I could not be more excited to share this light bulb moment I had with you guys. This project is so very simple and super duper inexpensive which is my favorite kind of project… yours too? Yahoo.
So if you have been with me for a bit you might remember this instagram post and this DIY lighting project. Ya, waiting for a flood, to be sure… I couldn't even show you the bottom of the curtains in the lighting project shot. But just like many of you have commented on these fabulous window treatments over the last year (I have a slight variation in color in my Master Bedroom, seen here, here and here for the win), I loved these curtains so effing much and even though they were about 12 inches shorter than I would have liked, I wasn't willing to give up on them. I hunted online and all over town, but since I found them on clearance at a particular closeout store, the only option was going to be 84 inch panels.
*Quick segue and a little rant…does anyone actually ever need 84″ curtain panels? I mean, I can't think of a single place I have lived in the last 20 years that would have a need for them. It is just so odd to me. Most of us want our curtains to barely dust the floor and hang several inches above the window line, so who lives in a house with portholes for windows? The answer to that, in case you aren't sure… pretty much no one – at least living on land and in this particular country. There may be like 5 of you who have a unique historic building slash living on a boat situation happening, but otherwise no one. So the moral of this story is that 84 inch panels will pretty much never work. Ugh. End rant*
Anyhow, as I was saying, this project equals so easy it's stupid. But it's amazing for how cheap it is, so pretty much not stupid at all – maybe it's stupid like in the phat sense of the word? I think you get my point regardless (I hope?).
These curtains have come along way from the high water waders they were in that instagram photo I linked to above. They aren't perfect, but soooo much better. In case you are curious how I lengthened them in addition to adding the trim, I undid the top seam and lowered my curtain rods which when combined with the trim gave me nearly 9 additional inches! Now they dust the floor without dragging or puddling, and in a house full of dogs and boys that is a good thing.
So when I was thinking about how to fix these babies, I knew I needed to add trim, but what kind of trim would work on these curtains and not compete with the rug and the pattern on the curtains themselves? I was originally thinking something in the neighborhood of macrame a neutral color like that of twine. Well it turns out that fabric trim of virtually any variety is astronomically expensive! My gawd. Even on sale, it still isn't all that affordable with the amount I would need. I figured for four panels at this size and by trimming out the bottom and the inside edges I would need about 16 yards of trim. Considering the panels cost me a whopping $8 for a pair, I would indeed feel comfortable spending a bit more on trim, but forking over $200 or more three times over (for the curtains in my bedroom and family room was a bit more than I could stomach.
And then I cried an ugly cry in the aisles of Joann's… well almost… because then I stumbled upon the clearance section which was piled to the rafters with every variety of this:
Ya so, you say? Looks like weirdy yarn, you say? Well it just so happens that is precisely what it is and it comes in a million and one versions including the fabulous and slightly macrame looking version I used on my curtains. Woot woot! The prices range from $1 – $5 for a skein like you see above, and each one is around 7 1/2 yards. That means I only needed about 2 and part of a 3rd. You see, when you spread this stuff out, it turns into glorious looking open weave substance that looks an awful lot like fabric trim and it often has cute stuff running down one side. Two you see above have a woven section of metallic thread running along the edge and the other has a mini pom pom edge. *Squeal* My mind immediately saw a million and one ways to use this stuff and I kind of bought most of the yarn on the rack.
I made sure to stock up on fabric glue before I checked out with 4 baskets full of yarn and other miscellaneous stuff. Ya, because this gal don't sew, at least not like a grownup does, so fabric glue is my bff.
So let's get down to business my friends… this is the simple part. Spread out your trim – I mean yarn – and glue the portion that looks like a perfect little hem onto the backside of your curtain panel (or whatever you are applying trim to). Start at the top of the inside edge of one of your panels and leave 1/2 inch overhang of your trim on that top edge. Then run your trim about 1/4 inch in from the actual edge of the curtain, so that the line of glue and your faux trim hem will be quite hidden.
// Tip – keep the glue to a minimum and try to keep it on the surface so it doesn't bleed through to the opposite side, which happens to be the front of your curtain. You can do this by running a thin line of glue and lightly pressing your trim onto the glue just enough that it saturates the hem of your faux trim. Don't press hard or weight it down or the glue will bleed through. Do a few inches at a time and if you have trouble getting it to stick or lay flat, use pins to secure it in place while you move along to the rest of your panel.
When you are ready to turn the corner, simply turn the corner, and then glue down the overlap of the trim hem like you see above. Then continue on your way till you get to the end of your curtain panel. Let your faux trim continue on about 1/2 inch beyond the edge of your curtain panel. This will help ensure it doesn't appear too short. Then simply fold the cut edge of your faux trim over and glue it onto itself. This will give you a finished edge. Now go back to the start of your trim and fold that extra overhang over on itself and glue it down.
That is it, all she wrote… at least for today. Easy peasy, and oh so cheap. This faux fabric trim added a good 3 inches to my panel and it looks so beachy and fab. You can get a glimpse of my trim for the family room here. Hope this helps save one of you a pretty penny one day when you find yourself needing trim!