Category:   Skill Level:
Sketched Window Curtains
Sketched Window Curtains

Created by: Improv Sewing's Nicole Blum and Debra Immergut

Be sure to give us feedback on this project below.

Level: Intermediate
Time: 2 Hours

These airy window panels, with their dainty stitched lines on gossamer-thin fabric, seem to fill a room with soft breezes and sunlight even on a gloomy day. Sew up a pair in the time it takes to buy sheers from the big box store, or if you already own the store-bought version, take them down and embellish them!

Janome Supplies Required:

  • Any Janome Sewing Machine
  • All-purpose Foot / Zig-Zag Foot

Fabric and Notions Required:

  • 1/2 yard of 52"- wide voile fabric (selvage edges still attached)*
  • 2 spools of contrasting color thread
  • Buttons
  • Embroidery floss and embroidery needle
  • Template (page 305), optional
  • Fine-tipped pencil

*Each finished curtain panel measures 26" long × 18" wide. If your windows are larger, purchase more fabric and piece it as necessary for the desired size panels.

1. Measure, mark, and cut
To make two curtain panels, each measuring 26" long × 18" wide, fold the fabric in half lengthwise, with the right sides together and the selvages aligned. Press the fold lightly to crease it, then open it and cut along the crease.

2. Stitch along the edges
Straight stitch four lines parallel to the bottom edge, 1/8" apart, starting 1/4" from the bottom edge.
Change to the second thread color and stitch three lines between the original four stitched lines.
Use one of the contrasting threads to straight stitch a single line along both sides of each panel, 1/4" in from the raw edges.

3. Make the rod casing
Press the top edge of each panel 1/2" to the wrong side and then again 11/2" to the wrong side.
Stitch two straight lines, parallel to the top folded edge, 11/4" and 11/2" down from the top edge to make the casing for the curtain rod.

4. Sketch your design
Draw your design on paper or use the template provided. Once you are happy with the design, lay one of the panels over it and lightly trace it with a fine-tipped pencil. Repeat with the other panel.
With the presser foot pressure set to 0, straight stitch (our stitch length was 1.5) up one of the design lines, turn around, and stitch back down. Continue to stitch all of the design lines, particularly the leaves in the template design, in this manner.
If the design has round or curved shapes, such as flowers at the end of the straight lines on the template design, use the free-motion doodling technique (see Improv Sewing book, page 134).
Hand-sew buttons as desired to highlight areas of the design. If you used the template, hand-sew a button on each of the round flower shapes, or skip drawing the flowers and simply add the buttons.

Cutting tip: These curtains are left unhemmed because the selvage provides a narrow fringed finish. Stitched lines add weight to the bottom edge, and the sides are stitched to minimize (while still allowing) fraying.


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