DIY: Adding Length to Curtains

Back in August when we moved into our new place, I knew one of the first things (as far as decorating) I wanted to do was add drapes to the living room. So I went on the search for long, neutral drapes - that were affordable. I eventually found two 80" cream-colored, sheer panels that I could live with. That seems long, but not when you have high ceilings and long windows. I (personally) think drapes look best hung a foot or so above the window and fall to where they just dust the ground - rather than hitting a foot (give or take) above the ground. However, even 80" wasn't long enough for this. So I just dealt with them. Then about an month ago I decided to tackle my choppy drapes. 

Panels (already had)
Coordinating fabric (2yrd $4, on sale!)
Fusible fabric iron on ($4.99)
Yard stick (already had)
Iron (already had)
Curtain rod (already had)
Curtain rings (2 7pc pkgs $5.99)

Total: $20.97

Before you get started you may want to see where your current panels hang and then measure how much additional fabric needs to be added in order for them to dust the ground and/or for them to be hung higher. 

1. Lay out your panel so that you can get a measurement of the width. Then lay your fabric onto the panel. Measure and cut off additional fabric length and width wise to appropriate lengths, but be sure to leave a couple inches on each end - just to be safe. 

2. Place a strip of the fusible iron on about an inch from the edge of the fabric, fold over about a half inch of  fabric, and iron the fabric together to create a hem.* Do this all the way down each side of the fabric length-wise only. Since I was working on the floor, I placed an old towel underneath the fabric while ironing. 

*I found it easiest to cut and iron about a one foot piece of the fusible iron at a time.

3. Once the length of both sides of the fabric has been hemmed, position the panel onto the fabric. Again, I went with about an inch of overlap. Once positioned, place your strip of iron-on between the fabrics and iron for about 10 seconds on each strip until you've adhered all of the fabric to the panel.  

4. Once the fabric has been ironed onto the panel you should have a couple inches of fabric left over on each side. Cut off additional fabric on the ends so that about one inch remains. 

5. Again, lay down a strip of iron on fusible tape about an inch from the edge of the fabric, fold the edge over, and then iron to fuse fabric together. Do this on both ends and this will finalize all hemming. 

6. Lay completed panel on the ground so that you can evenly space out the curtain rings. Clip on rings.

7. Slide rings onto existing rod and you will have yourself longer drapes!

So in the picture above my drapes are not dusting the ground. They are hanging out on the ground. When we move into a new place I will hang the rod to where the drapes dust the ground, but this rod was already up and I wasn't going to re-hang it. I really don't mind them being extra long. 

The first panel seemed to take me f o r e v e r! I almost wanted to quit, but I stuck it out. I actually also added fabric to the panels in our bedroom (the blue/green fabric in the first picture) and by the last panel I really was moving quickly.

If something in my directions is unclear, please email me at dwellingandtelling@gmail.com and I will be happy to clarify. I found this DIY to be slightly harder to put into words. Good luck!


Anonymous said...

So clever! We have don't have high ceilings but maybe someday... I will have to file this one away.

Lauren @ 31diy said...

Your new and longer curtains are lovely! You make it sound so easy to do. Quick question - where do you buy clip-on rings? Thanks!