Top tips for making your own curtains

Making your own curtains can be fun and will save you money. But there are plenty of things you can do to avoid mistakes and make the process as stress-free and enjoyable as possible.

 

1. Measure windows carefully. To work out how much fabric you need, measure the height between the curtain rod and the ground, then add 30cm for the header and hem. For the width, allow at least 2½ times the width of the window, with 3 times being the ideal.

2. Choose good-quality materials that are easy to work with and you'll save time. Slippery fabric, for example, is very difficult to sew because you need to tack it by hand before machine sewing it together, to ensure that your seams are straight and that the fabric doesn't pucker.

3. Consider buying a close-weave fabric, to avoid the need for lining, and steer clear of fabrics where the pattern must match–it can eat up hours of your time trying to get it to look right!

4. Choose a fabric that can be machine washed, rather than a dry-clean-only fabric, because it's faster and cheaper to launder it yourself.

5. Wash the curtain fabric before you cut it. This is very important as it stabilises the fabric and allows you to wash the curtains after they have been hung for a while, without the risk of them shrinking.