Curtains and Other Window Treatments, Part 2

Some puddlin’ goin’ on at the bottom…

I have a lovely window seat in my new kitchen; it’s 11 feet long, and has three large windows. And I have enough space to put in box cushions (a future project for a future post!) But right now the curtains are too long, they puddle on the bench. That can be an OK look if it’s what you’re going for, but I don’t want the curtains to get caught up in the cushions, nor do I want anyone to sit on them, possible bringing down the curtains and rods.

I bought panels from the store, which were supposed to be 84 inches long, but as you can see, they’re more like 82. Which is fine, but with purchased panels, just be sure to measure them for an accurate adjustment.

You can get an extra-long tape measure at the craft store for home decor projects

These curtains didn’t come with tie-backs, but hemming them will give me the fabric I need to make them. I cut the excess fabric from the top of the panels (I’ll explain why the top in the next post), then serged the cut edge to make it clean. Then I pressed down a hem at my ironing board: first a one-inch underlap, then a three-inch hem.

I’m a press-to-hem-at-the-board type; this clover tool makes it easier

…and sewed a straight stitch across at my regular machine.

(Apparently I did not get a photo of my finished hem, and as the curtains were already on the rod, they were gonna stay there. Here’s a photo of the original, upper and lower hems, which are pretty much the same hem I gave them after trimming.)

A quick tip: I had a fairly new needle in my machine (I had only done a quick hemming job on a pair of pants), but after the first panel, my thread kept breaking. I changed my needle, just in case there was a nick or burr, but the thread continued to break every few stitches. I suspected the extra slubby nature of the fabric wasn’t setting well with cotton thread, so I switched to a polyester. Bingo! No more thread breaks. I sailed right through the remaining panels.

Ahh, that feels better – room for cushions now!

And now my kitchen curtains are complete! All of my curtain panels went through a similar process; measure to fit the window, then trim and hem. When you don’t have time to custom-make your window treatments, purchased panels can be altered to fit your needs.

I’ll see you next time for part three – tie-backs!

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