You may have seen it before or you may have heard home designers refer to it as the “highwaters of drapery”–curtains that are too short. Curtains should fall to the floor, otherwise, it makes the room feel smaller, the ceiling seem lower, and the decor may look just a bit off. But what if your curtains are too short? Is there a way to make them longer? We’ve searched the web to bring you the answer.
The “high waters of drapery,” as interior decorators have been known to call curtains that are overly short, is a common sight. The space will feel smaller, the ceiling will seem lower, and the decor will look a little wrong if the curtains don’t reach the floor. However, what if your curtains are too short? Is there a method to lengthen them? We did some digging around online and found the solution for you.
- The “high waters of drapery,” as interior decorators call it, is a common problem with windows that have drapes that are excessively short. Curtains should drape all the way to the floor; otherwise, the space will look and feel smaller, the ceiling will look lower, and the dcor may look a little wrong. What, though, if your drapes are too brief? Can I somehow lengthen them? We did some digging around online, and we think we have found the solution for you.
- You’ve probably encountered the “high waters of drapery,” as interior decorators call curtains that are overly short. Curtains should drape all the way to the ground; otherwise, the room will look smaller and the ceiling will look lower than it actually is. However, what if your drapes are too short? Is there any way to lengthen them? The solution can be found all over the internet, and we’ve done the legwork for you.
- A fabric adhesive should be used.
We guarantee you will be impressed with your own do-it-yourself talents to lengthen your curains because we’ve provided simple, step-by-step instructions for each option below. Read on to discover what you’ll need, how you can get it, and why the length of your curtains actually does matter.
3 Ways To Make Curtains Longer
Curtain Rod Rings
To use this method of extending curtains, all you need is a set of curtain rings. Each curtain ring comes with a little clip that you can use to secure it to the top of your curtains. Then, all you need to do is slide the curtain rod through these rings and you have instantly added a few inches to your curtains.
Lower The Curtain Hem
The only thing you’ll need except a package of curtain rings to use this method of extending your curtains. A curtain ring is a little clip that you place to the top of your curtains. The curtain rod can be slid through the rings, and the curtains will be extended by a few inches.
This is a no-sew method, but you need need a seam ripper, which is a cheap and widely available sewing tool.
For more information on this seam ripper, please visit Amazon.com by clicking here.
To implement this technique, just follow these guidelines.
To remove a thread stitch, just slide the pointed top of a seam ripper beneath the thread and pull.
Keep going like this, cutting out groups of stitches rather than individual ones. Pull it out till it’s no longer folded and attached to the curtain when you’ve reached the end. The stray threads should be plucked out and thrown away.
Use your iron and a spray bottle of water to remove the crease from the area where the hem used to be. Repeat the ironing process until the wrinkle is gone.
Use An Adhesive To Add Fabric
Despite the fact that you’ll be stitching a new piece of fabric onto the back of each curtain panel, this project requires no sewing at all! You’ll be using a fusible web-like ribbon that, when ironed, permanently ties two pieces of cloth together.
What you’ll need in the way of supplies:
- Close your drapes
- Your preferred fabric, trimmed to the length you’re adding to your curtains, with seam allowances of at least 1/2 inch on all sides and bottom (to create the side and bottom hems)
- Wet cloth for wiping
Ribbon with a fuse, like Stich Witchery’s fusible ribbon,
For Stitch Witchery on Amazon, please click here.
Read over these project-specific suggestions before you dive in:
- Some do-it-yourselfers recommend purchasing an additional panel of draperies and utilizing it as the lengthening piece by cutting it to size.
- Look for a fabric that matches or compliments the color and pattern of your drapes. It can be a solid color, a print, or a floral pattern that complements the draperies you already have.
- Have a look at what your local fabric store or the internet has to offer in terms of ribbon, trim, and lace. Including even one of these details will give your curtains a special look that no one else will have.
To complete the Stitch Witchery technique, please follow these 7 steps:
Your new curtain fabric will be a rectangular piece with unfinished sides. Fold the raw edges of the top, bottom, and sides over by 1/2 inch and press with an iron to secure. Until you reach Step 5, the top of your cloth will have a raw edge.
For each of your three folded edges, cut a Stich Witchery strip to the exact length.
Slip the strip of Stich Witchery under the folded edge, again working from one side at a time, and making sure the web-like ribbon is entirely hidden beneath the uppermost fold of the cloth.
Stitch Witchery should be used in accordance with the instructions provided by the manufacturer. Putting the product to use is as easy as pressing a steaming iron over the folded edges after covering them with a damp cloth for a few seconds. The iron should be pressed down, held in place, then lifted up, rather than slid back and forth. Go around all three edges again.
The new piece of fabric’s breadth must now correspond exactly with the hem of the old curtain. Place the fabric right-side-up on top of the curtain panel, with the raw edges aligned (the bottom of the curtain panel should be flush with the bottom of the fabric).
Following the same procedure as before, cut a length of Stich Witchery that is the same width as the panel and place it between the raw edge of the fabric and the bottom of the curtain. Use an iron to apply pressure, as indicated above.
The final step is to lay out the entire curtain panel, unfolding the extra fabric. If you’re replacing a torn or otherwise damaged curtain with fresh fabric, iron over the seam. The lengthened curtains are now ready to be hung.
A common question is “how long should my curtains be?” This is a valid concern; curtains have many other purposes besides simply hiding a window. Curtains of the right length may transform a room’s ambiance by making it seem larger and cozier while also adding a unique textural element.
However, the desired mood and aesthetic could not come across if the curtain hems are merely an inch or two above the floor. Curtain hems, as a general rule, should rest lightly on the floor.
Is it okay if curtains don’t touch the floor?
Curtains should not be hung lower than half an inch from the floor, according to several interior designers. Any shorter than that, and the drapey flow that curtains give is disrupted. The seemingly inconsequential gap between the curtain’s bottom edge and the floor throws off the room’s overall proportions.
How long is too long for curtains?
Is it possible to have too-long curtains if they should be no more than a half-inch from the floor, ideally resting on it? Just consider the classic appearance achieved by having drapes that are long enough to pool or spill over onto the floor. It’s common to see this design employed in more formal contexts, when it lends an air of luxurious beauty.
But if there’s a lot of fabric on the floor, it will detract from the overall effect. Curtains can be up to 2 1/2 inches longer from the point where they contact the floor to prevent the pooling effect. More than that will look ridiculous outside the window and can even be too much for the whole room.
Can you use long curtains on short windows?
Curtains with a longer length are so adaptable that even interior designers agree they can be used on shorter windows. Doing so is a terrific approach to highlight your window and draw attention to it. However, context and scale must be considered. Too many drapes can make a space look uncomfortable, especially if the window itself is on the smaller and shorter side.
Also, if your short windows are in a high-traffic area like the kitchen, you may want to rethink hanging long curtains there. Also, sweep up the mess on the ground.
The last thing to keep in mind when hanging lengthy curtains over any type of window is that they shouldn’t cover or touch any radiators or heating devices, as this could be a fire hazard.
How far should a curtain rod extend past the window?
This is a very valid concern, as the position of the rod has a substantial impact on how the curtains will ultimately look and function. We noticed that there is a substantial variation in the ideal length of a curtain rod, with most designers agreeing that 3–10 inches is the sweet spot between the window trim and the end of the rod.
As such, the best way to settle on an extension distance within this range is to experiment with different positions and pick the one that feels and looks correct. If your window is only 3 inches wide, your curtain rod shouldn’t protrude more than 1 inch from the wall, and vice versa if your window is 10 inches wide.
Are curtains outdated?
Curtains have served dual purposes as a practical and aesthetic household accessory for centuries. You can state with confidence that curtains are not going out of style. The introduction of stylish blinds and a variety of shades into the home decor industry has not diminished the need for elegant curtaining.
Certain fabric blends (like 100% polyester) or fabric print designs (we can all spot a design from the 1970s!) may become antiquated. It’s also true that drapes that are hanging at an odd length can make a room look antiquated.
Selecting curtains for your windows is easier if you make sure they reach the floor. Keep in mind that there are simple options right here if you find that the curtains you bought or the drapes that came with the acquisition of your property are too short.