Budget-Friendly Draperies

I feel like I'm starting this blog from scratch given how long it's been since I last posted anything. I blame mid-terms for keeping my design mind occupied elsewhere, but I've missed this so I hope to be back at it more diligently (until Finals, anyway!).

Our house is pretty old and needs a lot of TLC these days. We have a leaky basement, a leaky bathroom, the oldest windows you've ever seen (in a not-at-all-charming way), we just had to replace our roof, and I'm pretty sure an addition off the back of our kitchen is falling away from the house! The big to-do list item for us is fixing the foundation wall around the house to stop the water from making itself at home in our basement (our playroom) and generally causing us stress every time the weather gets grey. As a result of all of this, a lot of the decorative work is DIY stuff in an effort to put our financial resources toward the bigger projects.

I love doing stuff around the house myself, except it usually takes forever to get anything done. But, I finally finished drapes in our bedroom, and wanted to share as I'm really happy with how they turned out and I want to celebrate a job completed!!!!

This was a very easy project that involved a trip to Ikea and the fabric store. I bought a pair of inexpensive off-white curtains from Ikea for $30, 1 yard of Vintage Blossom Citrine fabric from Dwell Studios for just under $20 (which was way more than I needed but I'll use the rest for cushions) and a couple meters of grosgrain ribbon for $1 or $2. Here's what I did:

The process here was so simple and if you're a novice sewer like me, you can still make these fairly quickly and without too much grief.

I wanted the Dwell Studio fabric to skim the floor and go up as high as the base of the window frames. I have large windows and they are only 26" off the floor, so I needed 26" of Dwell fabric (plus a tad more for seams), and enough ribbon to run the width of the panels, plus a little more to wrap around each side. As for the Ikea curtains, I hung them and then marked where they needed to be cut (in this case, I cut them at the bottom of the window frame).

I then laid out the Dwell fabric and pinned the seams so I could iron them (ironing fabric before sewing it really does make life SO much easier and is really worth spending the time).

I then just wrapped the Dwell fabric around the sides of the curtain panels and pinned it in place.

This is one panel laid out. The sides and the bottom have been pinned around the Ikea panel and the top has been folded down to create a nice edge. The top doesn't matter too much though, because I'll be sewing ribbon along that edge anyway.

Once the two side edges and the bottom was sewn, I lay the ribbon along the seam between the Ikea pane and the Dwell fabric and just sewed along both edges of the ribbon.

After that, I hung them and VOILA! If I'd really been ambitious I would have lined them, and who knows, maybe one day I will. In the meantime, I'm happy because for $50 or so, I have new drapes. Nowhere would I be able to find exactly what I was looking for for that price. I'm a happy DIY-er!
Please ignore the unfinished chair in the corner (it's very temporary,and a DIY project for another day) and the paper blinds that are hung until our new blinds arrive.

Next projects: the side chair in our bedroom and a few lamps scattered throughout the house. Stay tuned!


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