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Has anyone ever made curtains?

(48 Posts)
Itsawelshthing Mon 26-Jul-21 07:56:39

I am looking to make eyelet curtains from scratch. I need to get a better sewing machine first and then I can get started. Watched lots of YouTube tutorials and I think I'm ready! I have sewed curtains before, clothing, blankets etc but never actually made anything from scratch. How easy is it & is it more expensive than buying them? The ones I want are very expensive (£150) but I only want them because of the pattern.. But the pattern is cheaper when you buy the roll.

Ladyleftfieldlover Mon 26-Jul-21 08:04:38

I have made all our curtains, including floor length, lined curtains! Someone in John Lewis years ago gave me a little tutorial and drew diagrams for me. I also had a couple of sewing books.

Mollygo Mon 26-Jul-21 08:10:16

I make most of our curtains because our windows are an odd size. I haven’t made eyelet curtains, but I’ve done them with tabs at the top so I can use a curtain pole.
Linings are OK, but it makes the curtains heavy to manipulate while you sew. Give it a go.

MerylStreep Mon 26-Jul-21 08:11:59

I went to evening classes back in the day before YouTube.
I’ve saved a lot of money over the years making my own.

threexnanny Mon 26-Jul-21 08:12:30

I've always made our curtains and always line them. Pattern matching can be difficult.

H1954 Mon 26-Jul-21 08:14:00

Do make sure to purchase enough fabric to be able to match the pattern across both curtains. I've never made eyelet curtains, we have one pair that I got in the sales but I do make all our other curtains and blinds.
YouTube is a great source of information. Be sure to measure twice and cut once............or in my case, measure several times and cut once 😂.
Good luck and happy sewing!

Kate54 Mon 26-Jul-21 08:19:15

Used to do them - went to evening classes. Only remember one thing - you hem them before completing the tops, not after.

Lucca Mon 26-Jul-21 08:22:53

I’m the worlds worst seamstress ut I’ve made curtains !!

Lucca Mon 26-Jul-21 08:23:09

But…not ut…

MerylStreep Mon 26-Jul-21 08:25:31

Kate54
That info amazed me when we were told it. I thought: why didn’t I ever think of that. It just makes perfect sense.

Whitewavemark2 Mon 26-Jul-21 08:27:26

Years ago.

Have them made now. Well made curtains can last donkeys years so worth the expense.

PippaZ Mon 26-Jul-21 08:37:16

The weight and the bulk stop me making curtains now as I couldn't get up and down to the floor which is the easiest place to cut them, but they are quite simply - all straight stitching. This looks like a good tutorial www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPV3AEakOBU

M0nica Mon 26-Jul-21 08:40:26

In 50 years, I have only once bought a pair of curtains. I am no great shakes at sewing, I am cack handed, but, like others I have made unlined, lined and nterlined curtains, they may not have born very close inpsection, but they look and hang fine and do what they are needed for.

I would say that I have never mad eyelet curtains, only those with taped headins.

Whitewavemark2 Mon 26-Jul-21 08:48:37

PippaZ

The weight and the bulk stop me making curtains now as I couldn't get up and down to the floor which is the easiest place to cut them, but they are quite simply - all straight stitching. This looks like a good tutorial www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPV3AEakOBU

That is a major factor too. Floor to ceiling curtains are huge! Particularly if they cover an entire wall.

JackyB Mon 26-Jul-21 08:50:45

I've never tried more than a scrap of net curtain for a small window. I trust myself to make clothes, but I could never sew straight for long enough to make a curtain. On YouTube I have seen they stick masking tape across the machine to guide them for longer stretches. Or a large rubber band.

I will probably never need to now as I can use off the peg ones for our windows and if I needed one making, our neighbour is a trained seamstress and she has said she could do it if I needed any.

Witzend Mon 26-Jul-21 09:05:48

Yes, lots, inc. 2 pairs of floor length lined ones* for a dd.

It’s not difficult, but you need to be very careful when measuring and cutting out. If using fabric with a pattern, be sure to order enough extra for matching the lengths. IIRC one pattern repeat is enough but I’d def. check that!

The most PITA bit for me, was always hemming by hand, since I never cracked doing invisible hemming on the machine.

All I had when first making some (early 20s, pre marriage) was a big book about sewing, which in fact was fine, though nowadays YouTube is so incredibly helpful for everything.

If you haven’t already, you do need some very good, very sharp dressmaking scissors.

*she originally wanted a patterned fabric, but TBH since patterns are that much more of a fiddle I said I’d only make if plain. They moved from that house after only a few years anyway and they had to be shortened to fit.

Just out of interest, the fabric and all the other bits came from John Lewis, where the fabric they chose was also available in their ‘made in 7 days’ service.
When I worked it all out, the cost was almost exactly half - £300 odd, as against £600 odd.

Germanshepherdsmum Mon 26-Jul-21 09:09:15

I’m useless at sewing and have never made curtains - a lot of money wasted on expensive fabric if you get them wrong! If you factor in the cost of the new sewing machine you want, might it be cheaper not to get that and to have the curtains made? Lots of ladies do curtain making at home for reasonable prices. I found a very good curtain maker in the next village through our village magazine and she did a lovely job on mine.

Allsorts Mon 26-Jul-21 09:13:04

Always made my own, but not eyelet, what I found daunting was the weight and awkwardness of amount of material and lining for my large windows. I need some more but will buy ready made and alter them from the headings not the hem, that’s enough work for me., but they won’t be one offs. When I made my own I chose lovely fabric and no one else had similar. I made a big mistake getting rid of my last ones. I just got bored after 5 years.

Lexisgranny Mon 26-Jul-21 09:32:17

I always made them in the past, (taught by my grandmother) but we have large windows and I always made full length lined curtains (and double lined curtains for bedrooms) so like others, there is no way I could attempt to make them now, because of the weight. They are quite easy to make, the cutting out is the most difficult part, especially with patterns) but like PippaZ I cut out on the floor, and it involved a lot of crawling about, not an option now I’m afraid!!!

Welshwife Mon 26-Jul-21 09:39:27

I have made all our curtains for years. As has been said it is easier and a far better finish if you make them from the bottom. I have also made a number of pairs with eyelet tops. The curtain with eyelets need to be two and a half times the width of the window. Don’t skimp on this measurement or they won’t hang right. Dunelm sell the tape with the eyelets at the correct spacing and this is much easier to use.
Besides needing good cutting out scissors such as Fiskars you will need good sharp pointed scissors such as the type used for embroidery to cut out the centre of the eyelets.
Am very careful when cutting out and spend time working out any pattern matches - I am a tad anal on this point as if the pattern is out it drives me mad when the curtains are hung.
You will need to make the pattern match across all curtains.
I start by sewing the necessary widths together and pressing seams. Then I hem the bottoms of the curtain and the lining. Take your time pinning the lining to the top fabric and they should be a couple of inches shorter than the top fabric. I then sew the sides and at the same time turn the sides in to hold the lining firm.
I measure again the length of the curtains and turn over the top before attaching the heading tape. If the fabric is thick you may need to trim away the layers a bit to be able to push the rings together. There is a knack to pushing the rings on so the first couple may take a bit of effort.
Buy a machine with a hemming foot as you will use that a lot when making curtains - I use it for everything except attaching the heading tape. They can be a big effort to make but the satisfaction is great.
Start with a small window and not too heavy a fabric. Good luck.

Blossoming Mon 26-Jul-21 09:56:02

I always made them until I had to stop using the sewing machine. Never tried eyelets though.

Hetty58 Mon 26-Jul-21 09:56:04

I always make them - but I stick to plain fabrics and pencil pleat tapes.

I know my limits with patience - so don't want to make things difficult with pattern matching and eyelets!

I make the 'linings' as separate curtains that hook onto the lowest tape option at the back. My cat makes the window sills and linings grubby - so I can wash them more frequently and just give the curtains a vacuum clean.

Witzend Mon 26-Jul-21 09:57:10

That’s interesting, Welshwife - hemming before hanging. I’d always understood that you should hang first, at least in the case of heavier, lined ones, in case the weight makes them drop slightly.
Of course that makes it that much more of a PITA when you have to take them down for hemming and re-hang.

annodomini Mon 26-Jul-21 10:00:51

Until I downsized, I always made curtains. The only thing that I found tricky with was the pattern repeat and matching it on the two curtains. When I made full length curtains for a room-width window, I asked the seller what the pattern repeat was and was given the wrong answer, so I had to juggle the width of hems top and bottom to get it right. I loved those curtains and wish I'd brought them with me!

Callistemon Mon 26-Jul-21 10:45:39

Kate54

Used to do them - went to evening classes. Only remember one thing - you hem them before completing the tops, not after.

Well, you live and learn!!
Although I was told a couple of years ago that if you want to shorten readymade ones, it's best done from the top.

I don't make any now, OP, but they are easy enough to make although I've never made eyelet ones and ever realised you can buy eyelet tape!

www.hobbycraft.co.uk/ideas/sewing/how-to-make-eyelet-curtains