05 November 2009


No, this is not a health-related post, just in case you were made nervous by the title and our recent health history.

With regards and gratitude to The Nester, who is always an inspiration, and from whom I have learned a great deal...

Yesterday, I was feeling better, and the monkeys were still sick. So they were very subdued. And they took naps. So I actually accomplished something, and you get to read about it. Isn't that wonderful? :-) I was very happy.

At any rate, on to the point: Curtains were a new experience for me when I got married, and are something I'm still learning about. We didn't have curtains on the windows when I was growing up. We lived back in the woods with no neighbors in sight, and my mother likes well-lit rooms. Anything that covered the windows during the day was anathema, and at night was unnecessary. So I knew nothing about curtains at all.

When we moved in to this house, my MIL offered to make curtains for my living room. Curtain fabric costs a fortune, and I wanted the crown molding at the top of my windows to show, so I decided to just ask for a single panel for each window:

Now, this was an ideal gift for an overwhelmed young mother with a new house. My MIL sent me several fabric swatches, and then sewed the curtains as I had described them, with trim she selected to match the fabric I chose. I was very pleased, because they did a great job of covering the windows, which was all I wanted. Plus, I love the fabric, and thought they draped very elegantly when pulled back during the day:

I love the trim! But, further reading and experience taught me that these curtains are not well-scaled to the room. Also, my mother was horrified when she saw how much of the window was covered during the day, and that's been bothering me more and more lately. So when I saw a roll of fabric in Goodwill that perfectly matched my living room colors, I snapped it up. It turned out to be just enough to cut four ten-foot panels from, with just a bit left over:

(Thorvald helped). I proceeded (being limited by nap-time and my own desire to have new curtains sometime this decade) to make these up in true Nester fashion. First, I moved my curtain rods up as high as they would go. They're currently about 1 inch under the crown molding. Then, I folded the top of the fabric panels over about three inches, and spaced the ring-clips evenly across. I strung them on the rods, and hung them up, just like that:

Hanging up the rods wasn't as difficult as I expected. The Mad Scientist got a bit nervous, I think, when I called him up at work to ask where the drill bits were, but didn't say what I wanted them for. (Later he told me that drill bits don't really make him nervous, but if I'd asked for the wrecking bar that would have been cause for serious concern). I just used the cordless drill and screwed them straight into the plaster. I didn't use the drill bits, because they were out in the garage and I didn't feel like going out to get them. I tested a screw in the plaster lower down and it went in just fine, so I just went ahead without them. You can see in the picture above, I hung the first set too low. I moved them up, because they looked better higher. (No, I'm not particularly concerned about the extra holes in the wall. I'll patch them after the monkeys are in bed, next week while the Mad Scientist is out of town. Maybe).

Next, I straightened the fabric out, and folded it under about six inches:

Then I folded that up and hemmed it with safety pins so it just brushes the floor. Because I don't believe in drapes that "puddle." That look doesn't say "richness" to me, it just screams "DUST CATCHER!" Also, when the drapes puddle, the cat nests in them, which puts added stress on the rods. So, at any rate, for just the cost of the fabric ($17) and four sets of ring clips, I have beautiful new curtains for my living room:

Now, I would just like to say, that heavier weight rods would look better, and I also wish that I'd had another 20 ft. of fabric, to add another half-width to each panel. (Although, in that case I would have had to actually sew something, which would probably have meant these would never ever have gotten done). However, I think these curtains are a vast improvement on the previous ones, purely because they're much better scaled to the size of the room. The color is perfect, and overall I'm very pleased. As the Nester always says, "It doesn't have to be perfect, to be beautiful."

Incidentally, I found something to use instead of my pickle crock, as you can see in the photo above. I think that is also a decided improvement.


  1. I had to laugh when I read this, b/c we're apparently still on the same wavelength sometimes! I spent the day with my 5 monkeys sick on the couch, and I sewed curtains for my dining room!

  2. Looks good! Love the nester. She's the only reasons any of my windows have curtains!


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