Curtains can change the overall look of a room. It provides a sophisticated and elegant feel and even makes the room look stylish. If you are staying in a cold region, it adds to the warmth of the room, not to mention the privacy it offers.
But getting curtains of the right size is a challenge. Unless you get it stitched, curtains can either be too long or too short. If your curtain is too long, then you can get it adjusted through the process of hemming. Here we discuss a few techniques for hemming curtains without sewing it.
How to Hem Curtains Without Sewing?
For hemming a curtain you need:
- Measuring tape
- Hemming tape
Step 1. Measure the required length
You should first hang the curtain on the rod to check the required length. You can either make the curtain touch the floor or a few inches above the floor. How long the curtain should be is purely a personal choice. You can use a measuring tape to measure the required length.
If you find hanging curtain to be a cumbersome task, then you can measure the length from the curtain rod. But then you should leave provision for rings or loops in your measurement for hanging the curtain.
Step 2. Spread the curtain flat
You need to lay the curtain with the wrong side up on a flat surface for easy trimming. Because of the large size, it is best to lay the curtain on the floor. If you have a small curtain and a big table, you can spread it on the table.
Step 3. Fold the curtain
The general rule with curtain hem is that the larger the curtain, the wider the hem. Also, remember that curtain hems are always folded twice. Here are some standard measurements for curtain hems
For small curtains, the hem should be at least 2 inches wide. Thus, you should have a 4-inch extra fabric for making a hem.
For standard size curtain, the hem is 3-4 inches wide. You should have an extra fabric of 6-8 inches for making the hem.
Longer curtains should have a 5-inch wide hem. Thus, the extra fabric that you require for the hem is 10 inches.
Based on the length of the curtain, you can fold the hem and pin it up. You can even iron the folded hem to keep it flat. If there is excess fabric, you can cut it off.
If your curtain has a lining, it should be kept separate as linings are normally tucked with the side hems.
Step 4. Iron with hem tape
The hem tape or stitch witchery is used to bind together two layers of fabric. Measure the curtain’s hem width and cut the hem tape slightly shorter than the curtain’s hem width. Lay it flat between the back of the curtain and the folded hem.
Heat the iron and place it above the hem for a few seconds. Repeat this throughout the width of the curtain. While doing this, remember to check the package of the hem tape for instruction.
Some hem tapes come with adhesive on one side and paperback on the other. First, you should iron the adhesive part to one side for this type of tapes, then peel the paper and iron again for sticking the other side.
How to Hem the Sides of the Curtain?
Step 1. Measure the width of the curtain
The side hems of the curtain are usually 1 ½ inches wide and are double folded. You need three inches of fabric on one side for hemming. Thus, the curtain should have 6 inches of extra fabric for side hemming.
Step 2. Fold the curtain
Mark 1 ½ inch from the side of the curtain at multiple places and fold it. Once folded, press it with an iron and fold it one more time to get the desired hem. You can also use pins for holding the hem in place.
Step 3. Tuck the lining
If the curtain comes with a lining, then cut the lining to the desired width. Then tuck the raw edges of the lining in between the side hems.
Step 4. Place the hem tape
Cut hem tape slightly shorter than the width of the side hem. Tuck it in between the hem and the curtain. While placing the hem tape, make sure that it aligns with the outer side of the hem. Now place a hot iron above the hem for a few seconds. Continue this till you have fused the entire length of the hem.
Now the newly hemmed curtain is ready for hanging.
How to Hem The lining of a Curtain?
Step 1. Measure the length of the hem
As a general rule, the lining hem’s width is usually 1 inch shorter than that of the curtain’s hem. For example, if your curtain hem is 2 inches wide, then the lining hem should be one inch wide. Also, remember that the curtain linings are usually 1 inch shorter than the length of the curtain.
Step 2. Remove the side hem
This step is required if you are hemming a store-bought curtain. For this type of curtains, the lining will be tucked inside the side hem. Open the bottom portion of the side hem to pull out the lining. Now you can adjust the lining to your desired length.
Step 3. Fold the lining
Now you can fold the lining to the desired length. But once folded, the lining should be one inch above the length of the curtain. The lining should no way be of the same length as the curtain.
Step 4. Fuse with a hem tape
Cut hem tape which is slightly shorter than the width of the hem. Tuck it in between the lining fabric and the hem. Place the hot iron on top to fuse it to the fabric.
Step 5. Tuck the lining to the side hem
If you have removed the lining from the side hem, remember to tuck it in and sew the edges.
What to Consider While Hemming Curtain?
1. Always wash the curtain before hemming. This helps to remove starch or any other substance that can hinder the right bonding.
2. If you do not have a sewing machine for hemming, you can either hand sew the hem or use hem tape.
3. If you have multiple curtain panels to hem, it is best to measure the individual panels’ length separately to be on the safer side.
4. If you are using hem tape, check the instruction for use on the package and use it accordingly. Remember to iron on both sides for better adherence.
5. To protect the fabric, you can place a damp cloth between the curtain and iron while pressing the tape. In addition to protecting the fabric, the damp cloth also creates steam, which helps melt the tape well and provides a strong bonding.
6. If you are hemming a store-bought curtain, you can use a seam ripper to undo the stitches.
7. If the curtain fabric is very thick, then you should use an ultra-hold, heavyweight tape for hemming.
8. You can also use fabric glue instead of hemming tape for hemming curtains. But since the fabric glue dries quickly, you should use it on small sections and then move to the next.
9. In the case of sheer or transparent curtain material, do not use glue as it provides an unappealing look.
10. If you have the habit of changing curtains between rooms, then you should tuck the extra fabric inside instead of cutting it off. This way, you can make adjustments, if needed.