to make new curtains for the living room too, but I think I’ll just trim them with ribbon instead of piecing more borders.

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