Sunday, May 30, 2010
The Un-Curtain...A Tutorial
I live in the country with only the occasional deer or coyote to look in my windows, so my house is pretty curtainless. I rearranged my studio and the placement of my desk and computer monitor created a glare problem for me, so I made some 'un-curtains'. Essentially they're just long panels that I can move depending on where the sun is. I made mine fairly skinny because I love my view and enjoy looking out the window. Most of the time I don't want my window covered. I didn't want to do a full blown curtain, so I adapted a bit and came up with this.
First I needed to do some measuring. I wanted my panels to just hover above the sill, so I measured from the wire to the sill and subtracted a half inch. Then I added 3 inches to that measurement. My raw measurement was 48.5". I cut four panels, 13 x 48.5 out of some Ikea fabric that was in a bargain bucket.
Then I cut four pieces of lining fabric. I used plain white muslin. Not fancy, but I had it on hand. Cut the lining 3 inches smaller than the fabric panels. Mine were 10 x 45.5". Place the lining fabric on the wrong side of the panel with 1.5" of the panel on each side.
I put in a couple of pins on each side and the ends to help with the placement of the lining.
Pin the lining to the panel in a few places to keep it from moving as you head to the ironing board.
Start by preparing to miter the corners. Fold each corner in and press. You can measure 3 inches or just eyeball it like I did.
After all corners are pressed in, fold the raw edge of the panel fabric in to meet the edge of the lining and press. You should be folding in 3/4". Press in all the way around the panel.
Fold the panel fabric over another 3/4", press and pin. At the corners you'll be completing the miter. Notice you'll create a little extra square of fabric.
Take out your pins, trim out the square and pin again. Press and pin all the way around the panel.
Now you're ready to sew. Be sure to change to a topstitching needle for this next step. It makes a big difference.
I sew an 1/8" from the edge around the panel backstitching to secure the stitches at the beginning and end. Be sure to keep your needle down in the corners to pivot and stitch the next side.
You might want to use matching thread...I chose hot pink thread just for fun!
I clipped the panels to my wire curtain rod and here they are blocking that bright morning sun.
When the sun moves a bit, I can whisk them to the side and keep my view.
I also made a pressing board for my studio out of a pieces of mdf, a piece of fusible batting, some staples and a pieces of the same Ikea fabric, but in the larger scale print.
So, two more finishes for me this weekend. Two days left in the Spring to Finish Challenge. Are you making some last minute progress?