The process of lining ready-made curtains is not difficult. By following the proper steps, the results give the appearance of a purchased product. Anyone with sewing experience can complete the project in a day or less, depending on the size of the curtains.
The following supplies are needed:
Thread to match the curtain and liner, sewing machine or hand needles, scissors, pins, measuring tape, tailor’s chalk, the curtains, and of course, the lining fabric. A large, flat surface such as a kitchen table or dining table is useful as a worktable. Place a plastic covering over it to protect it from pins.
Lay the curtains face side down on the table. Carefully measure the length and the width. Since most curtain tops have gathered, measure the width at the bottom. The length measurement starts at the seam of the top folded over fabric and extends to two inches before the bottom of the curtain. Add one inch to the length measurement and to each of the sides for seams to enclose raw edges.
Careful selection of the lining material is important. Select fabric whose care label matches the curtain fabric, such as “washable” or “dry clean only.” If choosing thermal or black outlining fabric, study the care label before purchase, as many cannot be dry cleaned or tossed in a washer. For washable fabric, pre-wash to engage shrinkage before cutting or sewing.
Cut the lining material to the measurements. Fold over and press one-half inch along each side seam. Fold over and press one more half-inch, enclosing the raw edges. Stitch along the seams. Fold over and press the top seam as you did the sides. Leave the bottom seam alone for now.
If the curtains have gathered at the top, use a gathering stitch, or running stitch to gather the top seam to match. Using the sewing machine or hand stitching, attach the lining to the bottom of the curtain’s top seam. This hides the stitching from the front. Alternatively, attach hook and loop tape or snaps to the lining and the curtain for easy removal. This allows the use of different linings, such as sheers for parties, have linings that change with the seasons, or colors that change with the décor.
Hang the curtains and wait two to three days. The weight of the fabric will allow the lining to relax and stretch somewhat. This is the same process curtain makers use. After hanging, take the curtain and lining down, and using the same process for the top and side seams, sew the hem.
Making linings for ready-made curtains is a great way to save money and have curtains that match any décor. By making removable linings, the savings increase. Friends and neighbors will complement the cleverness of the lining maker.