So I bought these curtains from Target for my daughter’s room a couple months ago and I just haven’t been happy with how they looked. They were 84 long and with my 8 ft ceilings it just didn’t look right. They were too short and looked too heavy. So I decided to add some length and lightness to them by adding a ruffle to the bottom
Here’s the step by step instructions you can use on any curtains to get the same look:
I bought 4 yards of fabric or 2 yards for each panel. I cut them to be 72×32 each (It’s funny how weird the color looks in this picture…but they are navy). Each of her curtain panels were 54 in wide, so with 2 yards of fabric (72 in) that gave me a little extra fabric to play with to make the ruffle.
So if you haven’t ever sewn a ruffle before, here’s what you do…
First, you want to start with a really loose stitch. To hold the stitch in place I did a small backstitch to start with at a #2 setting. Then I switched it to a #4 setting for the rest of the row. *Keep in mind that I have about a 15 year old sewing machine, so those of you who are lucky enough to have new fancy machines might have different settings for this
I did 2 rows of stitches all along the top of the width of the fabric. I did 2 rows because it makes it easier to pull your thread through to make the ruffle. The first one I did at 1/2 inch and the next one at 3/4 inch. And to make this an even more simple project, I just used the selvaged edge that was already on the bottom of the fabric instead of hemming it (but you can if you want)
Here’s what it looked like once I had the 2 rows of stitches sewn. Important: make sure to knot the ends of the thread when you get to the end of your rows. This will make sure the thread stays in place when you’re pulling on it to make your ruffle.
The next part is the trickiest and I actually broke my thread the first time I had to pick it out and start all over (ugh). So be careful! You will have 2 tails of thread on the top of the fabric and 2 on the bottom. Only pull the top 2 tails of thread while you push the fabric back to make it bunch up. If you pull the thread on the bottom at the same time then your thread will lock up and you will not be able to pull it through.
Once I had the fabric bunched in the way I wanted (with an extra inch on each side) I was ready to attach my ruffle to the panel.
First I measured down 64 inches on my panel (you can place your ruffle wherever you like but a good rule of thumb is about the bottom 3rd of the panel. I wanted my curtains to be 96 inches long so they would be floor to ceiling) I marked it with a pin on each side and then I folded it along that line and ironed it so I had a line going across to know where to start the ruffle.
Pin your ruffle to your curtain panel with right sides together. That way after you’ve sewed it on, you flip it back over and have a hidden seam.
I placed my pins about 2 inches apart all the way down the width of my panel leaving about a 1 in of fabric on each side which you will use to fold over and make a side hem.
I flipped the panel around and sewed the side of the fabric to the back of the panel
This next part was a little more difficult… I decided to keep my panel flipped over with my ruffle underneath while I sewed. I did this because then I could see the line that I had ironed into the fabric and could sew a straight line. It was tricky though because I had to keep checking the ruffle underneath to make sure that it didn’t move out of place or bunch up.
After I had the ruffle attached, I needed to sew the sides of the fabric to the panel (oops…forgot to get a picture of this part) so I just sewed straight down the side.
And here’s what the finished product looks like up close!
Now it looks like I have completely custom curtains when all I really did was add a little extra fabric 🙂