03.25.10: To Hang & Hold

Welcome to tonight's "quick fix" project!

I had grown so sick of this free, burgundy and hunter green colored fake tree (please don't ask me what I was thinking) that I threw it out with the trash this week without a moments hesitation -  that beast simply HAD to go. I had parked it in front of my kitchen window on the porch side for privacy. In hind site it was THE best decision because it put me back in my "I can do anything" mode, which in turn gave me a burst of energy to attempt a crafting project that was short, simple, cheap and could be done in an hour (or 3).

I made no-sew curtains for my kitchen window!!!

Here's what I used

Tension rod

Black spray paint that will adhere to metal, to cover the white rod

Fabric - that I've had entirely too long for it not to be completely dry rotted

Double sided, heat activated hem tape - there is no product known to man with that name, it's just a list of words that describes what I used

Curtain clips which I've had for 4+ years - see, hoarding does have its advantages

Iron / Ironing board / starch

Flat surface to cut the fabric - or in my case the floor cause the table was too jacked up with stuff to move all the stuff out of the way 

Lets get started!!!

*Normally I would start my directions of with: "Spray paint the tension rod and allow to dry while you complete the other steps". Seeing as how I bought a rod too small for the window AND it came with no mounting hardware, I'll just include this as a memo - assuming you're not as "challenged" as I am. Moving right along...

First: Measure your window and wonder how, in 6 years, you never realized it was a perfect square.

Second: Spend copious amounts of time doing 5th grade math trying to figure out how long and wide the curtain panels need to be so that it will "form a pleasant wave of ripples when completely closed". Ladies - you know what I'm talking about.

After the first half hour do your math again and add a 1/2 inch to each measurement because you forgot to account for hems. 

In the next half hour try to remember which set of numbers (of the 34) on that sheet of paper were the correct ones.

In the last half hour, debate "do I just wing it" or "do I waste hours on the internet looking for a free version of "Curtains for Dummies". Wing it, it is! What could POSSIBLY go wrong?

Third: This is THE most important step of all - listen closely - find the DULLEST pair of scissors in your home to cut the fabric with. It simply turns the dynamic of this "simple project" into a "challenge"...and don't we all love a good challenge ladies??

Fourth: I call this the "cutting & crying" step. 

Since your spending quality time on the floor anyway, go ahead and cut  the fabric wrong the first time - just get it out of your system...hence the phrase "cutting & crying". 

Have that self deprecating moment of "I can never do anything right" and "this is just going to end up being thrown away like so many of my other failed projects" moments...then get over yourself. Actually this really was okay because I bought too much fabric in the first place. 

When you've regained your composure & had a glass (or 8) of wine...try - try again! 

Your second set of panels will be the correct size IF you have your dog inspect the material prior to the cutting. It's one of this species most well kept secrets...yeah, that's what I'm sticking with. 

Take your magic tape and fold over the fabric to create a 1/2 in seam along all four sides - using plenty of steam to set the tape. Starch and iron the panel, then determine where your clip hooks should go.

Lastly: Use an unhung curtain rod from 2 years ago to demonstrate what your finished curtains look like. Then, ask people visualize what this will look like actually hanging in the window instead of off your china cabinet. I say visualize because I have no idea when I'm going to find the time to go pick up another tension rod :)

Ta - da! Pretty freaking fabulous for winging it, wouldn't you say? 

Hope you had as much fun reading this tale of crafting gone "so-so". It was a hoot to do and I can't wait to show you my next idea!!! 


  1. YES! I knew this was coming when I saw the pictures show up on flickr. So glad I waited up for the latest post.
    Your project turned out well, I think. So excited for the next really can do anything!

  2. Anonymous3/26/2010

    If you had only been in the room with me while I did it. I love trying stuff even if I fail - but I will say I'm happy with the results. It was a cheap fix and I enjoyed the process!!

    I know some people have to look at my photostream and think - WHAT is her common thread here???

    I appreciate the vote of confidence - I steal great ideas from everywhere and everyone!! :)

    Love Ya!

  3. It's been something like 24 days since your last blog entry! I'm just sayin' ;-)