Window treatments and curtains particularly offer a good opportunity to break with tradition and create your own designs and decorative themes.
You can, of course, make or buy new curtains, but there are many ways of adapting and revamping existing curtains.
• Reviving old curtains: Give old curtains a new lease on life simply by attaching some new braid or trim to their hems.
• Cutting down curtains: To give a room a fresh new look, make some café curtains by cutting down an old pair of curtains from a different room in your home.
• Using old for new: To save time and money, use old curtains as a lining around which to fit new fabric. Enclose the old in the new, then simply secure around the edges with fusible web.
• Buying seconds: There is quite a market in secondhand curtains. Consider buying secondhand to reduce your expenses significantly. You may, however, need to make size adjustments for the curtains to fit your windows.
Weighting: Make lightweight curtains hang better by placing coins or other weights inside hem corners, or gluing decorative beads along the outside edges of the hems.
Using a sheet: Use a sheet as a simple, single curtain. Nail the sheet to the top of a window frame using large, exterior roofing nails. Drape the “curtain” to one side of the window over another roofing nail which is used as a tieback.
Making a Tassel
Make a tassel by carefully rolling up some excess trim or braid and securing it with fabric glue. Insert a length of cord and use as a tieback, or hang several tassels from a curtain rail to dress it up.
Using Other Materials
Consider how a curtain will hang when you are planning to use alternative materials, and keep headings simple.
• Blankets: Use blankets as heavyweight “curtains” in very cold rooms. The insulating properties of blankets make them ideal.
• Burlap: Sew burlap bags into a patchwork to create a rustic but very natural- looking window dressing.
• Rugs: If you have a window with a poor view, use a decorative rug as a window treatment and distracting device. Use a rug’s looped fringe to hang the rug from a substantial curtain pole.
Brighten up a plain material by cutting themed shapes out of a differently colored fabric. Attach the shapes to the curtain using fabric glue. Use a non-fraying fabric such as felt for the shapes to avoid finishing edges.
Use sheer curtain fabric like a piece of tracing paper. Draw directly onto the material using a colorfast outliner pen. Leaves are an easy subject to draw around. Fix the outliner ink by ironing the back of the fabric.