Batik Drapes

New Curtains for a New Look

The drapes over the window

January 2008

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Over the past year, the room I use as an office at home has undergone a thorough renovation. The floor was refinished, the ceiling plastered and painted, the walls painted, the lighting replaced, the rug replaced, and the makeshift furniture replaced with new furniture. The only thing that had gone untouched was the window dressing. It was time.


The decor of the room is mostly modern, with a variety of colors and lots of abstract shapes. The colors are predominantly brown, burgundy, and blue, with some gold and green. The walls are now a teal color.

After searching the Jo-Ann fabrics for decorator fabrics and failing to find anything I wanted, we tried down at G-Street fabrics and also didn't find a decorator fabric. Then, we went over to the cotton prints and found this great batik fabric. It's a lot darker than I would have thought of getting, but with the browns in it and the gold leaves, it looks quite nice.

The Process

I'd wound up getting ten yards of fabric. The first thing I did was cut this into two roughly equal lengths, and launder the fabric.

Then, I made rod pockets at the top of each piece. (The rods were already installed, so simple rod pockets were the plan.) I cleaned up the cut end of the fabric, and serged it to prevent fraying. Then, I folded 3 inches of fabric down on the wrong side, and stitched along the serging. Finally, I sewed along the middle of the pocket to create the ruffley part that is above the rod. After finishing the pockets, I hung the two long pieces of fabric from the rods to get a preview of my new curtains and to measure my desired length.

I made a mark on the fabric at the bottom of the window frame, then took the fabric down from the rods. I measured two inches down from my marks, and cut the fabric. I serged the raw edges, and put a 1 inche hem along the bottom.

Since the selvages were the same color as the fabric, this being a died pattern and not a printed one, I did not have to finish the edges. With one pair of curtains ready, I repeated the process on the remaining fabric to make a second pair.

These curtains are a bit darker overall that I'm used to, but they look great with the light behind them. I can always tie them open if I need more light.

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