My Least Favorite Project Ever- A Curtain Call

I blame Pinterest for this one.

I saw these awesome curtains there back in the summer or fall, not sure when, but loved them when I saw them.

Aren’t these absolutely gorgeous? I love the mix of reds and black/white. And the best part about these curtains?

No sewing involved!

So I thought, I could do this. I could totally do this and not even break a sweat.

Chuckle, chuckle.

If you want the professional tutorial , go here.

This blogger, by the way, is a designer by trade so of course her curtains look perfect and of course she made it sound so easy. So I first would like to blame her for me taking on this project because had she kept it real, I would have never started this in the first place.

Unless, it’s just me that had a problem with this menial design project and that’s why it seemed so simple. Because in all reality, it probably isn’t something too hard for someone who spent two years at design school. But for a stay at home mom of two with an associate degree in science? Let’s just say I would take Statistics all over again rather than go back and re-create this curtain project.

In all honesty, I needed window treatments in my living room anyway since my old Target un-lined curtains were ruined from years of sun beating down on them. So this was a project of necessity not just one to create something new for the blog. But, and big but here, I also wanted to step outside my comfort zone a little too by creating something other than a cute accent piece for the kids room or a sign for the kitchen. This was an actual big girl project that was going to take more blood, sweat, tears and money than I usually am comfortable using.

Last Saturday, my friend and I got out of the house sans children thanks to her husband. Forever indebted to this man and my husband collectively for letting us get out alone here and there.

God. Bless. Supportive. Husbands.

We got out under the ruse of attending a preschool fair but ended up going to lunch, Target and Pier One because I hear that Pier One has an excellent program for four-year-old’s in the fall.
So while at Target, I found these curtains:

A package of panel curtains in just the right color for only $17.48 on clearance of which I bought two, one for each side of the window. I should state that I was already way ahead of the game financially compared to the blogger who created the inspiration curtains because hers were from Restoration Hardware. Her curtains, I can only ascertain, were probably more than my car payment last month.
So already, I was saving money.
Right?
Right??????
Then, according to the blogger’s instructions, I needed the following:
Black twill fabric.
The blogger never stated how much you need.
I will help you out.
You will need 4 yards for two panels.

 

You will also need:
Heat bond also know as fusible fabric webbing also known as body odor glue.
It smelled like body odor. I swear on my life.
You will definitely need at least three packages but I would get four if I had to do it over.
They only had three at the craft store and I was spending no more money on this project.
Then lastly, you will need this:
Black grosgrain ribbon.
You will need 17 yards of this at least.

Who knew that this would be the bulk of the cost of my project.

I didn’t but now you know.
So here is the tutorial:
Measure out your black twill fabric.

I wanted to make my blocks 14 inches wide (like the blogger did). So I measured out the width of my Target curtains and used chalk (as it erases easily off twill) to mark off where I had to cut.

   I then used a ruler to try and get the cut as even as possible.
Cut out with your scissors.
You will cut four black twill blocks per panel.
My panels were 95 inches long so I only needed four 14 inch blocks but if you had shorter curtains, you would want either the same amount but smaller in width.
I laid the panel on my floor and then placed the blocks onto the panels to see where I wanted them.
I used a tape measure to try to keep the blocks as even as possible.
Then started the ironing.
Lets just say that this is the most ironing I have done in months, years, my entire life.
If you do not like to iron.
Click on the little X on the top right of your page.
This is not the project for you.
If I had known that to begin with, I would have just gone to the bank, taken out a loan and went to Restoration Hardware to buy curtains.
Here I am at the beginning of the project ironing the bonding onto the fabric.

Aww, look how happy I am!!.

naive little woman
So here is my unprofessional tutorial on how to work with Heat Bond:

 

Oh and some other helpful tips before getting into the thick of things:
and

 

So you want to use the heat bond to attach the black twill to the curtains. I lined them up on the curtains ahead of time so I knew how much I had to work with:
And here I am working into the night on it:
Yes I am aware my sweater is inside out.
It was that kind of night around here.
And not the good kind of my sweater is inside out kind of night, if you get my drift.
Then you need to glue on the grosgrain ribbon over the rough edges and yes, there will be rough edges.
I finished one panel in three hours.
Which for someone who may or may not be impatient and needs instant gratification, is a lifetime.
Here is what the one panel looked like when my husband helped me hang it up the next morning:
It looks pretty good except that I had to break out the glue gun.
Yes, the glue gun.
To seal up some of the fabric that wouldn’t hold with the heat bond.
That seemed to help.
In stark comparison, here was me mid day in day two of the curtain project.
I even brought in some reinforcements:
I love my husband so damn much.
He gets me.
And he is mighty fine with a glue gun.
Here is the finished product…please humor me and oooh and aaahhh lavishly.

 

 

I have to say, I do love them.
Like, I wanna sit all night and stare at them, love them.
We are eating dinner tonight in the dining room that faces these curtains.
And every night after.
Now here is the last part of this post that I am a little embarrassed to talk about.
I spent some coin on this project.
Yes, me the ultimate cheapskate who gets giddy when she saves 60 cents on a can of tomato paste, spent some money to create this look.
I had a little conversation with Rebecca about this project while in the middle of it and she did talk me off the ledge a little by explaining that the cost of the inspiration blog’s plain curtains before the project even started cost more than my entire project.
Thanks Rebecca.
So here is the cost breakdown:
– off white curtains: 17.48 each x 2 = 34.96
– black twill fabric: 4 yards x 4.19/yard = 16.76
– ribbon: 17 yards x 1.49/yard = 25.33 (for ribbon?????)
– heatbond: 2.99 x 3 packages = 8.97
for a grand total of….shudder….
$86.02
86 bucks for my curtains.
Just so ya know, that’s:
3 mani’s
or
2 pedi’s
or
1.5 pedi’s and 1.5 mani’s together
or
1.5 hours of massage
or
8 lunches at Panera Bread
or
28 packages of 100 calorie packs
or

86 items at Dollar Tree

or
22 issues of  People magazine
or
67 songs on Itunes
or
17 margarita’s on five dollar margarita night
or
       one pillow at Pottery Barn
I am glad I tried this. I love how it turned out and if we ever move, they’re coming with me.

 

33 thoughts on “My Least Favorite Project Ever- A Curtain Call

  1. Bec@littlelucylu

    This is the most hilarious post ever. I LOVED IT.
    … and it sounds like maybe you NEED those 17 margaritas now!!! :)~
    The curtains look great — and there IS something so rewarding about these projects, isn't there!…? 🙂
    Thanks for making me laugh this morning!
    ~Bec

  2. Christine

    You crack me up. I sat next to these curtains on Sat and was firmly instructed to not look too closely!!! Next time the hubs give us a day off I'll take you out for the margaritas, you've earned them by making me laugh first thing Monday morning!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Maria

    You cracked me up with this one. I applaud you for even attempting it. Everything on Pinterest is so easy, right? Ha!
    I'm you're basic blog voyeur…tried blogging myself, but with a VERY full-time job that leaves little downtime at home, I decided to just live vicariously through others. Really enjoy your blog.
    As to the cost of the panels, $86 doesn't seem like a lot to me…BUT…I live in California ;O) Sadly, that wouldn't get me a one hour massage or two mani/pedis.
    Anyway, keep up the good work! I like chocolate chip cookies :o)

  4. Kari at A Grace Full Life

    @ Heather and Maria-

    I so wish you both had your email enabled so I can email you both back so hope you go back and read this! You both make me laugh. Out loud. Seriously! Thank you both for the great comments. No Heather, I will not be making these for you but I will sit by your side, point and giggle while you make some of your own!

    And Maria, even in Cali there are lots of things you could buy that cost waaaaaay less than these curtains. 🙂 I would rather have your beautiful weather though. If you could buy that, I wouldn't have needed these dang curtains to begin with! 🙂

    Thanks for stopping by and hope you come back!!

  5. the cape on the corner

    those curtains look great (as well they should for all the work you put into them). even if it all added up, at least they can be something you can be proud of, not just that you bought 'em right of a shelf somewhere. your snarky tale cracked me up. not that kinda night around here, lol.

  6. Jen

    LOL! Thanks so much for being real with the rest of us human beings! Your curtains are gorgeous, despite the mental instability they caused. Hey, come on down to http://www.icantstopcrafting.blogspot.com and link this great post (and any others you'd like to show off) to the Head to Head Showdown link party, it's happening right now! Hope to see you there! ~Jen

  7. Katie

    Hahaha!! I know EXACTLY what you mean! Three hours is waaay too long! I'm an instant gratification gal like you – however, your curtains turned out AWESOME! Totally worth the time spent!

  8. Ginny York

    Love the curtains! You are a RIOT! I love the realness of your post! I I have love curtains similar to those for a while the ones I love are on Nesting Place I think he fabric comes striped though. I love the Realness of your blog, you have new follower here 🙂

  9. Faith, Trust and Pixie Dust

    I'm crazy about not just the curtains, but the whole room. It looks magazine worthy! It's my pleasure to feature you in my favorites today. Please feel free to take an "I Was Featured" button if you'd like. And I hope you come back again this Friday.

    Warmly, Michelle

  10. Jenn McGrady

    The curtains are totally GORG!!!! Love love love them. Do pat yourself on the back! I have always wanted to make a set myself….HOWEVER I would need to make six panels for any of the rooms I would use them in! I knew it would be costly as soon as I saw you need so much extra fabric and especially ribbon! I make hair bows for my daughters cheer teams. I KNOW how ribbon can run. You completely entertained me throughout the entire blog. Lol. Keep up the good work. Anything worthwhile is worth the effort!

  11. Kerri Moore

    I love the honesty! I have the same Pinterest post and I do love the curtains but they make it look so easy. You did an awesome job but maybe I'll buy or have someone make the curtains for me. 🙂 My DIY skills are not as extensive as I think they are in my head….

  12. Andrea

    Twitter sent me here! You must have been hanging out there again in your party sequined tank top, so twitter said let’s show them your drapes”. I have not seen these drapes on your blog as of late, and am concerned about their fate and the love you once shared. This project is terrifying and not just because I have only purchased heat and bond by the yard for smaller projects. I would have made such a terrible mess.
    Andrea recently posted…random rant, I guessMy Profile

    1. Kari Post author

      These curtains are probably a nice tee shirt and a pair of chino’s now.
      I gave them to Goodwill eons ago because they started falling apart.
      So TOTALLY worth all of that work.

      Back to my mimosa in tha’ club!

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