? asked in Home & GardenDo It Yourself (DIY) · 2 months ago

How much fabric do I need?

I’m trying to make my own curtains for my trailer, these are the measurements I took. 

I would like for each window to have 2 panels so I can open them up when I want. I’m trying to figure out how many yards of fabric I would need? Can someone help me please.


Also: I didn’t add any measurements for the hem allowance for the top. I’m not 100% sure the size of the rod they are going on to, but it looked to be about an inch in diameter. 

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4 Answers

  • a
    Lv 4
    2 months ago

    Two things: Many people working in chain fabric stores are not sewists, and may or may not be great at math. I expect many are told by their bosses NOT to do your calculating for you, because if it's wrong, or YOU mess up cutting, you'll leave a bad review / blame them. I have worked in fabric stores, and there was NO WAY a manager is going to look kindly on any employee doing  this much of the work and figuring for you.

    Figuring three lengths  of 45 inch fabric for item 3, and two lengths for items 4,5,6 and 7, and a single for the other three, I came up to 14 1/4 yards, and that was with a four inch pocket at the top for your 1" diameter rod and a one inch hem on each panel. Honestly, it would be cheaper to buy a bunch of matching curtains online or at the big box store and shorten them to fit.

  • 2 months ago

    the sales lady at the fabric store can help you.  amount of material depends on how you want them to hang ...

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    You need to choose your fabric as that will tell you how wide the roll it comes on is. For curtains you usually double the width of the window so it will gather, but a lot depends on the weight of the material. 

  • 2 months ago

    No one can do it, because we don't know most of what we would need to do the calculations. How wide the fabric is. How deep a top hem is needed, which depends on how the curtains are being hung. Fabric mostly comes in 3 standard widths, 36', 44", and 60' and the yardage needed could vary considerably depending which one you have or get. Or maybe you're not using new fabric in a conventional width.

    I'm not going to do all the calculating for each width, but I will try to briefly explain how you can do it. Let's say that your fabric is 36" wide, which is what most cotton/cotton blends come in. Fabric is always used so that the selvage, the finished edge it comes with, runs up and down. The width runs crossways, parallel to the floor.

    So lets look at your microwave curtain. If your fabric was 44" wide or more, you could just cut a piece long enough and it would be wide enough. But your curtain is 40" wide and your fabric is 36". That means you will have to use two pieces, each long enough, and sew them together preferably in the middle of the curtain. The length will have to be enough for a bottom hem (I'd use 6") and enough for a top hem. Only you can know what that has to be because you know what you're hanging them from, but you probably need at least 4". So for a curtain that's going to end up 48" wide and 40" long, you will need to cut two pieces of 36" fabric, each at least 50" long.

    For another example, we'll use your futon curtain. Two pieces, each one 33" wide. You'd want two lengths of the 36" wide fabric, each 22" + 6" + 4" = 32" total. The fabric is wide enough to make a small side hem which will look better.

    Those measurements are assuming that the curtains will be flat when closed. If you want them to be gathered when closed, they will have to be made wider. Depending on what fabric you're using, you make them 1 and 1/4 times the window width, or up to twice as wide. All depends on the look you want and the fabric. A stiff fabric will not gather as well so it can't be made twice as wide. A very soft fabric can take more gathering. Basic cotton quilt fabric does fine at 1 and 1/2 times as wide.

    I find it very helpful, when doing this kind of thing, to draw pictures to help me understand what lengths and widths of fabric will be needed for each curtain. The picture will show the finished size of the curtain, and the sizes of the pieces of actual fabric that are needed to get that finished size.

    The really easy way to do this is to go to a fabric store and ask them to help you figure it out. Find out first how deep your top hem has to be to hang on whatever you're hanging the curtains from. If it's a rod, wrap some fabric around the rod to see how much it really takes to go around it. Choose what fabric you want, then they can do the figuring. And buy a yard or two extra, just in case.

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