Peacock curtains!

We moved house in the summer, and the new house had no curtains. I had one old set that we put up in the bedroom, but decided to make ones for every other room.

I found some beautiful fabric months ago that has been sat in my sewing room ever since. It is a thick blue and cream woven peacock fabric which is actually reversible – you can have blue peacocks on a cream background, or cream peacocks on a blue background. My lounge is mainly cream, so I went for the side of the fabric with more blue.
Today I finally got a full afternoon to make the curtains! (Full project approx 5 hrs with snack break.)

I’ve never made curtains before, but I have studied a few professionally-made sets, and had a long curtain-making chat with my grandmother this morning so muddled my way through…

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I started by laying out the fabric and the lining on my lounge floor, which was the biggest surface I could manage. I also brought my sewing machine out of the sewing room as the sewing room wasn’t really set up for large quantities of stiff fabric!

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I pinned the side seams, and stitched the lining so it wouldn’t be seen from the back.

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Once I had done both side seams, I gave it a good press.

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I stitched the header tape along the top, hiding the lining seam, and leaving one end open so I could ruch the curtain.

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I pressed the bottom turn up and invisibly stitched it up.

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I pulled the cords and ruched the top, and hung it up to check it was ok before doing the other one!
I did the second one in the same way (albeit a lot quicker now I knew what I was doing) and made sure it was the same length when I hemmed it.

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Once hung, they looked beautiful, and actually are the same length!

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I made sure the ruching was even, and tied off the ends but didn’t cut them. I threaded them through a curtain ring behind, so they are invisible. By not cutting them, if I move later on and want slightly wider curtains, I can un-ruch these a bit and they might fit.

I’m pretty proud of these as a first go at curtains, and they certainly do the job. It’s nice to finally have something covering the window in the lounge too!
I know I’ve glossed over some details on this post, but I’m happy to answer any questions if you’re looking for advice on your first curtains – just add a comment

 

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Peacock Arielle

My latest project has been an Arielle skirt from a pattern by Tilly Walnes. I bought the peacock fabric without a plan, then I saw this pattern and thought it would be perfect.

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Just before I started to sew this, we moved house and I got to use one of the bedrooms as a sewing studio! That is about halfway fixed now, but I splashed out on a new cutting mat and a rotary cutter!

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This sped up my cutting no end. The pattern was a joy to follow, really straightforward and quick to make up.

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I picked out a peacock blue lining to line the skirt with. By this point, it was coming together so quickly I decided I was going to wear it when I spoke at the CIDM Best Practices conference in Florida at the end of September.

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I added some purple velvet ribbon to the waist to help stop my top riding up (not on the pattern). The pattern had some beautiful touches, like the understitching above that really took it out of the “quick sew” class, and into a beautifully structured garment.

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There is the finishing on the inside at the bottom – the pattern has no visible stitching on the outside, which is a nice touch.

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And the buttons. I sourced these peacock buttons from the Czech Glass Bead shop on Etsy. I have three different coloured peacocks, and a peacock eye on the skirt.

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Overall, I’m really pleased about this skirt, and I’m planning to make it again soon in a different fabric – it’s so comfortable!