Saturday, March 17, 2012

Sewing Unlined/Lined Curtain Panels - Part 3

The real work in making curtain panels is in cutting the fabric and ironing all the hems in place.  Once that prep work is finished, the actual sewing is pretty easy.

This is my prego Baby Girl working on her baby's nursery.
Isn't she so cute?

In Part 1 of this tutorial - found here - I shared some things to consider before you jump into making curtain panels.

In Part 2A - found here - I showed you how to arrive at the cutting LENGTH for your panels

And in Part 2B - found here - we discussed determining the cutting WIDTH for your panels and how to arrive at the total amount of fabric you will need for this project.

In Part 3, I'll show you how to iron your hems in place and finish your unlined curtain panels.  If you would like to line your panels, Part 4 will show you how to add a lining.  Since the order is a little different, it would be best to read Part 4 to understand how to assemble the lined panels, and then come back to Part 3 for the hemming tips.  

By now, you should have all of your fabric cutting finished. Here are the steps to complete your panels:

Step 1 - If you have not already done so, sew your fabric sections together to get the width you need.*  It is best to sew your seams from the bottom to the top.  If your fabric should move slightly when you are stitching, it will be less noticeable in the top of the panel where the gathers are. Press your seams.

 *Lavender Tub tip - when my panels are quite wide making them hard to work with, I will delay Step 1 and go ahead with the pressing only in Steps 2 and 3, coming back to Step 1. Then I will do the stitching part of Steps 2 and 3.  (Basically, press your hems in place and then sew your sections together).

Step 2 - Iron the bottom hem in place.  If you wish to add drapery weights, stitch one at each seam where you pieced sections of fabric together, and one on each lower corner about 1/2 " from the hemline.  Make sure you do not position them right where you need to stitch your side hems.  Stitch your hem in place by machine or by hand, whichever you prefer.

Lavender Tub tip - rather than using a seam gauge to press my hems in place - I came up with a method that goes much faster, saves my fingers from the iron, and seems to be more accurate.  

Instead, using a pencil (choose a colored pencil that closely matches the color of the fabric if there is any chance it might show through) mark a line on the fabric that runs parallel with the cut edge you are hemming.  If you will be making a double hem, take the finished hem width amount and multiply by 4.  Mark a line on your fabric that # of inches from the cut edge.  IE:  if you will be making a 1" hem, draw a line 4" from the cut edge.  Likewise, if you want a 4" double hem, draw a line 16" from the edge.  

Now fold your cut edge up to that line and press in place.  

Open up this fold and now line up the cut edge with the crease you just made.  Press without pressing out the first crease.  You should now have a nice double hem ready to be sewn in place.

Step 3 - Press your side hems and stitch.  The above mentioned tip works great here too.

Step 4 - Press the top of your panel into place remembering the measurements you decided upon for the header, the rod pocket, and the hem.  Stitch the bottom of the rod pocket first, and then measure up from that seam to mark a stitching line for the top of the rod pocket.  Stitch along the marked line to complete the rod pocket.


While they can be a lot of work, making your own curtain panels from your favorite fabric is very satisfying.

I'm so proud of you!

Thanks for stopping by,


1 comment:

  1. So I guess you and I have a lot in common. WE both have 1929 home, dog named Bo and like to sew. Wow a great way to start off a friendship. I would love to follow you, but my blog is self hosted and don't have access to GFC. So wish you add "linky" it's free and everyone is using it. You tutorial is really good, my fingers are crossed that you will consider sharing this tonight at Sunday's Best Party.


I LOVE your ideas and comments. Thanks for taking the time :)