Blackout Curtains

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By Sewing Contributor Jessica, from the blog “Life Sew Good”.  

While it may be okay for the sun to rise at 5:00am, it’s not okay for my kids to wake up that early.  Whether it’s your kids getting up too early (or up too late!), you work graveyard, or you are simply interested in getting a little insulation in your window treatments, try making your own blackout curtains. 

Here’s what you need:

Fabric you like—can be anything:  heavy or sheer won’t matter
Black out material, which you can buy inexpensively at your fabric store or online
Measuring tape  (not pictured!)

First, measure the window!  When figuring out how much fabric you will need, take into consideration that you will want to make the curtains wider than the actual window measurement.  I decided to make 2 panels to cover the entire window.  To get an accurate measurement of how much fabric, I divided the original measure in ½.  Let’s just say ½ is 20”.  I’m going to want my curtains to be 1.5 x Width, which = 30”.  Then, add seam allowance, which I’m going to say 1” for the sides.

For example:  30”(1/2 width x 20”) + 2” (seam allowance each side) = 32” width for one panel. 

For the length, (40”),make sure you measure from where you want to HANG the curtains.  I added 10” total for the top seam allowance and loop (about 4”) and the bottom seam allowance and wider fold (about 6”). 

For example:  40” (length) + 10” (seam allowance) = 50” length for one panel.

This works perfect for extra wide fabric, which is what I used.  For this panel, I would only need 1 yd. of 54” fabric.

*Note:  You will need a bit less blackout material.  For the blackout material, don’t measure the seam allowances, except the top loop, which adds about 4” to the length.

Cut out the fabric according to your measurements, and lay the blackout material on top of the wrong side of your fabric, making sure the fabric has a 1” seam allowance on both sides AND the top.  There will be about 6” of  fabric showing on the bottom. 

Begin taking the raw edges of the fabric and fold in half, so that the raw edge meets the edge of your blackout material then fold the fabric again and pin.  See pictures for how to fold the corners.

Sew top and sides of fabric to the blackout material.

Next, fold over the top of you curtain 2-3” for your loop.  You have figured in enough for 3”, but I opted for a smaller loop, so the picture shows 2”.  Pin in place, and sew a seam close to the edge.   I simply followed the seam I had already made.

For the bottom, fold over ½” then fold fabric in half until It meets but does not overlap your blackout material.  Pin in place and sew a seam close to the edge.  You DO NOT need to sew this part of your curtain to the blackout material.  Just let it hang!

Now that you’ve got it down, go do it again for the other panel!

Since I made these for my little girls’ room, I just use a ribbon for a tie-back if I need them open.

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One thought on “Blackout Curtains

  1. Pingback: Are dark blackout curtains effective at keeping the heat out of a room? | The Best Blackout Blinds

  2. Koozies Expert

    Not certain if I come to an agreement with everything here, (I quibble) but for the most component you’re dead on. This is some thing my husband and I are interested and I desire to get him to read and comment on too.

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