DIY: How to Make Simple Lined Window Drapery Panels

For the past few months, I’ve been thinking about doing some updates to my bedroom.  There’s nothing “wrong” with it, but some of the elements – window treatments, pillows, pictures – have been around for a while and you know me, I always need something to change or update!

First thing on the list?  Window Treatments.

The ‘before’ window panels were from our previous home and the length has always been an issue since I repurposed them in this space.  They are beautifully lined panels from Pottery Barn (with matching pillow covers), but I was just ready for a change!

This is how they looked before~

Well actually the window treatments were the second on the list, first came the fabrics.

After having a concept in my head, I was on the search for new fabrics.  I was stuck on the color of dusty-gray-blue.  Because my interiors are mostly on the warm side, I wanted to bring in some cooler tones.   I combed the net, searched in fabric stores, and found nothing that appealed to me.  Then I made a random trip to Joanne Fabrics one day, and found this fabric which was very inspiring, but totally not the dusty-blue that I had desired.

O well, I loved it and a few fabrics later, I was out the door and ready to start my transformation.

Before I begin the step-by-step tutorial,  I wanted to mention that I decided to line the window treatments, but it isn’t a must for drapery panels.  Even though they were not going to be functional, meaning I wasn’t planning on moving them each day/night to block the light, I still wanted them to have a more substantial feel and heavier weight.  I decided to use drop cloth material because it was the least expensive and I knew from my other projects that drop cloth would really give the panels more substance and hang better.

Making Lined Drapery Panels

1. I started off by measuring the height from the floor to my existing drapery rod.  Once the height was determined, I added about 12″ of additional fabric which gave me some “play” for alterations in later steps.  I layed out the fabric and using my cutting board, clear ruler, and fabric cutter, to measure the length of fabric needed for three panels.

FYI: At this point, measuring does not need to be perfect, because it will be altered later.  That’s the beauty of these panels!

The measurement from my floor to the drapery rod was: 78″, but to allow for enough fabric I made each panel 90″

2. Once the main fabric is cut, lay the right side of your main fabric onto the right side of the lining fabric (in my case, I used drop cloth material because it was the least expensive.  For $16, I got one piece of drop cloth that was 9′ x 12′).

Before cutting, make sure ALL YOUR FABRICS ARE IRONED!  Once ironed, use your main fabric as a template and cut the lining fabric to the same size.

3. Once both fabrics are IRONED and CUT, pin around the edge of the entire panel.

4. Similar to making a pillow, sew around the 4 sides, except leave a 6-8″ opening at one of the shorter ends, so you can pull the right sided fabric through.

After sewing around, pull the fabric through to the right side.

5.  Once pulled through to the right side,  iron all the edges and seams so the panel is nice and crisp! Now that the main part of the lined drapery panel is complete, they are ready to be hung and altered.  There are numerous ways to hang window panels, but I decided to use a basic rod and hang the panels using clip rings.

6. To determine the height for the window panel, measure from the floor to the top of the clip (not to the top of the ring).  Take the unfinished side of your panel and clip the rings to it.  Then adjust the height of the panel up or down, so the panel either just hits / skims the floor OR leaves a slight puddle on the floor (I decided to have them just hit the floor).

The one side of the panel is still unfinished (that’s okay), and here’s how it will look from the back.

Now let’s finish this up…

7. It’s time to trim and finish the top.  Measure down about 4-5″ from the crease where the rings are clipped to.  Trim the rest.

8. (a) With the rings left on, remove the panel from your rod and head back to the ironing board. (b) First, iron in between the rings to get a crisp line.  Then remove the rings and iron the entire crease.  (c) Open the crease and fold over the top edge twice creating a finished edge. (d) Close the crease, iron and pin edge so it can be sewn.

8. Then sew along the bottom edge of the “flap”.

Reinstall the drapery rings and the lined window panels are complete and ready to hang.

The wall of windows and the entire view of the three lined window panels…

One more time…here is the before and after~

And if you didn’t notice, I got rid of the sheers and replaced them with functional wood roman shades – such a better look!

I’m still in the midst of this master bedroom makeover and I’ll be sharing more soon, so stay tuned!

I link my projects to some of these parties: Skip to My Lou, Dittle Dattle, Between Naps on the Porch, Today’s Creative Blog, Stories of A to Z, All Things Heart & Home, Savvy Southern Style, House of Hepworths, Finding Fabulous, Creation Corner, The Shabby Nest, Tatertots and Jello, Funky Junk, Under the Table & Dreaming

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  1. says

    This is such a wonderful tutorial! I love the fabric you chose. You are right about the wood shades…they look so clean and stylish. I’m in the process of replacing all the blinds in our bedroom with them. Thanks again. Love your blog.

    • Jenna says

      Thanks Susan for the kind comment and I’m glad to hear you thought the tutorial was understandable and comprehensive – I always worry about that, but they really are easy to make! Jenna

  2. says

    nice idea! i love changing the look of my room too, actually the whole house and this post gave me a new idea. Actually this is a good idea for our house which have a lot of wide glassed windows too… i love sawing too so i can do this curtain soon… thanks!!!

    • Jenna says

      Thanks Christy! I purchased the wood roman shades from Lowe’s actually. They were the Levelor style where I was able to have them cut to the needed size (otherwise they would have been alot more costly)! They have alot to choose from, so I highly recommend Lowe’s!

      • Christy says

        Thanks for the info! I’ll definitely be checking out Lowes! I’m in desperate need of some shades on my living room windows and those are just what I’m looking for! :)

        • Jenna says

          Great! They have a huge selection, so I’m sure you’ll find exactly what you need (and they’re reasonably priced)! Jenna

  3. says

    I love these curtains!! Such a great tutorial too (especially for me who is definitely not on a first name basis with my sewing machine). Very easy to understand your instructions. I have 3 very large windows in my family room that I’m itching to put curtains around. Hmmm. Maybe a trip to the fabric store is in order. Thanks! :)

  4. Maria says

    Hi Jenna, love this tutorial, I always wanted to make my own window panels and now I see how super simple it really is. I never thought to use a drop cloth as the liner, this is one tutorial that I will definitely add to my favorites.

    • Jenna says

      That is wonderful to hear Maria. Sometimes with writing tutorials, it gets tricky to convey each step through words. Once you make some panels of your own, please send me a picture or upload it to the SAS Interiors Facebook page! Jenna

    • Jenna says

      Yes, drop cloth is my go-to-fabric! I have made SO MANY projects with it. It looks and feels like linen, but is a fraction of the cost. Thanks for the kind comments – can’t wait to see what you create! xo Jenna

  5. says

    Wonderful tutorial, thanks so much for pointing me to it.

    I’m pinning it so I can refer back once I’ve picked out fabric and am ready to go.

    Thanks again.


    • Jenna says

      Thanks so much Heidi. These lined window treatments were really easy to make and they look and feel like something you’d pay big bucks for! Thanks for the kind comment. xo Jenna

    • Jenna says

      Thanks so much Colleen. I really found these lined window treatments easy to make and it’s something that doesn’t need to be exact because you can make changes during the alterations in the later steps. Thanks again for the kind comment! xo Jenna

    • Jenna says

      Thanks so much Stephanie! That’s so sweet of you to feature my project, I’ll head over now and take a look. xo Jenna

  6. says

    Yur so smart! I bought actual lining fabric for my dining room drapes and tried to make them like you did…pillow style, but the stinkin’ lining fabric was WAY off grain and it totally twisted and was awful! I had to take them apart, straighten the grain, which left me with not even enough fabric so I had to lengthen it with a contrasting piece…And that was expensive lining fabric from a nice store…could’ve screamed..did scream! Next time, I’ll try the dropcloth…

  7. Suzanne Daly says

    I loved your tutorial. I was wondering, do you wash your fabric and drop cloth before sewing? I was also wondering if you could tell me where you bought your drop cloth and what brand it is. That would be really great, as I have never thought to use a drop cloth before! What a great idea! The curtains are beautiful! I saw this on Tip Junkie!

  8. Nadia Daniel says

    Jenna, forgive what may very well be an ignorant question. Can you use existing drapes and sew fabric over them, using them as the liner?

    • Jenna says

      Absolutely Nadia. You can use any material you’d like for the lining. I chose drop cloth because it has good weight, it’s inexpensive, and it’s neutral, but really any material will do!

  9. Hadassah says

    Jenna, the panels were cleverly made. I love the shortcuts you used. I noticed in the photo there are 3 roman blinds? I have a large window (72″l x 54″w) and wondered if I could purchase multiple roman blinds instead of one large blind? I fear the price for that size of a window would be out of my budget.

    • Jenna says

      Thank you for the kind comment! I purchased my roman shades from Lowe’s and had them cut to size, but I’m sure you could look into one large blind or multiple blinds to fit your window. They have a huge selection of sizes and styles.

  10. DeShannon Haynes says

    Love your tip for getting the perfect hem on curtain panels! Thank you you have saved my sanity!!! :)

  11. says

    Okay — i’ve been reading tutorial after tutorial on making lined drapes, but this one I think I can follow! Now all I need is a sewing machine and the guts to use it. :/ thanks for the great tips…and your drapes look amazing!

    • Jenna says

      So glad you found this tutorial Cassie! Honestly, it’s like making a big pillow and easy to make. I can’t wait to see how yours turn out. xo Jenna

  12. enne says

    Hi, I am wondering if you can help me. Can you please recommend what type of fabric I should use to make simple white curtains for my daughter’s room? I bought some trim from etsy and just want some pretty white curtains but everything online is too expensive. I am thinking about making them myself. I am certainly not a seamstress but I am determined enough to finish her room and will make them if I have to!
    I’m looking for white fabric, (not expensive) should not be too sheer, a little is ok. I want them to remain white over time and be able to wash in the laundry. Any ideas you can offer?
    thank you

    • Jenna says

      For simple white drapes, you can either buy an inexpensive pair (Ikea has some) and jazz them up or look at the muslin sections of fabric stores (or even Walmart). Inexpensive white fabric shouldn’t be too difficult to find. Good Luck making your curtains!


  13. Roxana says

    I want to make lined curtains for my granddaughter but they won’t be panels. They’ll be slid through a rod. What changes would I need to make in your directions? I’m a quilter not a seamstress. I’ve read a lot of patterns and tutorials on making these and yours makes so much sense.

    Also, is the drop cloth material room-darkening?

    Thanks so much!

    • Jenna says

      Hi Roxanne,

      If you want to make rod pocket curtains, I would follow the same steps, but instead of clipping them at the top, create a pocket so it’s deep enough that the rod can slide through. Once you put the rod through pocket, you can then determine how much needs to be hemmed at the bottom. As for the drop cloth material, it’s very thick and can be used as a rooom darkening material.

      Good Luck!

  14. Cindy Thomas says

    Hi Jenna,

    I loved your tutorial.

    I want to make the same type of panels however, I want to add a 3″ band of co-ordinating fabric that will bring my cornice I just made into the drapes. The band will be 3 sided (sides and bottom) and I want to miter the corners. I was planning on sandwiching this band in between the face fabric and lining. How do I get that miter measured and sewn?

  15. Julie says

    Can you tell me where you got the panel fabric and what it’s called? I love the pattern! It almost looks like a Morrocan Quatrefoil Lattice print.

    • Jenna says

      Yikes, it was years ago that I purchased the fabric. I got it at Joanne Fabric, sorry that I don’t have more info to share…