Tuesday, January 25, 2011

EZ Pottery Barn Inspired Curtain Tutorial


Yippee!  The new curtains passed muster! 

You know the old saying, if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again?

Well, for the record, I really do appreciate you all pushing me to go back and take another whack at it.  And I DO like the new version better than the first, and if you hadn’t pushed, the burlap would still be there and Mike would be hating it every time he stepped into the kitchen.  Which would be bad, cause he does all the cooking! (however, the burlap treatment will be re-used in another less visible area soon, so think of it as just being exiled for now, ok?)

So Thank you again for being such good bloggy friends and not paying any attention to my spoiled brat theatrics. ( I was just kidding about the hate part, really!)

AND I actually had requests from some of you for a tutorial on my Pottery Barn inspired tie curtains.


I hope this is somewhat useful, it really is a lot easier than it sounds! 


Start with a piece of already washed and bleached drop cloth.

I used one that I had prepped last summer and put away.  Miss Mustard Seed has a very good tutorial for prepping new drop cloths, be sure to check it out.  I refer to it often, she is one smart lady!

For the kitchen valance length curtains I actually had a leftover piece that was just the right size. 

One end was the factory hem so that became the bottom of the curtain.

The other side was a raw ripped edge, that is the side you want to use for the ties.

Another good thing that MMS points out about drop cloth fabric;  it rips evenly! 

VERY important to this whole process!


Determine how long you want your ties to be. 

I chose 11 inches for mine.  (mostly because It would leave me a 12 inch valance, and I was just trying to make the piece of fabric I had work)


Draw a line across the fabric at the 11” mark.


Grab a ruler and decide how wide you want the strips; I chose to go with 2 inch strips.


Snip a small starter cut every 2 inches along the entire edge of the fabric.



Now go back and rip at each cut to the pencil line.  It tears easily, so be careful not to get carried away and rip too far past!


This is what it will look like when done.


Next part takes the longest.

Start tying the knots to your curtain rod.  Choose a knot that  looks good to you.

Just try to keep it consistent. 

I used a knot that reminded me of a necktie knot.  Start at the left end of the rod.  The second  tie will come over the back of the rod,  pull that over the rod to the front(we’ll call that the Back tie), take the first tie, wrap it all the way around the back tie and tuck it through the top of the knot and pull it to hang down in front of the back tie. 


I’ll try to get some pictures of the actual knot process and update this, but first I have to get Mike to hold the camera for me while I do it

It will end up shorter in length and hanging in the front of the over tie.

Snug it up by pulling the back tie down (it slips right through like a necktie knot)

I’m sure this doesn’t make sense, so just play with it until you get a look you like.


Tip:  try to make the number of ripped ties even.  If you have an odd one (like I did) you can disguise it, but it would be smarter to keep the number even.


Now for the dining room curtains. 

If you have curtains that are already hemmed on both ends like I did, you can add the ties to the top this way.

Rip a bunch of long strips, cut them to size (mine were approx 22”)


Fold the strips in half lengthwise. 


Sew the folded end to the top of the curtain material, leaving about 2 inches between each set.  I didn’t measure, however,  wider spacing will let the rod at the top show more, closer will make the ties cover the rod completely.

If your fabric is more than double the width of the window (for shirring) then go a little wider apart so it’s not too tight at the top.

007 009

Tie them up to the curtain rod the same way as the first set.

Or for a completely no-sew retrofit, as in this photo-


do as I did the first time and add pinch style cafe rings to the top of the curtain, hang it, then take the ties and wrap them around the rod, covering each cafe ring and then tying your knot.  It will look the same, only if you slide the curtains open the rings might start to show.

That’s it!

If you make these, please come back and show me. ok?


blog signature 


I’m linking this to Make it for Monday, at Cottage Instincts.  Cindy featured my first post about the Pottery Barn inspired curtains, so I thought I would link up the tutorial for this week. 


I’m linking this up to Meg’s Everything but the kitchen sink party at A Little Knick Knack.


  1. yay! great tute! I'm so happy you have all THIS behind you!
    I like your new backdrop! I KNOW I don't have snow on my screen. Yesterday, I thought I had dirt all over my computer screen. heheheh

    have a good day!

  2. Now are you clever... I would have stupidly ripped them off and sewed them back on... I love how you think... easy

    Thanks for the tut and the directions to bleach... I want to do that and I knew I saw how somewhere??.

    I am so happy that you got over your little snit and like us all again... hahahahaha

    Love ya...Deb

  3. OK, I love these curtains. Thanks for the tutorial. I bought one of those dropcloths at Lowes to actually use as a dropcloth the other day and was disappointed that it wasn't as thick as I was expecting (I thought they would be more like tent canvas). But they are perfect for this sort of thing. All the sudden it makes sense why MMS can make slipcovers out of them! All this time I thought she was sewing the tent canvas type.

  4. That's almost too easy to be true! Since I love to sew sooo much, these would be perfect for a room I want to redo this year.

  5. I got lost a little on the neck tie tying but it's probably just me. It easier for me to figure it out if I have something in front of me. They came out really cute. I do think the burlap one would be cute in a laundry room!

  6. You are the BEST, my girl - thank you soooo much, this is exactly what I needed! I got lost at the knot part too - but I DO know that it was just me... luckily I married a sailor, who can help me come up with a perfect knot for these curtains. Bahaha, who am I kidding, I think I will just learn to tie a necktie! ;) Love these, Rose - you did so great!

  7. Thanks for the tutorial!!! Now to find a drop cloth.......

  8. love how your curtains turned out, especially with the tags on them. as for the burlap ones, i must be one of the few who really loooooves them. i think if they were hung so that they didn't droop in the middle they would be better.

  9. Hi I am a new follower and so excited you posted this on A little Knick Knack link party!! I have to try this ~ I have been looking for the right curtains and can't seem to find what I want. This is perfect!!

  10. Ha! I love this! I have been on a hunt to figure out curtains for my kitchen and this idea is getting pinned! Thanks for the inspiration! It also helps that I picked up a drop cloth just like the one shown for FREE at a garage sale this summer, I've just been waiting for a good project and this might be it! : )

  11. What do your tags spell out on the curtains? Or am I seeing things? HAHA!!!!! LOVE these curtains too:)


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