DIY French Door Curtains: Step-By-Step Tutorial & Best Tips

DIY french door curtains: a great tutorial in just 4 steps

If you are a happy owner of french doors or just designing their installation – you know better than anyone else how difficult it is to find beautiful and functional french door curtains. It is worth recognizing that the options for standard curtains for french doors are very limited.

Of course, you can have your curtains custom-made, but that can cost a fortune. However, do not despair – after reading our article, you will be able to make original french door curtains in size and to your taste.

Making such curtains is very simple – even an inexperienced person in sewing can handle it. This is a great chance to save money, which will not affect the quality of the product.

french door curtains

DIY french door curtains: where to start?

Why hang curtains on french doors at all? Or can you do without them? French door curtains exist primarily for your comfort.

If you need to darken your door so that the light coming through it does not interfere with your sleep, or you need the privacy that a door that is impenetrable to prying eyes, french door curtains are definitely what you need.

Curtains can be a great decorative element. This has both a practical side – to cover an unsightly or cluttered area in the house, and a design – the choice of fabric and style of curtains depends on your creative look and is ideal for your interior.

In order to sew a french door curtain yourself, you will need only 3 skills and a minimum of consumables.

If you already know how to cut the fabric evenly, perform the most basic straight seam on a sewing machine (it doesn’t even have to be perfectly even, we’ll talk about this below) and iron it – proceed to the choice of fabric.

How to choose fabric for simple french door curtains

The choice of fabric for curtain panels is perhaps the most difficult part of your project. To understand what to focus on when choosing, you need to decide on the style of the curtains.

The fact is that depending on the types of french doors, the style of the curtains, and your blackout goal, you may also need lining fabric.

You can buy fabric online – it’s your own risk; however, many prefer to feel the fabric to get a better understanding of its structure.

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Styles french door curtain panels

Let’s see what curtain options, depending on the type of door, you can easily make yourself.

Separation by shape:

Flat curtain panels

It is probably the easiest option. This type of curtain panel is a single-stitched piece of fabric located between two cornices.

A flat curtain does not provide any assemblies and folds of fabric. Solid patterns, inscriptions, and even images on the fabric will look great in this option.

Gathered curtain panels

It is also a single stitched piece of fabric suspended between the cornices. The difference is that these curtains are pleated at the header and footer.

For this curtain panel, the best choice would be a solid color fabric or a small ornate pattern.

Compaction division:

Lined curtain panels

A lined curtain is a type of curtain panel that provides lining. This version of french door curtains will look better for doors that are visible from both sides or if you need good light filtering.

Lined curtain panels will also be a great solution if you want to choose fabrics of different designs for both visible sides of the door so as not to “fall out” of the integrity of the interior.

Lined curtains are not worth your time if your goal is to cover up an old closet or pantry obsession – simpler options will do here.

Tip: if you realize that curtains with a lining are your option, choose so that both the main piece and the lining are made of light fabric. Heavy or medium-weight fabrics wrinkle, add extra bulk, and won’t fold.

Single layer french doors curtain panels

As the name implies, these are curtains sewn from a single layer of fabric. You can buy a more transparent fabric to have more light or a more opaque one to minimize the light entering the room.

Top tip: choose a fabric that will look good both front and back if it can be seen from both sides of the french door.

Decide on the amount of fabric

If you have already chosen the type of fabric, its colors, and the style of the panels, we recommend that you proceed to measurements in order to determine the size of the fabric cut.

You can also buy a ready-made set of curtains and “fit” it in this way to fit your own french doors.

Measurements for flat curtain panel

First, determine the size of the door window by measuring its height and width. You need a larger fabric to fit the french door curtain rod pocket for the hardware and the seam allowance.

Add 3 inches to height and width measurements (calculating 1.5 inches per side).

If this is your first sewing project, add a little more than 3 inches.

Measurements for gathered curtain panel

In this case, you should also start from the parameters of the window. You also need to add a few inches for each dimension for the curtain rod pocket for the hardware and the seam allowance.

You need to add an extra length of fabric across the width of the window to create beautiful gathers and pleats.

Check double the width of the window! We recommend double the width of the window as you get plenty of excellent voluminous pleats.

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How to prepare fabric for a project

So, you have purchased the fabric of the required size. Now you should wash the fabric according to the manufacturer’s instructions and dry it.

Try to prevent shrinkage of the fabric on the finished panels. Press the dry fabric with an iron – it will be easier for you to cut and sew the future curtain.

The manufacturing process of simple french door curtains: a great tutorial

If your end goal is not one panel, but several, work on one panel at a time. Don’t think you’ll save a lot of time by cutting all the curtains to size at the same time – you’ll end up with crooked cuts and pattern mismatches.

Make sure you have a hand drill, screws, a sewing machine, fabric-colored thread, window hardware, scissors, a ruler, and a pencil.

Step 1: Cut the fabric correctly

Circle the desired dimensions on the fabric with a ruler and a simple pencil – strive for clarity.

You can also fold the fabric along the marked lines and iron them to make them easier to see.

Fold fabric twice towards the center, tucking raw edges under on the wrong side of the fabric and on both the left and right sides of the fabric. Then iron at the folds.

Attach the cut piece to the french door to make sure everything is correct.

Next, stitch the vertical sides of the future panel on both the right and left sides.

Step 2: Time to create the rod pockets

Now you need to make rod pockets at the top and bottom edge of the french door curtain panel.

Fold the raw edges to the back of the future panel with a short fold in the center and press this area on the fold with an iron.

Make it one fold, already deeper, just enough to fit the circle of the rod. Iron again along the fold line.

Make a seam along the edge of the rod pocket (it doesn’t matter that the seam is even – it will not be noticeable from the side). Press the rod pocket again if you think it’s necessary.

Carry out these steps with the top and bottom sides of the curtain panels.

Step 3: Gather tools and prepare french door curtain panels

Now you will need the following tools: the curtain rods themselves (window fittings), pre-made curtain panels, a hand drill with screws, and a level.

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Slip each drapery rod into the appropriate rod pocket.

If your french door curtain panel has pleats, fold the panel into even folds along rod pockets and apply it to the window before attaching the curtain rods.

Step 4: Time to attach the drapery rods to the french door.

Install the curtain hardware on the door following the manufacturer’s instructions. First, drill a hole with a drill so as not to split the wood.

Screw the brackets for the drapery rods to the top and bottom edge of the french door. Slide the drapery rods into the brackets. You’ve hung your panels!

How to line a curtain

If you have a style with a lining – this part is for you. In principle, all sewing steps will be similar. The only difference is that you duplicate all the steps for the lining, however, instead of just sewing the sides, you sew them together.

After you have sewn the right and left sides of the curtain panel, turn the fabric inside out and press with an iron.

This is necessary because in this area both the upper and lower raw edges are open. In the end, sew the top right and left vertical sides of the panel to better fix the shape.

FAQ

What string is used for beaded curtains?

We recommend using strong beading wire (like Accu-Flex). This type of stringing material can handle a great deal of use and will hold up well to the weight of the beads.

Can I make my own beaded curtain?

You can customize your curtains by choosing the color, size, material, and shape of the beads. If you succeed, you can add beaded curtains to almost any door or window in your home!

How many beads do I need to make a beaded curtain?

You will need to measure the height of the space you are covering with your beaded curtain to find out how many beads you will need for the curtain. For example, if you need to make one 6-foot strand of 6 mm round beads, you will need approximately 234 beads.

How do I make string-beaded curtains?

It’s really easy to do it! Measure your door windows, then create a scaled drawing. Prepare the dowel, the string or wire, and your beads. String the beads, then tie off the string. Finally, hang your dowel rod on the door frame.

Conclusion

We have shown you how easy it is to make french door curtains for home decor.

We hope that you can easily and quickly create your own unique copy of simple curtains without spending extra money.

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