Aug 5, 2014
Here's my curtain fabric choice.
It's a 100% polyester, semi-shear flax weave. One of the best things about it is that it's 110" wide -- which means all I needed were six yards (and I only had to cut the fabric once, width-wise). Having had linen curtain panels for the last few years, the nicest thing about this poly is the drape: heavy and fluid. The color is "silver," i.e., a pale gray.
It's a bit less sheer than the linen we had, but the weave has more visible texture and a slight sheen. It has more of a mid-century modern feel.
The cut edges were jagged, so the first thing I had to do was cut even horizontal lines on both ends.
Fortunately, the grain of the fabric is easy to see, so using my triangle, I ruled a straight line and cut along it with my rotary cutter (on the floor: my tried-and-true cutting surface). Next, I found the exact halfway point, and cut the six yards in two.
Now I had two equal panels ready to be hemmed.
I wanted the top hem to be of a width similar to the previous curtains. I turned the edge under 1/2" and pressed (the poly responded very well to my steam iron). Then I folded a 4 1/2" inch hem and pinned it all along the width of the panel.
Fortunately I already had matching thread. I zigzagged along the edge (upon it, really). The stitching is completely invisible.
Next, I attached the ring clips, spacing them evenly. I'm keeping the selvage along the side edges and simply trimming the visible fringe.
Maybe because this fabric is heavier than the linen, the hem doesn't fall in neat folds (as you can see above). Then I remembered the reason we'd used the ring clips in the first place: without them, the ready-made West Elm linen panels were too short for the window; the rings dropped them down nearly 5".
These won't be hemmed for a few days yet, so I decided to attach the second panel without the rings, and instead simply run the rod through the hem. You can see the difference below.
Michael thinks the curtains look better without the rings. I like the idea of rings but I have to admit that the ring-less side looks neater and the fabric falls more naturally into even pleats. (It's still easy to open and close and it's not like we're going to be opening and closing them every ten minutes anyway.)
What do you think: go with the ring clips or just the rods alone? Or is there another (relatively simple) option that would be even better?
Thanks for your help and have a great day, everybody!