DIY Custom Drapery Panels DIY Custom Drapery Panels

Although often overlooked, drapery panels have a tremendous effect on the look and feel of a room. Appropriate curtains can enhance the beauty of a space and the furniture in a room, while old or poorly-designed curtains can make an otherwise beautiful room dark and dreary. Drapery panels are easy to make and install at home. Follow the guidelines below to select, create and hang drapery panels to complement any room.

Choose a Pattern

Draperies come in a variety of styles, patterns and colors, and the look of the drapery panel can be just as important as the quality of the construction and the hanging. When selecting a pattern, familiarize yourself with traditional drapery and curtain styles. Would a billowing, silky curtain or a thicker, patterned style be more appropriate for your room? Consider the colors and patterns that exist in the room already, and find a fabric that will match those and complement them. Look for designs and fabrics outside of the normal selection of curtains. For example, try looking for designs from bedding materials or even from clothing.

Once you have selected the fabric for your curtains, follow these steps to create your drapery panels.

Step 1 - Measure and Cut Your Fabric

Measure the length and height of your windows. Lay your fabric out and cut it, ensuring that the fabric is several inches taller than the window itself. The ideal width of the fabric is dependent upon the style of the drapery. If your curtains will remain stationary on either side of the window, cut 2 pieces of fabric to the same width as the window. For curtains that will close to the center of the window, cut the fabric to at least twice the width of the window, or wider if you prefer billowy curtains. Additionally, leave a few extra inches on all sides to hem the fabric.

Step 2 - Install Your Curtain Rod

Purchase and install a curtain rod according to the instructions. Install the rod close to the ceiling rather than just above the window.

Step 3 - Hem Your Curtains and Create Pleats

Hem the bottom edge of your curtains by folding a 2 to 3-inch section over twice and sewing it closed. Hem the other sides of the curtain once. At this point, if you would like to install pleats or lining to your curtains, sew pleater tape or lining material to the curtain fabric, as indicated by the instructions. Pleating requires careful measuring and sewing, but can create a particular aesthetic for your curtains that you may find very attractive.

Step 4 - Hang Your Curtains

Install the curtain rings provided with your curtain rod. Set up the rings 2 to 3 inches from the top of the curtain in order to ensure that they do not rip the curtain edge. Clip the curtain rings into the rod, as directed.

Once you have installed your curtains, ensure that your keep all of the panels clean. Periodically remove the curtains from the rod and clean the fabric in a machine or by hand, if necessary. Keeping your new curtains clean will ensure that they remain attractive fixtures to any room in the house.

Got a New Project You're Proud of?

Post it on Your Projects!