DIY Grommet Curtains, FLAT CURTAIN PANELS with grommets in the top hem can be hung from a decorative rod with cording laced through the grommets or with fancy S-hooks. A popular look is curtains with very large grommets that are speared by the rod. A convenient grommet heading tape product, available in fabric stores, makes this project easy
Muted geometrics (opposite)
Retro geometric patterns are back. The tones here are
muted, so the pattern is not overwhelming. The grommet heading is threaded onto steel cables—totally chic.
Double up (top)
Sheers to filter sunlight and calm the breeze, sun blocking panels for sleeping in late—these grommet
curtains have it all. The casual puddling on the floor
adds to the carefree attitude.
Accent on hardware (right)
Grommet tape, which comes with a choice of ring
colors, assures uniform folds in these understated curtains. A boldly striped fabric is paired with a metal rod
and sculpted finials; this treatment is as much about
the hardware as it is the fabric
What you need to know – DIY Grommet Curtains
Grommet curtains can be made in two styles: those with small grommets that are attached to the rod with hooks or cording, and those with large grommets that are speared by the rod. For either design, it is important to have an even number of grommets so both sides of the curtain can turn toward the wall. The space between grommets can be varied for small-grommet curtains.
Closer spacing will hold the upper edge in a straighter line; wider spacing will allow the curtain to slouch between grommets. For large-grommet curtains,
the space is determined by the grommet tape and cannot be altered. The tape has plastic spacer tabs that make the
curtain top fold back and forth in gentle
rolls and keep the upper edge straight. Small-grommet curtains can be made from lightweight to mediumweight fabric. Lightweight slinky fabrics will slouch gracefully between
grommets. Firmer fabric will hold a straighter line at the upper edge. To be sure the fabric is not too heavy, buy a small amount of fabric to test first; fold it into three layers, and attach a grommet. Use medium-weight fabric for grommet-tape curtains.
Before you cut into the fabric,
mount the rod so you can take accurate measurements. To determine the proper height for the rod, mock up a sample the way you intend to hang the curtain, so you’ll know the distance between the curtain top and the bottom of the rod for small-grommet curtains.
For large-grommet curtains, the top of
the rod will be even with the top of the grommet hole; the top of the curtain will be 1″ (2.5 cm) above the rod.
Materials – DIY Grommet Curtains
• Decorative rod
• Tools and hardware for installation
• S-hooks for hanging curtain with small grommets
• Decorator fabric
• Drapery weights for floor-length
• Drapery lining for lined curtains
• Safety pins
• Grommets, size 0 or 1⁄4” (6 mm) and
attaching tool for curtains with small grommets
• Grommet heading tape for curtains with large grommets
- Small-grommet curtains – DIY Grommet Curtains
• The cut length of the fabric is equal to the finished length of the curtain plus the lower hem
allowance (see chart on page 13) plus an upper hem allowance of two times the diameter of the grommet plus 2″ (5 cm).
- The cut width of the fabric is equal to the amount of space you want to cover multiplied by the desired fullness (see examples on page
13). Divide this amount by the width of the fabric and round up or down to the nearest whole or half width, to determine the number of fabric widths you need. Use full or half widths of fabric for each curtain panel.
- Multiply the cut length by the total number of widths needed to determine the amount of fabric to buy. Buy an extra pattern repeat per fabric width for matching patterns.
Large-grommet curtains- DIY Grommet Curtains
DIY Grommet Curtains
• The cut length of the fabric is equal to the finished
length of the curtain plus the lower hem
allowance (see chart on page 13) plus 2″ (5 cm)
for the upper hem.
• The finished width of the curtain panel is equal to
the amount of space you want to cover multiplied by two times fullness (required by the
grommet tape). Measure this length of grommet
tape. You must have an even number of grommets, and you must begin and end 2″ (5 cm)
beyond a space tab on each outer edge. Cut the
grommet tape to this length.
• The cut width of the curtain panel is equal to
the length of the grommet tape plus 6″ (15 cm)
for side hems. Divide this amount by the width
of the fabric to determine the number of fabric
widths you need. Don’t cut the panel to the
exact width until step 1 on page 20.
• Multiply the cut length by the total number of
widths needed to determine the amount of fabric
to buy. Buy an extra pattern repeat per fabric
width for matching patterns.
Making curtains with small grommets
1 Follow steps 1 to 4 on page 14 for flat panel curtains. Press the double-fold hem into the
upper edge. Unfold the fabric at the upper corners.
Trim out the excess fabric of the side hem to within
3⁄8” (1 cm) of the first fold. Refold and stitch the
2 Mark the placement for an even number of grommets along the top hem, placing the end
marks 3⁄4” (2 cm) from the sides. Space the remaining marks evenly 6″ to 10″ (15 to 25.5 cm) apart.
Try different spacing patterns, using safety pins to
help you decide.
3 Insert the grommets, following the manufac- turer’s directions.
Making curtains with large grommets
1 Seam the fabric widths together, if necessary, for each curtain panel. Finish the seams
together, and press them toward the side of the
panel. Lay out the grommet tape along the upper
edge of the panel, and adjust the placement so
seams in the panel only fall between pairs of grommets that are spaced closer together. Mark the curtain panel 3″ (7.5 cm) beyond the ends of the tape,
and trim off excess fabric evenly down the sides.
2 Press under the lower edge the full amount of the hem allowance. Then unfold the pressed
edge and turn the cut edge back, aligning it to the
pressed fold line. Press the outer fold. If you are
making floor-length curtains with more than one
fabric width, tack a drapery weight to the upper
layer of fabric at the base of each seam, with the
bottom of the weight near the inner fold
DIY Grommet Curtains
3 Refold the lower edge, forming a double-fold hem. Pin. Stitch, using a blind stitch for an invisible hem or a straight stitch for a visible hem.
4 Press under 3″ (7.5 cm) on one side. Then unfold the pressed edge and turn the cut edge back, aligning it to the pressed fold line. Press the outer fold of the double-fold hem. Repeat on the other side. Unfold the side hems.
5 Turn under the upper edge 2″ (5 cm) and press. Pin the grommet tape, tabs up, on the wrong side of the panel, aligning the cut ends to the inner folds of the side hems, with the upper edge of the tape 11⁄2” (3.8 cm) from the upper pressed fold. Stitch close to the top and bottom edges of the tape.
6 Refold the side hems. Insert a drapery weight between the layers of the lower hem, and tack it in place. Stitch, using a blind stitch or straight stitch. Straight stitch the hems in place over the grommet tape, keeping the spacer tabs free.
7 Trim away the fabric from inside the grommet openings.
8 Working on a flat surface, clip the decorative rings over the grommet openings, encasing the raw edges of the fabric.
9 Hook the plastic spacers together to ripple- fold the curtain. Insert the rod through the grommets and hang the rod.
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