How To Make Your Own Insulating Curtain Panels

With winter approaching, it is time to put away your sheer drapes, and put up something that offers more insulation. If you're looking to save money on insulating drapes, you can make your own for a fraction of a cost of buying new ones. Here's how.

Measure your window and purchase fabric.

Begin by measuring the distance from the top of your window to the floor. This is the length you will need your curtain panels to be. They provide better insulation when they go all of the way down to the floor, even if your window is not that long. Add 4 inches to the length you measure to account for seams.

When you go to the fabric store, look for a thick, fleece material that comes on a 60-inch bolt. You can choose any pattern you want. Have the fabric cutter cut you two lengths that are as long as the measurement you made above, plus your 4 inches. This will make 2 panels, which is enough for one window. If you're outfitting more than one window, you'll need to purchase more pieces of fabric.

Hem the bottom of the curtain panels.

The great thing about fleece material is that it does not fray, so you don't have to worry about hemming every edge. you will however, want to hem the bottoms of the curtains just to give them a neat appearance. Start this process by measuring 2 inches up from the bottom. Mark a line with chalk at this 2-inch point, and then fold the fabric over, pinning it so that the edge meets up with this line. Then, use your sewing machine to sew straight across, about 1/8 inch down from the edge of that folded-over piece of fabric. You've now created a hem in your curtain panel. Repeat this for each subsequent panel.

Create the rod space in the top of the curtain.

You will not create the space at the top of the panel through which the curtain rod will slide. The process is the same as creating the bottom hem, except this time you are going to make a chalk line 6 inches down from the top of the panel. Then, sew straight across about 1/8 inch from the bottom of the folded over piece. Make sure you've folded over both the top and the bottom of the panel in the same direction; both folds should be on the "back" side of the curtain.

That's it! You now have simple, insulating curtain panels for a lot less than you would pay in the store. All it takes is two rows of stitching on each piece of material. For more information, visit sites like