Have you ever spent hours in a JoAnn Fabrics searching for the perfect print for your project? I have.

Have you ever triumphantly lifted that holy grail of fabrics over your head, marched to the cutting counter, requested three yards, and feel your heart sink as the lovely lady says, “Sorry there is only a little over two”? I have.

Have you ever bought it anyway, desperately hoping to make it work out? I have.

photo 1That is how these special curtains started. It was stupidly hard to find a fabric that would match our obscure theme (which I will reveal soon, I promise). I pulled out several bolts and brought them to my husband for inspection. Finally, we found one that would do the trick. It is a cream fabric with blue accents. Cream and brown are pretty much my base for this neutral room and I liked the pattern. Only to be told that there wasn’t enough and none of the other stores in the area had it. URGH! Well, of course, I bought it anyway, hoping that I could figure out some way to make it work. I also bought 3 yards of unbleached muslin to back it with since cotton by itself is generally too thin to block out much light on a sunny window.

I took the fabric home and laid it out in the baby’s room. I measured the window twice. I measured the fabric. TWICE. There was no way it was long enough to create a rod pocket. Especially after pinning for edges (I made the edge as small as possible).

I grabbed a shower ring out of the bathroom. Nope. Not long enough to have rings at the top either. I started folding the fabric thinking I would put a border of muslin at the top and bottom, but to be honest, it just looked stupid. I thought maybe a ribbon border would look better, but it didn’t either. Then I wondered if I could just use ribbon as the curtain loops. I had seen ribbons used to “fancy up” rings before so why not? Sew it on instead of tying it and it should be strong enough to hold them up. Since I was out of other ideas, I just went with it, assuming it would work.

So, I sewed. Hoping that it would all work out. Otherwise I would have goofy curtains. As much as it is a baby’s room I still want them to look nice.photo 1 (2)

The final stitches in place, it looked pretty darn good. I took measurements of how much ribbon I would need and laid it out on a ruler. Marking off even distances I laid out the loops and pinned them. I laid the second curtain on top of the first to be sure they were in the exact same place. For some reason, one curtain was half an inch wider (hey, nobody is perfect).

I went back to the sewing machine and used a double X stitch to make sure those ribbons wouldn’t move a bit once they were sewn on. photo 4It was my first experiment with fancy stitches on my machine (which has 60). They turned out really secure and didn’t look messy.

The miracle was that they turned out looking just dandy. I ironed them and proudly carried them up to the room, hoping desperately that they would:

  1.  Fit the window from top to bottom
  2.  Slide with ease on the rod
  3.  Block out a decent amount of light that the baby can have nap time in peace.

The answers were: YES, YES, and (checked the next morning) YES!

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