I have spent, I don’t know… DOZENS of hours trying to find curtains for our living room.
They needed to be at least 96″ long for two windows: one 120 inches wide, one more standard, like 30″ wide. I wanted a really full look which would mean many panels = expensive.
I started with local shops (very few local shops have ready-made curtains, by the way), then moved to chains: Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, World Market, Pier One, Macy’s, TJMaxx, Homegoods, Marshall’s, Home Depot, Lowes- you name it, I went. So uninspired by what I found, and rarely did they have longer than 84″ panels in store. Of course I looked online and I found a few I liked at a cost upwards of $700 for one window. Come on.
I can sew, so I went to Joann’s to see what fabrics they had. I came out empty-handed per usual. It’s just curtains! Why is this so difficult? I see great curtains on TV and in magazines. I know they exist. Where are they hiding?
I give up.
A week goes by and for some reason I find myself in Joann’s again. What do they say is the definition of crazy? Doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result? TO MY AMAZEMENT: I stumbled upon a decent sized roll of Duponi-Silk-esque (close enough) antique gold fabric marked “Special Order Cut” $29.99/yd. I took it up to the cutting counter to see if my trusty 40% off coupon would work and how many yards were on the roll. A young man, who turns out to be into design as much as I am helps me. A lot. He said the fabric was originally $35/yd, marked down to $29.99 because it was a return but currently it is ringing up at $12.99. SCORE! He adds, “Well, right now we are putting up signs around the store that all our sale fabric is 50% off- once they are up, we have to honor those prices, so it would be $6.50 a yard.” WHAAAAAT??? I almost hugged him. I calculate through nearly 30 minutes of (for me) complex algebra that yes, there is enough fabric for this to work- 13 yards will do just fine. Especially for the price. To quote the fabulous Tim Gunn, I’ll “Make it work!” I grabbed 13 yards of lining fabric (40% off!), some matching thread, and drapery weights and was out the door for $160.
I followed this wonderful tutorial from Grace Bonney on Design Sponge but used creative license when I wanted or needed to. The tutorial shows you how to make pleated drapes, which was the original plan, but I only had 13 yards and while beautiful, pleating eats up too much fabric. So I made 99″ long flat panels and used standard 1″ curtain clips with a simple drapery rod.
Clearly we painted among other upgrades. A future post will cover the coffered ceiling, recessed lighting, trim and fireplace upgrades! Funny story about the paint, but that is for another time. Lets just say I’m glad Mike and I will still be celebrating our 2-year wedding anniversary next month :)