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Window coverings can be as diverse or interesting as you are.

Purchasing curtains of heavier materials can save you a great deal on your heating or air conditioning bills, particularly in a very warm or very windy environment.

The cost of these energy savers however can be very offputting particularly when you are on a tight budget.

Although the fabrics tend to be a little more costly than simple thin cotton, what you will gain in savings in your utilities, as well as the cost to purchase them, makes it well worth your time and effort to purchase the fabric and make your own.

To begin, measure your windows, not simply the glass aspect of them, but from one edge of the rod to another, making sure that you take into account the entire area that the curtains will need to cover.

If you want to have a gathered curtain, you will need to take the measurement from edge to edge and then multiply by 2 so that there is enough material to make the fabric gather well when it is on the rod.

Curtains are essentially nothing more than straight seaming, unless you want pinch pleated draperies, or the high headers that are so popular today.

Selecting your fabric is of great importance when making curtains, in that you will want the fabric to be thick enough to provide privacy and some level of insulation, but also light enough to drape well.

Too stiff a fabric, such as the heavy weight upholstery fabric will cause that the curtains won’t be easily pulled to open or close, will be very heavy and require a heavier rod setup, and in some cases, won’t hang well due to the weight of the material, or gather well when opened being too stiff a material.

Lightweight canvas, upholstery fabric or heavier weight cotton will serve well for curtain fabric.

Make sure that your window or door measurements add an extra couple inches of fabric if you want a high ruffle on top, as well as an inch all the way around for a seam allowance, and that you measure not just the glass, but also the windows trim area.

This way, the window and its trim would be completely covered.

Write down the number and label it “window length”. My window length was 38″.

Measure the width of your window, including the window trim. Write down this number and label it “window width”. My window width was 32″.

For curtains that hang below the windows themselves you will want to measure to the place you want them to stop below the window or, if you want them just to the inch or so below the window, add just an inch or two to your total number.

Add 1 inch to this measurement for a hem and if you want a higher header, or high ruffle add about three inches .

Write down your final number and label it “fabric length”. I rounded up to the next inch.

Double your window width.

Write down this number and label it “fabric width”.

You may want just one panel at your window, but chances are you are going to want two, so that you can open them in the center.

If that is the case, each panel must be one half the width of the total width that you will need for the window.

It will be a great deal easier to iron your hems and seam allowances prior to sewing them.

Stitch your side seams first, then move on to the bottom hem.

Fold about three inches of fabric at the top, down onto the rest of the curtain.

Leaving an inch or more for higher ruffles, straight stitch all the way across.

Leaving an inch and a half between that seam, and the second one, straight stitch across again.

This will be your rod pocket.

If you are interested in more free curtain and craft patterns pay a visit to Fabrics.com. If blinds are more your style you will find some beautiful ones to suit you by paying a visit to Brilliant Blinds.


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