Grommet curtains

I love the look of grommet curtains. The grommets are surprisingly easy to apply, too. I have a mini tutorial below on that. 

As for making the curtain themselves, I found an awesome blog post with a great explanation. These curtains are for my son’s nursery. With daylight saving time, his room always seems to be very bright, even with the blinds closed. I wanted something that darkened the room, so I went with the brown fabric.


(Click fabrics for direct links for purchase at Warehouse Fabrics Inc.)

Topeka Chocolate - TOACHE

Blackout drapery lining

Drapery header

I used four yards of the fabric. Each panel used two yards for the front and two yards for the lining. If I were smart, I would have thought to obtain drapery lining in the first place. But I’m not, so I just used fabric for the lining. We carry a variety of drapery linings, including a blackout lining. Click the link above. 

Drapery header is sort of like heavy interfacing on a narrow roll. It’s a nice reinforcement for the grommets without adding too much bulk.

The grommets I used are plastic and snap together with such ease that I was shocked. I thought they would cause me at least a little grief!

The pattern

While hunting for tips on making grommet curtains, I came across this tutorial at Orange Sugar. I liked how she put the lining in. Everything seemed really professional, though I have nothing to compare it with. I decided to follow her instructions in making my curtains.

The process

This is a before picture of the window. I made that valance a while back and have a tutorial here

You can also see a post of the entire nursery, in which I used adorable Warehouse Fabrics Inc. fabrics with dinosaurs, dots, stripes and swirls.

Um. How hard is it to get a photograph somewhat straight? For Pete’s sake. 

I’ve removed the valance and put up the curtain rod. The blog post I referred to suggested four inches out on either side and four inches above the window top. I have set mine in narrower because I really wanted to be able to keep the valance up, too. In the end, the curtain rod should really be out more, and I don’t think I’ll be able to use them both.

I started with four yards. I took one two-yard piece and then cut it in half lengthwise along the fold. This will serve as one curtain panel and its lining. I do recommend using a proper curtain lining, though, instead. Do the same with your other piece. 

From here, follow the excellent instructions at Orange Sugar. She gives really good measuring explanations.

Once you’ve completed your curtain panels, it’s time for the grommets. Make sure you use an even number so your curtains hang properly. Lay them out, trying to evenly space them. 

My side grommets are 1″ from the edge and then from centers of each circle to the next they are 4-1/4″ apart and 1-1/4″ from the top. My curtain panels were 26″ wide finished. After eyeballing, I used a ruler to finalize placement and then drew a dot in the center of each grommet.

The grommets come with a template for cutting out the hole. Place the center dot on the dot you marked and trace around the cutouts for the circle.
You’ll get this.
Repeat for all.
Now cut out the circle. Yes, it’s really scary cutting a hole in your finished item. If you want to know just how scary, keep reading.
Take your non-spiked grommet piece and insert from the right side of the fabric.
Like this …
Take your spiked grommet piece and put it in from the wrong side of the fabric.
Snap the two sides together. This took no effort at all. I anticipated having to battle to lock them together.
That’s it! Now repeat for the rest of them.
Until you have this.
For the next curtain panel, I just laid this one on top and used it as the guide. 

But, maybe you’d want to be sure you were doing so on the TOP of the curtain panel and not on the bottom for lack of paying attention.

That’s right. I actually CUT OUT ONE OF MY GROMMET CIRCLES on the hem of my second panel. And then I stood there gasping for breath. I had spent all of this time … DID I SERIOUSLY JUST DO THAT?! 

So, I could tell you that the decorative fabric strip at the bottom was just for fun, but I’m human. I admit it. It’s totally embarrassing, but I admit it.

Here are my curtains. They are nice and dark and block the light well.
And open. I still hope I can figure something out with the valance. Or maybe I’ll expand my curtain rod a little — it’s adjustable. But for now, the curtains are in place and doing their job.