DIY No Sew Cafe Curtains
Hey Everyone! I hope y’all are having a great weekend so far.
I wanted to share with you another super easy update for your kitchen window or any window. I love natural light, as most do, and I had these big, bulky white blinds on the window over my kitchen sink (and every other window in the house).
Don’t get me wrong having blinds are great and I am glad they aren’t the tiny tiny blinds but they are SO hard to keep clean and some of them are in bad shape. I have been wanting to change the blinds on this window for awhile and I finally decided on removing them and putting up cafe curtains.
Cafe curtains are short curtains that cover half of a window such as a kitchen window above a sink. Don’t feel bad if you didn’t know what they were, I didn’t know until about a week or two ago either :)
Of course you know I am on a very limited budget and prefer to DIY everything if possible! For the fabric I was leaning towards using a shower curtain but then I found this Target Threshold window curtain panel and really loved the pattern of the fabric. It was hard to coordinate the right color becauseI have large curtains hanging in the joining dining room so I had to keep that in mind picking the fabric but I think this goes pretty well.
Here are the tools I need:
1. Curtain panel or shower curtain
2. Small tension rod
3. Drapery clips
4. Tape measure
7. Calculator (optional, I just can’t compute things in my head!)
First I measured the width of my window and then the height that I wanted the curtains. Once I did this I measured my fabric and realized that I could cut a large strip all the way across the bottom of the panel and then cut that in half and I would have exactly the right amount for two curtains. Remember to allow room for the hemming strips to your measurements.
Once the fabric was cut, I used hemming strips that just have to be ironed onto the fabric. I can’t remember what these little strips are called exactly but I had some left over some IKEA curtains that I already had and I followed their instructions.
I measured the strips and then folded the un-hemmed side of the fabric onto the unfinished side just as if you were going to hem it and I ironed it a little so that there would be a crisp fold. Then I slid the strips into the crease in the a fabric and ironed the new hem. The little strips really work like glue on the fabric.
Finally, I hung the curtains with drapery clips, strung them on the tension rod and they were done. Also, the tension rod that I bought was white, if you noticed in the picture above, because I wasn’t sure what I wanted at the time but I decided I wanted it to be dark so I just sprayed it with old faithful…Rustoleum’s Oil Rubbed Bronze! This is the same paint I used to spray the door hardware.
So all in all, the curtain was $24.99, the clips were $4.99 per pack and I needed 2 packs, and the tension rod I think was about $2.99. So for a total of approximately $37.96 I have new curtains. I had hoped to spend a little less on the curtains, $19.99 or less, but like I said I had to be picky about the fabric to coordinate with everything and this was the best option. Everything came from Target except the tension rod which we got at Walmart but they do have the rods at Target. One stop shop!
What do you think? Do you like the fabric? What you think about cafe curtains, cool or too country :)
I hope y’all have a great weekend! More cheap and easy projects coming soon including some Christmas crafting!
I am linking this project up with The Blissful Bee and several other lovely ladies for Work It Wednesday! Head on over and check out the great projects!
Summer, your curtain is beautiful! I can’t tell you how many times I have looked online for some bathroom curtains WITH RINGS. They want them sold separately and to sell them one side at a time – AND THEN ONE HAS TO GO AND BUY THE RINGS SEPARATELY !!!
I’m gonna make my own because of the way you said it. I can sew, but your tutorial inspired me :) :) :)
Becky Hunsucker / April 4, 2022
Wow Becky, thank you so much! It makes me so happy that you found inspiration in one of my projects! I really appreciate you reading!
I tried to reply to your comment from April 27th but for some reason “Reply’ would not work! Anyway just wanted to say I’m glad my feedback made your day! I have a pair of pants that lost their hem and for the first time in my life am not aggravated by it now that I’ve discovered hem tape thanks to you! Keep up the great blogs!
Hi Barbara! I’m sorry the reply button didn’t work but thank you again for your kind words! Have a great week!
I’ve never done a diy like this… i am not a sewer, not a hemmer but this was so easy I was amazed!! The instructions were perfect! I needed a small curtin for a small bathroom window- this was super easy and took no time at all! The hem adhesive was a breeze to work with! Thank you, Summer!
Wow Barbara, this totally made my day and is exactly why I love writing my blog. I’m so glad you found it helpful! Thanks for reading :)
Love your kitchen window! What did you use to hang the wreath on the window?
Thanks so much Kristin! I actually used a ribbon and hung it with a small nail and a touch of hot glue :)
Hello can you tell me where you got the light hanging above your kitchen sink?
Hi Heidi! It’s a Creative Co-op fixture but here is a similar one https://rstyle.me/n/c7ex9ibbkif
I love these? Do you know what the name of this specific material is called so I can see if it’s floating around out there where someone is willing to sell it? I’m sure you most likely don’t know because it was a long time ago and if it did say on the care tag you may of cut that part off. Does this question even make sense? If anyone reads this and you have this material and want to get rid of it please let me know. Thank you!
Hi Tawny, the material was actually a fabric shower curtain from Target!
I was wondering where you got your wreath above the window? I’m having trouble finding an affordable one. If you made it even better can you share please.
Hi Ann! I’ve had that wreath for years and I honestly can’t remember where it came from. My mom and I had it in two different colors. I’ll take a look online and if I find anything I’ll let you know! Thanks for reading!
I love this! What did you use to hang the ribbon wreath?
I actually have these curtains and removed them from my family room, i didn’t know what to do with them and now…i have a purpose for them! Thanks!!!
Ps…i LOVE target!!!
Yay!!! I’m so glad Liliana! Target has my heart too for sure!
Wow! I am so happy I read this. I just bought a house without anything over the kitchen window and was going to struggle putting up blinds and curtains. This will be so much easier.
Thanks so much,
I’m so glad to hear that Sarah! These really are super easy and it’s fun to find pretty fabric! Try Online Fabric Store for some great affordable fabrics!
I love this idea and the fabric. Sadly, after searching the Target website, I didn’t find drape panels like yours since it has been a few years since you posted this.
Thanks so much Wendy! That’s a bummer! Any scrap fabric or shower curtain with a pattern you like can work!
Thanks for the post! I loved it and I will definitely be using your advice thi weekend to make my own. The only thing I can’t find (on Amazon) is a thin rod like yours. I don’t want a thick shower curtain rod on hanging in the kitchen… Where did you get yours????
Thanks so much Ashley!!! I found the small rods at Walmart :) Hope that helps!
Love the curtains. I have two questions? Hope much width did you give the curtain in relation to the width of the curtain? Also, are you using a sheer or a shade behind it? Would you ever use a balance above cafe curtains? (Sorry, 3 questions!l).
Jan [email protected]
How do these café curtains wash up? Do they fray?
Hi Kathy! I’ve never had to wash them but I’ve washed others where I’ve used the fabric glue strips and they hold up pretty well!
Wonderful idea it really looks great! Where can I purchase the clips that you placed on the tension rods?
Thanks so much!! I found them at Walmart :)
this might be a dumn question hahah but what department in walmart were you able to find these clips?
I can’t quite remember but it might have been with the fabric/sewing stuff.
I know it’s been awhile since this post, but for anyone still wondering, the packages of clips at Walmart are with the curtain rods, including the tension rod used here! Very cute project. Will definitely be making curtains like this soon!
Thank you so much for reading and responding Deb! I’m glad you enjoyed the project!
I have used cut down table cloths and table runners to make cafe curtains. Take advantage of tablecloths that are available in several sizes. Select one (or two) for the window(s) that best suit your needs. Matching runners make a great valance. I used Scotchguard spray and it repels the moisture by the sink quite well.
Great ideas! Thanks Sue!
Well done & love the fabric. Glad to see
You didn’t skimp on the hem depths. That always makes a Project look cheap & screams homemade. I am also a fan of spray
Painting regular, inexpensive rods to match my decor/project!
Thanks Kathy! I’m so glad you like it!
Thanks so much for the tutorial and especially the inspiration. Your cafe curtains turned out great! We just did a major downsize into a condo and I am looking for ways to cozy it up and your idea fits the bill perfectly. Thanks for sharing your idea. ~Bonnie~
You are very welcome Bonnie! I’m so glad you like it! Good luck with your condo decorating!
Wow! Super great idea! It is easy to find curtains on clearance too if you don’t have too many color restrictions. And, Courtney, kitchen towels is brilliant! Even less hem tape!
Thanks so much Deborah!
I like it! Does the glue hold up to the heat from the sun?
Hi Carol! Nope, never had a problem with the glue at all, they are still in perfect condition!
How far apart did you clip the hooks on the curtain
Hi Sandra! I clipped mine about 3 1/2″ apart :)
I love this idea and plan to try it this weekend. Do you have a tutorial on how to make the wreath.
Thanks so much Janei! Let me know how it goes! I actually bought that wreath but it’s made out of feathers so I’m sure there is a similar DIY! Check out pinterest :)
Ooh!! Love the idea of using a curtain panel as it’s easier for me to find a pattern I like that way :) I’ve been having such a hard time finding cafe curtains I like so this is perfect! I’ll be trying this out for our half bath and our kitchen. Thanks!
Yay, so glad you like it Shawna! It’s super easy and I’d love for you to let me know how yours turn out!
This is such a cute idea. I love spray paint and it really changed the look of your clips and rod. I just found a yellow and white dot single panel curtain at Big Lots, on clearance for $5 or such since it didn’t have partner panel.. So I put in my grey and yellow bathroom window and pulled back one side to hang on a doorknob wall treatment.Even though it was 84 inches it pulled up just right as it swagged.
Yay! Thanks so much Linda! That’s awesome!!! I love dots of any kind :)
Just stumbled upon your blog and can I just say, I LOVE your style!! Beautiful home. These cafe curtains are perfect! I have been thinking about doing this in my kitchen just to bring in a little more color and texture. The blinds are always pulled up completely out of view. But, there is no horizontal window piece and I’m afraid it might look odd with a tension rod going across the middle of the window. Decisions, decisions… ;)
Thanks so much Sarah! I got tired of my blinds and had to do something! Glad you like it!!
I LOVE this. Our kitchen window has been a dilemma since day 1 and I have been trying (for over a year) to find a cafe curtain I liked (Most are a little “matronly” and I can’t sew, though I would like to learn). This is the perfect solution. I now have weekend plans with my window and iron :). Thanks!
So happy you are here Sarah! I am getting ready to do my second set of “no sew” cafe curtains for my office! Please email me a pic of yours when your done!!
I love that fabric! I, too, have cafe curtains in my kitchen and love them! My old blinds got SO dirty being splashed from the sink and whatnot. I used kitchen towels and they worked wonderfully!
Thank so much Courtney! Agreed, my blinds were so dirty and this was such and easy fix. Thanks for stopping by!!
I love these! One day, when we buy a house again, I am hiring you!
Thanks Liz! They were super easy!!!