Boring, But Necessary Sewing: Kitchen, Living and Dining Room Curtains

When I first bought my house a long long eight years ago (where does the time go??), my mom forced me to get my home dec sewing done. You see, I was staying with them while between apartment and home. And, I was buying fabric for all my sewn house projects. She would literally nag me to sew until she was tap dancing on my last nerve. So, I would sew slip covers, curtains and pillows just to get her to STOP NAGGING ME. It was great. I moved in an everything was already sewn!

Enter my kitchen curtains. They faded years ago (you can see especially in the middle). I get a lot of sun through the back window and door, but didn’t want to completely block the light, so I have cafe curtains. I want the windows covered enough so no one can peep in.

I’ve had this primary color plaid Marimekko fabric in my stash for at least three years and just couldn’t get myself to make them. I finally did this weekend after realizing I’m hosting a dinner party this Sunday and my curtains look like @$$.

There. Done. Seriously. These barely took an hour to make. I am mad I wasn’t paying enough attention to detail. These should be mirror images with the colored lines matching. But, I didn’t even think about it until I was finished. And, there is no way I’m sewing another panel.

The second curtain project was for my living room.

Plain and simple drapes. These two took a little over an hour. They are unlined, I’ll never close them. I just wanted something so the windows didn’t look naked.

The third curtain project is in my dining room. The same print from the living room (so they look ‘connected’). Simple little things held in by tension rods.

Obviously, I will be sewing a matching air conditioner cover next winter.

This was my exciting holiday weekend. Ohh. Did I mention I also got my carpets cleaned. Yessir. I was living it up.

The best thing about getting these done is that it’s two bolts of fabric out of the stash. Now, if I could just get around to my bedroom and bathroom curtains, that would be the last bolts of home dec!


  1. You’ve inspired me. We moved here 7 months ago and I purchased fabric for the living room and loft at that time and have yet to hang a single drape…and not all the pictures are even hung up yet. So, this week, that goes off my list! Thanks

  2. Cushions, pillows.
    They eat up stash fabric wonderfully.
    I see two pillows on either end of your sofa , one larger, one smaller.
    A couple for your chairs also.
    They will eat up your stash and bring it all together.
    I call it “Stashbustin’ Decoratin”.

  3. Every time I need to make curtains, I drag my feet. Seriously. Yet all it is is a bunch of math, measuring, cutting, sewing, and — le voila’ — done! Every step is easy, yet so very boring.

  4. I hate home dec sewing too so really applaud you for using your holiday weekend to get these made up. Now that being said, I really love what you chose for the living room and dining room. These are fantastic. Love how they make the rooms look finished and connected.

  5. I have that same Marimekko rat holed to replace my kitchen curtains. Only thing is I’m still attached to my faded primary Ikea fabric curtains. Yours look great as do all the projects, inspiring work.

  6. I, too, have a curtain project hovering on my shoulder nagging me. Our front glassed-in porch gets a ton of sun in the morning and up through about 2 p.m. and I need to make some curtains with black-out linings (or black-out curtain fabric; has that also) for the 5 windows and the glass-paned door. Since we don’t need them all the time, I’m thinking that a better choice might be either fabric-covered pull blinds or Roman shades or something rather than curtains, but there it is. Making ‘soft furnishings’ as my UK relations call them, are sort of boring but when I’m done, I always feel highly productive.

    • My bedroom curtains haven’t been sewn yet because I really need to use black out curtain fabric also. It would let me sleep past 7:00 a.m.!

  7. I bought my very first sewing machine about seven years ago to make curtains for my living. I have a quite large bay window and the curtains I was looking at cost more than twice the cost of the sewing machine so I thought the machine would pay for itself. I never did make the curtains (stumbled upon some affordable ready-made ones before I found fabric). I never thought I’d end up making all my clothes – just the odd simple skirt – but I’ve since ended up with about 80% of my wardrobe made by me. The only home decor sewing I’ve done is two cushion covers.

    • A common, but true story, LOL. I do think that making your own curtains can be a huge money saver — especially if they are lined and long.

  8. Hahaha! I always think of Elaine’s essays at The Selfish Seamstress when I contemplate a pile of boring boring boring boring boring boring boring home dec projects. Still, it’s been six years since I hung plain khaki cotton at my south-facing windows, and the simple curtains are probably rotten by now. Will I shred them and spin them for rag yarn, or put them straight into the landfill? Your kitchen checks are darling. Now go sew something interesting.

  9. There’s nothing like hosting a dinner party to get home decorating moving, right? It’s very sad that I’ve been living in the same house for 11 years and still have several windows uncovered. They are just SO BORING! I like to laugh at people that ask me to sew curtains for them, cause I can’t even get around to making my own!

  10. Attention!!! OCD Alert for one Miss Celie:
    The kitchen curtains are terrific. NOBODY noticed how the lines matched up. Very cute cafe curtains! 🙂 BTW, I’m in BWI today for business…any great can’t-miss-’em fabric stores or sewing emporiums?

    • Thank you! For fabric, it’s outside of the downtown area, but you should try to get to A Fabric Place on Falls Rd. It’s the same owner of Michael’s Fabrics. Pricey, but very nice things. If you are close to DC, by all means hustle to G Street Fabric.

  11. It all looks great! I definitely need to get crack-a-lackin’ on my sewing. I get maybe one project a week done, but it should be more. Thanks for the inspiration!

  12. Oh dear, I am hopeless with curtains. I still have to do my dining room ones and the ones in my bedroom have been waiting over 2 years to be hemmed!! Good job on your crafty-ness.

  13. Dayum! I thought I was the only one with that kind of weekend excitement! Your drapes look really nice. One home dec weekend in 8 years isn’t too bad, is it?

  14. your drapes look good and I love the painting of the squares in the living room thanks for the idea!!

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