In the coming months, the temperatures will start dropping way way down, and the heat in everyone's houses will have to slowly start climbing up. Here is a way to keep the heat in your house UP and your gas bills DOWN, while keeping your home looking stylish!
If you are like me, the windows in your house may not be the greatest. Ours are over 45 years old, and are PRETTY drafty, especially in the sub-zero Chicago winter. With money being tight, we really don't have the funds to have them replaced, but we don't have the money to heat the whole outdoors, either! Last year, my mom came to me with this crazy idea to put fleece over the windows! At first she wanted to TAPE the fleece into the window pane. I started to really think about the idea, though, and with all of the amazing prints available in polar and blizzard fleece, I suddenly thought to myself "HEY! They would make great curtains!!!"
The thing about fleece in general that makes it a wonderful insulator is that not only it is a tightly woven and felted polyester, but it is also wind (and draft) resistant, and it is water resistant. This is why people use fleece for diaper covers, because it will cause any wetness to bead up on it's surface, which is really good if you are using it on windows that are drafty! It essentially makes a barrier between the inside of the house, and any drafts that can leak through the window jamb! Fleece is also a fabric that technically does not need to be sewn! Once you make a cut in fleece, it will not fray, so these curtains and a NO SEW PROJECT!
First things first, you need to take measurements. I am using my front window for this demonstration. My window is 80" by 70". When you purchase your fleece, you need to check the WIDTH of the fabric. This will be on the end of the bolt. I needed to cover 80 inches across, and my fleece was 60" wide. I knew I wanted a fancy look because this is my studio and living room, so I decided to do some solid panels in the middle, and pattern on the sides. So each panel, I needed to be about 30". (You want a lot more, because you don't want the curtain to be flat across, you want some bunching, do it has a nice drape.) As the fabric came off the bolt, all I would need to do it cut it right in half. For length, I added on some inches to the top and bottom, so I would have adequate coverage on the window.
So when I ordered the fabric, I got 5 yards of white, and 5 yards of my pattern. Each panel you see is 2.5 yards from top to bottom and 30" wide. Once I had my pieces cut, I needed a way to HANG them.
For the rod, you need something a little sturdy. I have an aluminum rod I got at Target. The rods that lay INTO a hook extending from the wall seem to work best, and are the easiest to hang your curtains from. Mount your hardware, but do not put the rod in place yet.
Lay your first fabric panel out on the floor. At the TOP of the panel, fold down 1" of fabric. This will create a clean top for your curtain. Then grab a pair of scissors, and make slits through the folded over fabric, about 1" apart. Any more between slits, and you will create too big of a gap, and you will get a draft.
Toss the rod up, and you are done! Really, that is IT! All done! I added some tie-backs, to keep them out of the way during the day. These will help control drafts in colder weather, and they ALSO are wonderful for blocking light! I have a solid pattern in my room that blocks to much light, I can take a nap during the day, and think it is night! This would be wonderful for someone working the day shift that needs to sleep during the day!
** An extra money saving tip** Purchase your fleece when it is on sale. At fabric stores like Joanns or Hancock Fabrics, use a coupon, and purchase your yardage in ONE piece. Each % off coupon is good for ONE cut of fabric. So 6 yards of 9.99 fleece at 50% off would give you curtains for 30$!!
Brooke is the owner and seamstress at Brooke Van Gory Designs. She lives in The Chicago suburbs with her two kiddos, and her rock star husband! You can shop BVG here, and follow her on Google+ here.