Mending my mistake

Let me clarify. I did not mend my mistake, but rather my mom did. I guess I always assumed that when I became a grown up (whatever that means), I would no longer need my mom to make everything better. I’ve realized, though, that sometimes I still need mom to come in and save the day. Like when curtains shrink. And you don’t want to buy new ones but you also don’t know how to sew!

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Yep. That happened. Remember my lovely curtains from World Market in our guest bedroom?

Well, they had some funny creases (you can kind of tell from how they’re draping in the picture above) and ironing just wasn’t gonna happen, so I washed them. But they shrank! (I regretted it majorly at the time, but who really wants curtains they can never wash? Ick.) But my mom came to the rescue by suggesting adding a band of a different fabric at the bottom, and of course by executing the task herself. I know, I know…I should learn how to sew. But really it’s my mom’s fault for never teaching me, right?

We found this gold/yellow broadcloth at Walmart and bought 2 yards of it for about $5. Much cheaper than new curtains! We started by laying out the fabric on the curtain and cutting off the extra on the sides, leaving just an extra inch or two for seams.

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I wanted the panel at the bottom to be doubled (since the broadcloth is pretty thin) so then we cut the fabric in half, and then folded each piece in half again and ironed it to make a crisp crease. We decided to make the gold band as wide and substantial as possible and didn’t worry about the height of the curtain rod. Then we figured we’d just move the curtain rod to fit the new height of the curtains. The taller the better!

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Like my makeshift ironing board? I’m cheap, what can I say.

On the curtains themselves, we tore out the seam at the bottom and up a few inches on the side seam so my mom could actually sew the gold fabric into the side, not just over it.

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After we ripped out the seam, we decided to cut off a bit of the bottom because the previous holes were kind of noticeable. See that line of holes in front of the scissors?

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She used scraps of each fabric to adjust the tension on her sewing machine…

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Then we lined up the fabric, pinned it, and started sewing! Truthfully, at this point I was still ironing the other piece and my mom was doing the hard stuff. Mostly I just ironed. I also may or may not have organized the pins in the pin cushion by color…why, you ask? No reason.

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Since I don’t sew, I don’t really know how to explain the steps or how she folded the seams. I know somehow she incorporated the sides of the new piece and the side seam of the curtain together, and she sewed it such that all the rough edges were completely enclosed in the middle, even on the back!

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Then she sewed all the way around the curtain, including along the bottom (where the fabric was folded in half) for a consistent look and to make sure it would stay “folded” and creased. After they were sewn, I ironed them again to smooth out any wrinkles and ensure the bottom was nicely creased, and then I hung them back up…and of course they were way too long!

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So we raised the curtain rod a few inches, filled the holes and touched up the spots.

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And now we have beautiful, tall, and customized curtains!

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Look how great the stitching looks! My mom is UH-MAZING!

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I really love the border at the bottom. The curtains look more expensive, luxurious, and “custom.” I know the gold is close to our floor color, but it doesn’t “blend in” as much as I thought it might. I think the panels add a lot of dimension and really ground the curtains. Plus now the curtain rod can be higher! (When we bought these from World Market, they only had 84″ panels left.) Here’s before they shrank…

And after!

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A HUGE thanks to my mom for all her help in transforming my stupid, short curtains into these beauties!

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