Hemming – Step 6 of our How to make Curtains guide

To those who may have landed here looking for a guide to hemming ready made curtains. This page contains part of our guide to making curtains from scratch. Please take a look at our guide ‘How to shorten curtains the easy way‘ instead.

Step 6: Hemming

Hemming… a relatively straight forward stage of making curtains. There are a couple things to consider though.

  1. What size hem would you like?
  2. Which type of stitching will you choose?

What size hem?

The ‘Norm’ if you like, would be to have a 3 inch (7.5cm) hem. However if you are making curtains that are quite large or long, you may find that a 4 inch (10cm) hem gives proportionately better appearance. Or, if your curtains are going to be quite short, hemming them with a 2 inch (5cm) hem would be sufficient. However for the sake of this guide, we will be sticking with the norm, and hemming our curtains with a 3 inch (7.5cm) hem.

Assuming you followed step 3 and made use of our Curtain fabric calculator, you should have a 6 inch (15cm) allowance for the bottom hem.

So, taking one of the pieces of fabric we joined in step 5, lay it out face down with the bottom closest to you. Now, working your way from one side to the other, fold up 6 inches (15cm). Smooth out the fold as you go and place a pin at reasonable intervals as close to the crease as possible. This crease (crease 1), will be the bottom of your curtain.

(If you wish, you can place the pin further up and iron the crease. Personally I find this much more time consuming and not really necessary.)

Next, working from side to side again, tuck the cut edge under and down in to crease 1. Again, smooth out the new crease as you go, and move the pin from crease 1 to the new one (crease 2). When moving the pins, be sure the pin goes through all three layers of fabric.

Right, that’s one ready for sewing. I imagine you can guess what I’m going to say next… Yeap!… Now do the same to the other piece of fabric. 🙂

Which stitch?

What do you mean – which stitch?

Well, when I’m hemming curtains for our customers, some request that I do a ‘Blind hem‘. This type of stitch is used when you don’t what to see a row of stitches on the face of your fabric. Blind hemming can be done by hand or many sewing machines also have this function.

Other customers don’t mind if you can see a row of stitches on the front of their curtains. Like me, they often comment.. “Who goes around inspecting the bottom of your curtains!”.

Once you have decided which stitch to use for hemming your curtains, please feel free to sew along close to crease 2 on both of your ‘almost curtains’. You can remove the pins as you go.

That’s the hemming done 🙂

What’s next?

What we do next depends on your answer to step 1.

16 thoughts on “Hemming – Step 6 of our How to make Curtains guide

  1. argh – you’ve left me high and dry with no Step 7a or 7b – so I don’t know how to finish my curtains. help help – where’s the final piece in the jigsaw!?

    • Hi Sue. My apologies, We have been so busy lately that I haven’t even had time to log in to reply to comments for a while. I’m off to complete Step 7a as soon as I’ve finished replying to you, and Step 7b should be completed in the next few days.

  2. These instructions are brilliant, I need to make lined curtains though for my baby’s bedroom so waiting for step 7b to be published before I order my material. My curtain pole is approx 200cm long but my curtain width is 137cm. As I’m going to make tab top curtains I’ve decided to just buy enough fabric for one width per curtain as I think trying to join them together will be too difficult! Do you think that will be ok? I’m not bothered if there isn’t too much gather.

    • Hi Laura, Yes, one width per curtain would be ok and would still cover your window. You would however, have very little gather when the curtains are pulled.

  3. No step 7b! Luckily I am reading ahead before starting my curtains, but now I dont want to start until I have read this. Do you know when this will be? So far I think your instructions have been great!

  4. Please put up instructions for making the lined curtains. I’m all ready to start making them but can’t find 7b?

  5. Hello
    I really like the tone of your how to guides, but despite the many times I have made curtains and blinds, the hardest part is getting the first cut top edge straight ! Sounds simple I know but if the set square u have is not the width of the fabric it’s hard to get the opposite side level. Folding fabric in half length ways does not always work if I have quite a length to work with on a five foot kitchen table, ! Moaning ! Yes wish I had a better work room.

  6. Hi
    I am currently trying to hem bought curtains as they are too long. I need to take them up 16inches but am hesitant to chop this off. Would a doubled 8inch hem work?

    • Hi Cindy, I can see no harm in trying a double 8 inch hem. Depending on the weight(thickness) of your curtain fabric, having such a deep hem may affect the natural wave of the gather though. If you do decide to try and find the curtains don’t hang correctly, you can always go back and reduce the size of the hem after.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *