I recently made new café curtains for my kitchen window and wanted to share. I used my own "Retro Ranch" fabric. I even matched the color to my countertops! Cool, right?
This was my original screen print of my repeat that I made a couple of years ago. Since the idea of printing a large amount of continuous yardage myself was a little daunting, I decided to have Spoonflower do it for me. I ordered one of their color maps, and chose the shade of teal that most closely matched my countertops. I uploaded the design and a little more than a week later I had my fabric!
I didn't take any photos of the sewing since I started the project at about 10 at night (I get crazy on the weekends, people!) and the lighting would have been terrible, but here's a write-up of how I did it.
What I used:
- Tension rod that fit the width of my window
- Curtain rings and clips in the same color as the rod. I used 14 of each.
- 2 yards of fabric. Since my print was directional and my window was wide, I had to start out with a larger piece of fabric. I had a bit leftover.
- 1 1/2 yards of 3/8" grosgrain ribbon
- I put up the tension rod where I wanted it in the window with the rings and the clips. I measured from the bottom of the clips down to the window sill. This is how tall my completed panels would be.
- Then I measured the overall width of the window and added 2". This is how wide the two panels would be, combined. The 2" allows for a little overlap at the center. Divide that number by 2, to get the width of each panel. This is how wide each panel will be.
- After I had the finished dimensions, I started to add in the hems and pleats. I added 2" in width to each panel for the side hems (1" on each side for a small double hem), and 2" for each inverted pleat (my panels had 5 each). For the height, I added 2" for the top hem, and 3" for the bottom hem. Once I had my dimensions ready, I measured and pressed the hems, pinned, and did the simple straight sewing. When all the edge hems were completed, I measured out the pleat locations, sewed them, and pressed them flat. I added a black grosgrain ribbon along the bottom hem to the give them some visual balance. After that, I just clipped them onto the rings, and they're done!
Here's a little tip that I used from my mom who used to have a drapery business: When the panels are first clipped up and gathered to the side they will hang rather stiffly and may not give you the pleating you were hoping for. To get them to relax and hang the way you want, fold the pleats where you want them, like folding a fan. Using a long narrow strip of scrap of fabric, loosely tie the panel together at the bottom. Give it a fine spray of water on both sides from a spray bottle and let them sit like this for a day or two. As they dry, the fabric will remember the folds and will give you a nice pleated effect when you release them.
Here are few more photos of my 1950's kitchen. My great aunt gave me that KitKat clock for my 11th birthday. I think I was born loving retro...
Though it's tiny, it's by far my favorite space in my apartment. They just don't make them like they used to!
UPDATE: This fabric print is now available for sale in my shop. Listed in this teal and a sweet light pink colorway. :)