Blackout Curtains are some of the most sought-after window treatments. They have a thick fabric that specialise in completely blocking the light out from windows and keeping rooms as close to dark as possible. This might seem like the exact opposite of wanting to have windows, but these curtains have found usage in niche scenarios that we all might have come across over time. For instance, if you’re a shift worker, you might want to sleep in. Blackout curtains can block all the sunlight out, meaning that you can have uninterrupted sleep during the day time.
Given that these curtains have carved out a place for themselves in the window treatment market, a question that often crops up is whether or not you can make blackout curtains at home and whether or not the process is easy.
This blogpost answers both these questions in the affirmative and will walk you through the process.
Materials you will need
1. Fabric – This will form the heart of your blackout curtains. Exercise your discretion and decide the length of your fabric. The usual recommended length is 6 yards. However, the decision is very clearly dependant on the dimensions of your windows. At the minimal level, account for the size of the window, the frames and add another 10 inches to factor in the hemming. It is pertinent to note that the colour of the fabric need not be black. Any dark colour will suffice.
2. Blackout fabric lining – The fabric lining is essentially what will change your fabric lining from normal drapery to blackout fabric that can block the sunlight properly. Blackout lining usually consists of white, thick cotton.
3. Grosgrain ribbons – These are essentially for tabbing your blackout curtains. You can use other materials like satin for tabbing. However, grosgrain ribbons are highly recommended because they are credited with having the ability to handle heavy fabric used in blackout curtains.
4. Thread – Naturally, you will need some thread to sew the materials together. You can go for the classic choices of either black or white thread.
5. Pins – Pins are essentially placeholders that will keep the materials in the desired position temporarily until you can actually sew them together.
6. Scissors – Considering the yardage, you will need heavy duty scissors. Gauge the quality by sharpness. It is really important that your scissors are of good quality because cutting the fabric requires precision.
7. A Medium of Measurement – You can either use a measuring tape or a meter stick for making accurate measurements. If you can’t get any of these and don’t have time to get them, you can resort to a ruler. However, rulers aren’t long enough and you need to exercise caution while using them in order to make accurate measurements.
6. Pencil or Marker – While measuring the length of the fabric and the window frames you will have to mark positions. In that case, you will need a pencil or marker.
How to make your own Blackout Curtains?
Step 1: The first step always involves gauging how much fabric you would need. The first order of business is to measure the dimensions of your windows. The measurement starts from the curtain rods to the height till which you want your drapes to hang. Add about 8 inches to this measurement at the top and 8 inches below to give the curtains some extra space to breathe and stretch. Make sure to mark these measurements on the frames or wall with a pencil or marker.
Step 2: Lay the fabric down on a table or the floor (basically any flat surface) and measure the length to match the measurements you took for the window.
Step 3: Mark the fabric with the help of a yardstick, tape or ruler. Once the marking is done you can start cutting the fabric.
Step 4: Repeat steps 2 and 3 and apply them to the blackout lining fabric as well. The major difference in the steps is that you need not account for the hemming when you cut the fabric for the blackout lining.
Step 5: Make sure there are no wrinkles on any of the fabric. If you notice any wrinkles, iron them out or use steam to clear them.
Step 6: Place all your cut out materials on a flat surface again (floor or a table). The fabric must be facing downwards. Now place the blackout lining inside the fabric. The right side of the fabric must face upwards.
Step 7: Now, fold the hems of the fabric over the blackout lining.
Step 8: Place pins as placeholders to maintain the positioning of the fabric and the blackout lining itself. The best places to use the pins are around the corners and a few in between the edges.
Step 9: The last step simply involves sewing the hems to the blackout lining. Remove the pins as and when you reach them during the sewing process.
Disclaimer: Please follow these instructions at your own risk. ZebraBlinds takes no liability for any issues or damaged caused through following DIY methods. Since all blinds and shades are different, we always recommend checking with your blind manufacturer or retailer first before making any modifications to your blinds. As well, if you are uncomfortable on your own, look for the help of a professional.