So, I finally cut into the fabric that’s been in my stash the longest. It’s not the oldest fabric, because I’m pretty sure I have some vintage stuff, but I did buy a whole bolt of it on clearance before I had kids. I always intended to make curtains with it – long curtains that would puddle romantically on the floor. Did I mention this was before I had kids? Yeah, those of you with kids are laughing maniacally, and you know exactly why, with two boys, I instead opted to sew valances. For those of you without kids, just imagine small, dirty boys entangled in the romantic puddles of curtain on the floor. And the curtain rods being pulled off the wall, and being left with dirty white curtains and holes in the wall. And hopefully no injuries.
Yeah. So valances it is!
These went into my kitchen, where as you can see in the before pictures I had lovely gathered valances with a print that was circa 1999. Much like the original decor in my kitchen when we bought the house (think striped wallpaper and a floral vine wallpaper border). And while the wallpaper was stripped down long ago, the curtains…well, the bolt of fabric just sat on my shelf, as my dreams of long curtains died.
Scalloped valances are only slightly more complicated to make than the valances I made for our living room. I started with a bowl that I chose because I liked the curve, and a long sheet of paper. I drew two horizontal lines, spacing them apart by the depth of the curve I wanted. Then I used a washable marker to mark on the back of the bowl where it crossed the upper line. By aligning these marks with the upper line, I made sure all the scallops were the same as I traced them.
After tracing out my pattern, I added seam allowances to the scallops and sides, and then I added another 2 inches to the top to fold over for the rod pocket. I cut two pieces for each valance – outside fabric and lining. Sew the two pieces right sides together, leaving a hole to turn the fabric, then clip into the corners of the scallops.
Turn the valance right sides out and press, pressing the raw edges from the hole for turning to the inside. Fold the top over 2″ to the wrong side and stitch along the long side, leaving the short sides ope to insert the rod.
Another thing I’ve been waiting forever to do is to raise the curtain rod in the window by our table. As you can see below, raising the rod above the window so that only the bottom few inches of the valance cover the very top of the window gives the overall impression of a much larger window. It also lets in more light.
And there you go – another long overdue sewing for home project crossed off the list!