How to Turn Tablecloths into Curtains

tablecloths to curtains final square picture

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We live on a small budget. Every penny is accounted for and things like curtains are not in the budget.

To help us keep a tight budget, we try to reuse everything we can.

Several years ago my husband was given a sack of banquet tablecloths and napkins for free. He brought them home, handed them to me, and said, “I don’t know what you’d use these for, but I thought you could do something with them.”

I saw curtains.

Over the next few days I went to the store, picked out some dye, and made the girls checked curtains to replace the blankets that covered their windows.

I had many tablecloths left over and planned to take down all the blankets and make curtains for every window.

But things happened and I never was able to complete that task. I lost the tablecloths and so my main front window continued to be decorated with deer and wolf fleece blankets.

The beautiful blanket "curtains" that I've looked at for 9 years. This was the last window with blanket curtains.

The beautiful “curtains” that I’ve looked at for 9 years. This was the last window with blanket curtains.

Imagine my surprise when I found 4 tablecloths hidden under my bed this weekend.

I knew it was finally time to finish my last window and get all the blankets down and put up real curtains.

 

Turn Tablecloths into Curtains

Materials:

  1. Tablecloths or cloth napkins. You need enough material to cover the window twice.
  2. Rit Dye
  3. Tape measure
  4. Sewing machine
  5. Thread

 

Directions:

  1. Dye your tablecloths the desired color. These were dyed many years ago. Some had temporarily covered a window when some mini blinds broke so they were sun faded. This is where the creativity begins. You can make them any color to match your current decor!
  2. Design your pattern. Some of my windows are solid colors. Others are made out of 18-inch square napkins put in a checkerboard design. It is up to you. I always use a solid color for the backing (or outside) of the curtains. If you want plain curtains move to step 6, otherwise cut your tablecloths and lay them out in the desired pattern. My sun faded curtains were in perfect squares. I cut each tablecloth in half to highlight the fading. I also make sure I have a finished edge on 3 sides of my curtain panel. It makes finishing much easier. I generally measure for width and cut later for length. Instead of trimming a tablecloth for width, I simply make another curtain panel and have lots of ruffles within the curtain.
  3. Pin your pattern together, wrong sides out so you can hide your seams. This will be what you see on your curtains from the inside of your house.curtains stitch with seams
  4. Stitch each piece of your tablecloth together in the desired pattern.curtains press seams
  5. Press open the seams.curtains pin front and back together
  6. Pin the inside and backing together, right sides out. You are now making your actual curtain panel. Because tablecloths are thin, you have to make your curtain double thick. I usually use a solid color as the backing but you could use a pattern instead if preferred.
  7. Stitch around the entire piece. I use 1/4-inch seams. These will be visible. (I do not like making finishing hems so that is why tablecloths are ideal to use as curtains. Each edge is already finished.)curtains measure length
  8. Measure how tall you would like your curtains and add 4 inches. In this case, I wanted 80-inch curtains for a large window. I measured a length of 84 inches on the tablecloth.curtains fold at length
  9. Fold the tablecloth at that line on the top edge and cut along the fold. curtains fold at 4 inches
  10. Measure 4 inches from the cut edge and fold over again. You are now making a curtain rod loop. You’re also putting a finished edge on the top of your curtain where you cut the tablecloth to the appropriate length.
  11. Stitch the loop leaving the ends open.
  12. Hang on your window and enjoy. My intention was to use curtain hooks and an existing rod but the hooks were too small. For now the curtain is nailed to the wall but it is still much better than the deer and wolf. In a pinch, I’ve also used thumb tacks until we could afford curtain rods for a window.

 

 

Today’s finished curtains:

 

This is what today's curtains look like. The tablecloths were barely wide enough. If I had more material I would like to add another panel.

This is what today’s curtains look like. The tablecloths were barely wide enough. If I had more material I would like to add another panel.

 

Other ideas:

Checkerboard curtains made with cloth napkins.

Checkerboard curtains made with cloth napkins.

 

 

 

These are some plain curtains I made last year. I used a yellow tablecloth for the inside and a white one as the backing. Notice the push pins? Yep, I don't have a curtain rod there either but at least I now have curtains.

These are some plain curtains I made last year. I used a yellow tablecloth for the inside and a white one as the backing. Notice the push pins? Yep, I don’t have a curtain rod there either but at least I now have curtains.

~Crystal

 

Shared on:

So Much at Home, Wake up Wednesday, Home Matters Linky Party

 

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6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Sahana
    Oct 27, 2014 @ 06:58:17

    Great Idea Crystal 🙂 Thank you for linking up at Home matters link up party :)We would love to see you again this wednesday .

    Like

    Reply

  2. Trackback: Home Matters Linky Party #12 |
  3. Kristen from The Road to Domestication
    Nov 02, 2014 @ 22:26:18

    Crystal, I just wanted to let you know that you were featured on the #homematters linky party! Check it out: http://theroadtodomestication.com/2014/10/29/home-matters-linky-party-12/

    Like

    Reply

  4. Trackback: Serp Tracking

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