How to Sew Roman Curtains to Protect Your Home’s Interior from the Winter Sun

During summer, you may not have to worry about the sun's rays shining directly into your home's windows. But as the December 21st winter solstice nears with the arrival of fall and winter, the sun will sit slightly lower in the sky each afternoon, allowing it to shine into any windows of your home without window treatments. Also, the more northern the latitude of your home on the earth, the lower the sun will sit in the sky at midday and the more able it will be to shine directly into your home's windows. To help protect furniture and flooring in your home from sun fading and damage during the winter, you may want to add window treatments to some of your home's windows. Here are instructions to help you sew easy-to-make, attractive Roman curtain window coverings.

Measure Your Window

Roman curtains are of a simple design that don't take a great deal of fabric to construct but will give you the privacy and protection from the sun that you need. Roman curtains provide window coverings without all the extra busy-ness and ruffles other types of curtains may have, as Roman curtains hang flat within the window frame. To make your Roman curtains hang properly and fit your windows, you will need to accurately measure the inside of your window.

First, measure the length and height of a window you want to cover with Roman curtains. Be sure to measure from one side of the window jamb to the other and from the window head to the sill. Add one inch to the width of your window measurement and add four inches to the length of your window measurement to allow for hems. Take these measurements with you to a local craft and fabric store so you can get the proper amount.

Select the Fabric and Materials

If you want your curtains to be sheer and allow some light into the room, look for a fabric that allows light to pass through the weave. You can test a fabric's sheerness at the fabric store by holding a selection of fabric up in front of you with a window behind it. If you want a curtain that will block much of the outside light, look for a heavier drapery or upholstery fabric. If you are not sure where to locate each of these fabrics, ask a store employee for assistance, and they can show you where to look in the store.

Have a store employee cut the length of fabric you need for your curtains. You will also need two curtain tension rods that are long enough to fit inside your window jamb to hold up the Roman curtains. Then, select a matching cotton sewing thread to sew your curtains.

Sew the Curtains

Lay your curtain fabric out on a large work space, such as a table or floor. With straight sewing pins and a tape measure, measure and pin a 1/2-inch hem down the length on both sides of your curtain fabric. Press the hem with an iron and remove the pins. With a 1/4-inch seam allowance, stitch each hem in place. 

Measure and pin into place a 2-inch hem on the top and bottom of your curtain panel. Press each hem and remove the pins, then stitch them in place with a 1 1/2-inch seam allowance. This hem will also create the pockets for you to slip each of the tension curtain rods into.

Hang Your New Curtains

Hang your curtains with one tension rod at the very top of your window, and the second tension rod in place at the bottom of the window. Make sure the wrong side of the fabric faces outside to give the curtains their seamless look. If you want to allow light into the room, adjust and raise the bottom tension rod.

To look into buying this sort of window treatment, look at the offerings of companies like F & R Interiors.