It has been YEARS since I've used my sewing machine, but after searching for the perfect cafe curtain for my kitchen window for months, I knew I could make one and be so happy with it. Have you ever gotten tired of searching for something so you decided to make it yourself?
This is definitely a progress post - the kitchen still has a few items left to complete (like removing the old wood blinds brackets!) but I wanted to share this DIY immediately. Turns out it's tough to take a good photo of backlit curtains ;)
My kitchen window is 36" wide and I used two panels of fabric, each 30" wide, so I had room to make my pleats. I used a basic linen from my local fabric store...I spent $14 on fabric, $8 on curtain rings, and $4 on a basic tension rod, so I feel great about the cost of this DIY.
Measure your window and decide the size of your panels. Then you'll sew a basic hem on 3 sides. On the 4th side (the top of the curtain), you'll sew a wide hem - around 3 inches, and this is where your pleats will be.
After hemming your panels, you'll use pins to mark where you want your pleats. You could measure them out to be exact, or you can eyeball them like I did ;) your first step to creating your pleats is this single fold. Pin all of your single folds to make sure your spacing and fold sizes are the same.
Then you can use your sewing machine to sew one single line stitch down your fold, exactly where your pin is. This will create a "loop" of fabric where each of your pleats will be.
After sewing your "loops," you will push the center of your loop down to create 2 mini loops, forming your double pleat out of each loop of fabric.
Pinch your two mini loops together at the base of the thick hem, and sew the loops together. I ran them through my sewing machine, but you could easily do a few stitches by hand. You can see my stitches in the photo below.
Iron your panels to create more crisp pleats or you can skip this step for a more rustic look. I ironed mine to get out a few wrinkles in the fabric. Then attach your curtain panels with your curtain rings/clips every few inches on the back of the panels.
Then you can hang your tension rod and adjust any clips, as needed, to make sure your panels are hanging evenly. My two panels can easily open in the middle to let more light in, and I love how they look! I might transition to a bracketed curtain rod later, but this tension rod is perfect for now and a great way to test out this style. One of my next kitchen projects is to add wood trim around all of our windows, and I can't wait to see how it all comes together!
I hope this was helpful! DM me @rhondajenkins if you need help and tag me if you make some of your own!