There are a lot of ways to make a curtain. Most fabric stores offer a vast array of fancy grommets, hooks, clips, and loops to choose from. But the easiest way to make a curtain is simply to sew a long pocket in your fabric wide enough to slide your curtain rod through, and that’s what this tutorial will tell you how to do.
The first step is to assess your window. How big is it? Do you want curtains that block out the sun, or do you want light to shine through them? Do you want two panels of curtains that you can part in the middle, or a single curtain that you can pull to the right or left? All of these questions will help you decide what kind of fabric to buy and how much.
If your window is very large, you’ll probably want to stick to more traditional drapery or home decor fabrics. These usually come in larger rolls and will fit your window better. They also tend to be heavier fabrics, so they block out light better. But don’t limit your imagination—you can make curtains out of any type of fabric you want. And if you fall in love with a lightweight fabric but still want your curtains to block out light, you can always add a second layer of felt or drapery lining behind your fabric.
In my case, I chose this floral gold-and-white linen. I don’t need my curtain to block out light, and my window is small enough that I don’t need 2 curtain panels to cover it, so I’ll be making a simple single-panel one-layer curtain here.
You’ll need a piece of fabric that’s 5 inches taller than your window and 1½ times wider. The extra length will give you a few inches to form the pocket and hem the edges, and the extra width will let the curtain billow instead of hanging like a flat piece of fabric. My window is 55” tall and 30” wide, so I cut my fabric to 60” x 45”.
First, finish the edges of your fabric with a turned-under stitch. Working on one side at a time, fold under the edge of the fabric at ½ inch, then turn under again. Pin and sew with a ⅜ inch stitch. Repeat this with all 4 sides.
Note: If you want to make a double-layered curtain, hem all 4 sides of the underneath layer just as you did with the top layer as shown above. Then place your two layers together, one atop the other, and treat them as one piece of fabric for the remainder of the tutorial.
The next step is creating the long pocket. Take the diameter of your curtain rod and add 3 inches, then fold over the top edge of your fabric to that length. For example, my curtain rod is 1 inch in diameter, so I folded over my top edge 4 inches. Pin the long pocket in place.
If you want, you can test out your pinned pocket with your curtain rod before you sew it. The pocket should comfortably fit your curtain rod and allow the curtain to smoothly pull open and closed. If you’re satisfied with the size of the pocket, go ahead and sew it in place. I used a ½ inch stitch.
Note: If you want a 2-panel curtain that opens in the middle, just repeat this whole process with your second piece of fabric. The width of the 2 pieces of fabric together should add up to 1½ times the width of your window.
And that’s it! Slide your finished curtain onto your curtain rod and enjoy your new home decor!