Curtains look messy when they drag on the floor, requiring frequent washing. One outstanding problem posed by long oversize curtains is that they don’t slide close and open smoothly. So the first idea that comes in mind is to cut them short. But there are methods you can use shorten your beautiful curtains so that you can restore them to their original size when you move into a new house with large windows. There are two options to pick from when shortening the curtains. The first involves use of no-sew hemming options which does not require skills and can be accomplished in a short time. Another one is a procedural hemming technique which requires some skill. A hem is a finishing technique for garments in which edges of a fabric are narrowly folded together to prevent unraveling.
No-sew hemming options requiring less skill
Shortening the top
Curtain- rod curtains tend to come with a pocket at the top through which the holding rod slides. They require hooks to function and are the easiest to install. You can apply a non permanent hem on top by straightening the top and folding it over to the back. You then proceed to form a new pocket by pinning the fold through which the rod will pass. To prevent the pin from showing on the curtains front, ensure the pin penetrates in the curtains lining only.
Shortening the bottom
You can choose to shorten the bottom of the curtain instead of the top. Fold the bottom to the length you desire then create a crisp edge by pressing it with hot iron. Use safety pins to hold the fold in place. Ensure that the pins pass through the curtain liner and excess material to keep them hidden.
On the folded section, you can sew a basting stitch to create a non-permanent hem and more decent look than pinning. To keep the folded section in place, add an extended stitch along the folding. Snip the knot off to remove the stitch then pull out the thread. Better yet, you can use the adhesive tapes, by removing it (adhesive tape) from the stitch to secure the fold. One bad side of using adhesive tapes is that tend to leave a residue on the fabric.
You can create a large window and short curtain impression just by moving the curtain rod. For instance, raise your curtain rod 6 inches if the curtains are 6 inches tall. The rod mounting hardware will however, necessitate drilling new holes. You will also be required to repaint and patch old hardware holes. This option is great for permanent solution.
Shortening by hemming with more skill
Hemming a curtain is quite sophisticated. I have however made a comprehensive guideline that can be easily without requiring an expert.
Requirements; Ironing table, iron box, meter rule or measuring tape, the curtain to be shortened, starch.
Step 1: Planning the length
Begin by measuring the size of the desired hem. This should be done while the curtain is still hanging. Measure the required drop before marking with pins the location you want the curtain to fall. Take care not to pull the curtain tightly while measuring.
Step 2: Preparing work surface
You can move your ironing board near the window to limit movement. The ironing board is to be used as your craft table. Proceed to measure the portion to be hemmed.
Step 3: Creasing
Crease along the portion you want to hem using starch and hot iron. Keep the curtain in a hanging position.
Step 4: Folding the edges
Smoothen the curtain and fold it along the marked edges to form a deep hem. Using pins hold the excess fabric.
Step 5: Ironing
Hold the top of the fold and iron the adhesive strip along it while the curtain is still hanging
Step 6: Sealing the drapes
Drape the curtains down once you have hemmed the portion you want. Look at the length to make sure it meets your requirements. Ensure the initial ironing over the hem is as brief as possible. Use the hem strip to gently seal the drapes. Readjust the fabric by pulling it apart in case it is not as per your needs.