Thursday, July 7, 2011

Curtains are Up!

I've been working like mad on the curtains for our stairwell, and they're up! I'm pretty excited to share a sneak peak with you. Unfortunately, a full shot of the area isn't included yet because I'm having major issues with the lighting (I need your help, dad). Here are a few angles that did work out o.k. for me today. What do you think?








The panels completely transform the space. I'm so happy with how they turned out, and they were quite easy to sew. I had been a little worried about sewing the pinch pleat, but the pleat tape made it really easy. 

Here's a step by step guide on how to use a pleat tape if you don't know. I certainly didn't and had a hard time finding some help, so I thought I'd snap some pictures along the way and share them with you. 

Supplies Needed: 
Fabric, matching curtain panels (if you're sewing two panels)
Pleat Tape
Pleat Hooks
Thread, Scissors, iron, etc. 

Here's a look at some pleat tape along with a pleat hook...




1) Sew a 4" header at the top of the curtain panel. (Fold over 4". Iron crease. Fold over 4" again. Pin in place. Iron crease. Stitch.)




2) Hem the sides of the panel to the desired width. (I created a 1-2" hem along the sides.)




3) Determine how many pleats you want across the top of the panel and decide how you'll space them. Each pleat uses four pockets and then you need one or two extra pockets between each pleat to space them nicely. So, if you want 6 pleats across the top of your panel, you'll need 24 pockets plus 5-10 extra pockets to space the pleats. (Keep reading and this step will make more sense.)


4) Pin the pleat tape securely in place and stitch along the top and bottom. (Be sure to sew in the same direction both times to prevent puckering.) Tuck the end of the tape under before stitching to hide the raw edge.






5) Gather four pockets into a pleat. 



6) Insert each of the four prongs into a pocket on the pleat tape. Pull down on the fabric to secure. 






7) Skip one or two pockets (depending on how you want the pleats spaced) and repeat. Continue this along the width of the panel and... voila! Easy. You can easily remove the pleat hooks to try some different looks. Play around with it to see what you like best. Just be sure to do the same spacing from one panel to the next so they match.




You may wish to stitch the bottom or base of each pleat to give it a more finished look. 

I used curtain rings with eyes to hang the panels from the rod. Like these ones...





If you'd like more detailed instructions (but no pictures) I did find this site helpful.  


I also had a chance to put up a bit of a gallery wall in the stairwell last night. Pictures to come! I'm delighted at how nicely things are coming together. Perhaps this will be a glitch-free project after all!

-Sarah
 

23 comments:

  1. It looks great! I just bought some of the same pleat tape for my Mom's drapes! Glad it turned out so well on yours!

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  2. Nice job...I really like them.
    You did a wonderful job in sewing them and putting them up...
    Now, I am looking forward to having mine done in the office room...

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  3. That looks surprisingly easy to make! It's been Pinned!

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  4. I love this fabric!! Where did you get it from?

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    1. I just picked it up at my local fabric store. I realize that won't help you much. Hope you can find something you like if you're planning on sewing some curtains!

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  5. If you used the hooks already on the pleat hooks to hang the curtains on the rod, instead of those little rings, the pleats would stand up much straighter and look more neat. I don 't understand your use of the rings.

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    1. You may be right. I don't know that the hooks would set on the rods very well though and then the curtains would sit a few inches higher. With the rings, the tops of the curtains hang just at the rod. Without the rings, the tops of the curtains would sit above the rod. Maybe that's the look you're going for though.

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  6. It's a special rod you use to hang the hooks on.

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    1. Just a regular curtain rod. Nothing fancy.

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    2. No tjhuff was telling you that there is a special rod your suppost to use with the pleat hooks

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  7. It's a special rod you use to hang the hooks on

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  8. I am SoOoOooo excited to read these directions. I even feel a bit foolish too - I have avoided making these types of drapes because I could have sworn my mother sewed each pleat and there was no way I was willing to do that much work. And today ((DECADES later)) ... I discover I was completely wrong! Thank you so very much for sharing this simple pattern with me/us. I can't wait to make my first set!!
    Katherine <3

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    1. I did try to sew each pleat as your mom & I throught it was done that way to ...the tape I got must have not been the same kind as shown here,i got one curtain done as the old way & it was nice but lots sewing the pleats ...so gone try to make some more curtains for dinning room & try the pleat she shown here...looks easy to here

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  9. Beautiful, lovely curtains, thank you for sharing with us

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  10. I LOVE, LOVE the fabric you used for the curtains!!!!!! Where can I purchase the fabric? Thanks for great information on sewing curtains!

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    1. I found the fabric at my local fabric store (fabricland in Canada) and that was a few years ago now. I'm sorry I don't know the name or line. I imagine it would be difficult to find even if I did! :(

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    2. I saw part of the name of the manufacturer of the fabric when you were hemming the fabric. The print says ' copyright MMV U.S. CANADA. Will you please provide the WHOLE information? Look at the white selvage of the fabric. The information is printed there. Check your remnants. If none, will you be so kind as to check the curtains you have up in your stairwell? You help truly is appreciated. I know your BLOGGING is to help the rest of us in Creating Beauty in this world where so much is needed in this crazy world. I looking forward to hearing from you! Great Job! Keep on Blogging! YOU ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE!

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    3. Unfortunately I left these curtains behind when we moved almost 3 years ago. I did find a few remnants down in my basement but they don't have the information we need. So sorry.

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    4. Check out this fabric from Tonic Living. It's similar. http://www.tonicliving.com/Paint-Palette-Turquoise-fabric-P3326.aspx

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  11. I LOVE, LOVE the fabric you used for the curtains!!!! Where can I purchase the fabric? Thanks for the great information on sewing curtains!

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  12. Thanks for all the details,
    it's help me a lot.

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  13. The weblink for the detailed instructions isn't working, do you have another way to get there ?

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    1. Sorry. I guess the webpage must have been taken down. I posted this a number of years ago, so it seems like it's no longer there.

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