- Curtain fabric - for one panel you will need enough for your finished length plus 8-9" x the width of the fabric. For instance, I knew I wanted my finished curtains to be 92" long so I cut at 101". The width of my fabric was 54". Choose fabric that has a nice drape, but is not too flimsy.
- Drapery rod
- Drapery rings with hook in opening - 7 or more for one panel
- Pin-in drapery hooks suitable for your type of fabric - 7 or more for one panel
- Sewing machine
- Thread that blends in with your fabric
- Straight pins
- Water-soluble marking pen
- Measuring tape or acrylic ruler
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Drill with drill bits appropriate for drapery rod hardware
- Pen or pencil
STEP 1: CUT FABRIC
Cut the fabric to the dimensions you need (see first item on material list). Cut off any selvages on the width. You are going to want to consider the size of your drapery rod and rings, where you want to hang the rod, and where you want the bottom of the curtains to fall. For floor to ceiling curtains, I like to hang them 1-2" from the ceiling and I like them to "pool" just a tad on the floor. You can use this tutorial for any curtain length however. As long as you know your desired finished length and add the 8-9" before you cut, you're good to go.
STEP 2: MARK FIRST FOLD
Starting with the sides and the wrong side of your fabric facing up, you are going to mark for your first fold for the seam using a water-soluble marking pen and measuring tape or ruler. Your first fold is 1/2" but you are going to mark at 1" along the entire side of the fabric. You can do one side at a time or you can do both sides at the same time.
Fold the fabric up to the 1" mark along the entire side to create your 1/2" seam fold. Pin in place along the top edge with the pins parallel to edge.
Press along the fold with the tip of your iron making sure not to iron over your pen marks as some can become permanent with heat applied. Remove pins.
STEP 5: MARK SECOND FOLD
Again along the side, mark for your second fold at 2" from the edge of your first fold. Do this along the entire length of the fabric.
Fold the fabric up to the 2" mark to create your 1" side seam. Pin along the entire length of the fabric with the pins perpendicular and the pin heads to the right of the edge.
Straight stitch 1/8" from the inside edge (the first fold) to secure the seam. Remove pins as you sew.
At this point, I like to remove any markings from my water-soluble pen. To do so, you can either spray the markings with a water bottle or simply dip your finger in water and rub the marking away. This will depend on the type of fabric you are using. Press the seam flat.
Repeat steps 2-8 to create seams for your other side, bottom and top. Use the illustration below as your guide for your first and second fold dimensions.
Sides: 1/2" first fold, 1" second fold.
Top: 1" first fold, 2" second fold.
Bottom: 1" first fold, 4-5" second fold. (I prefer a 5" bottom seam on long curtains.)
Remember that when you are marking, you need to double the number to achieve the finished fold width. For a 5" bottom seam, I'd mark for my second fold at 10" from the bottom.
Insert your drapery hooks to the back of the top seam evenly. The number of hooks you use is really up to you. Using more hooks gives you more "pleats". Most drapery rings come in packages of 7, but I used 9 rings and hooks for each panel to achieve the look I wanted. Make sure your hook is not poking through the front side of the fabric.
Install your drapery rod according to the manufacturer's instructions at your desired height. Use a level to make sure your rod is straight. If your rings come with a clip, remove the the clip before putting the rings on the rod.
Insert the hooks from the back of the curtain into the appropriate ring hole on the rod.
Happy sewing and decorating!