How to Cut Sheer Curtains

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Sheer fabrics are most often used for curtains. Sheer curtains dress up a window, while still allowing sunlight to shine through. They are often paired with fabric draperies or a valance to add color and design to the room. Sheer curtains add elegance and softness to a room, but working with sheer fabrics can be difficult. Sheer fabrics often slip and fray, so it is important to know how to properly secure and cut them to have the elegant look you want for your window coverings.

Things You'll Need

  • Sheer curtain fabric
  • Padded cutting mat
  • Pins
  • Metal yard stick
  • Sewing scissors
  • Cutting mat
  • Rotary blade
  • Measure the width of your window and multiply by 3 to allow enough yardage for bunching or pleating. Measure the length of your wall, adding 4 inches for both hems (8 inches total). Buy the necessary amount of sheer fabric.

  • Calculate the length and width you will need for each panel. Sheer fabrics sometimes come very wide on the bolt, up to 114 inches wide. This is to enable you to make curtains without having a seam running down the center of the panel. If your sheer fabric is not wide enough for one panel, you will need to sew a seam, but don't worry, if you make the sheer wide enough for sufficient bunching or pleating, you can hide the seam.

  • Lay out the sheer fabric on a padded cutting mat. If you have one, a padded cutting mat with an opposite color of your sheer will be the easiest way. A padded cutting mat enables you to pin the fabric to the cutting mat, then use a metal yard stick for your straight edge and sharp sewing scissors to cut along the straight line. The metal yard stick helps to anchor the fabric, and the sharp sewing scissors help to make perfect cuts. Even a small amount of dullness in your scissors will chew your fabric instead of cutting it.

  • If you do not have a padded cutting mat, lay down your non-padded cutting mat and carefully lay out your sheer fabric on top of it. Sheer fabric has a tendency to slip and move, so do it slowly and methodically. Once it is laid out exactly as you need, carefully place the metal yard stick along your cutting line, and use a sharp rotary blade to cut the fabric. Apply pressure to the metal yard stick while cutting to reduce slipping.

Tips & Warnings

  • If your cuts end up being a little uneven, you can either lay it out again and recut (Steps 3 and 4), or you can decrease the size of your hem and make it up there. If you make it up with the hem, be careful while sewing that you don't end up making an uneven hem as well.

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