Updated: 2/2/2020 This post shows 5 Steps to Customize Ready Made Drapes

I’ve recently completed another Drapery DIY. As I’ve written before, if you can sew straight lines, you can make beautiful, simple drapes. But, if you don’t own a sewing machine, this post will explain 5 Steps to Customize Ready Made Drapes for a more expensive look.

Never fear, if you’d rather just buy the custom finished product, I have found some beautiful custom drapes that are very similar to the ones I’m customizing, but expect to pay a bit more than the DIY version. They are linked below.

Here is a post with a similar look from a couple of years back: Custom Drapery Hack – How to get an Expensive Custom Drapery Look using Ready Made Drapes and Chinoiserie Master Bedroom Makeover – Window Treatments

White Drapes with bullion fringe and vintage chair

Five Steps to Achieving Custom Drapery looks with Ready Made Curtains:

  1. Purchasing Two Panels per side for a Fuller Look
  2. Add fringe – either touch the floor or just above
  3. Consider Lively Details Pom Poms, Buttons, Tassels – sew or hot glue in place
  4. Attach Decorative Trim – sew or hot glue in place
  5. Use Drapery Clips for Hanging
Leather Chair and Ready Made Drapes

The supplies I used in this DIY for Customizing Ready Made Drapes:

  • Ready – Made Drapes
  • Fringe
  • Glue Gun  OR Sewing Machine OR Needle and Thread
  • Pom Poms (optional)
  • Greek Key Trim
  • Straight Pins
white bullion fringe and pom poms glue gun , and white and black greek key trim for curtains
Simple Supplies for Curtain DIY

Two Ready Made Drapery Panels Per Side to Create a Custom Look

Creating the fullness of custom drapes, can be achieved by using two panels per side. Yes, it will double the cost of, but you will still be well under the price of custom drapes.  When hanging the drapes, carefully combine the two panels with one of the clips, and the look will be seamless.

White Drapes in hand

Customize Ready Made Drapes with Fringe

Barely brushing the floor was the drapery lenght I preferred. The 96″ standard ready mades didn’t quite reach the desired look. But, the next standard length would have required hemming. I chose, instead, to add the beautiful bullion fringe instead. Evidently, fringed bottomed drapes are the rage, I didn’t know at the time. You can either hand sew, machine stitch or hot glue the fringe in place. I suggest pinning the fringe in place before you move forward with your sewing/gluing.

White Drapes with Greek Key Trim

Add Fun, Lively Details

Fluffy White Pom Poms are always good for adding a fun, casual touch to just about anything. (In the link to the drapery hack above I used large oversized muli-colored capiz shells!) Again, the ever-ready hot glue gun made the addition quick and easy. Placement would be just below where you attach the clips. My drapes were pinch pleated, providing the exact location for the pom poms (and for clipping), without a measuring tape. However, you achieve a great look without the pleats; just measure and clips.

White Drapes with Greek Key Trim

Attach Decorative Trim

The types of trim are endless and range from inexpensive tape to exquisite embroidery trim of varying widths. Greek key trim works well in my chinoiserie home. I pinned the trim along the vertical hem, one inch from the edge. Once again, hot glue gun did a marvelous job for me. I did run the hot glue, 6 to 8 inches at a time, down both sides of the Greek key trim to help it to lay flat.

Wjote Dra[es amd Greek Key Trim

Hang with Drapery Clips

I used my existing curtain rod and drapery clips. There are numerous sources for these on-line and at retail brick and mortar. Prices will range from $25 – $125 depending on what you like. Here are similar poles, finials, clips, plus some that I’m loving these days.

I did a similar treatment recently in my master bedroom. It’s linked above.

Bay Window with Elegant White Curtains and Pom Pom Fringe
Add Trim to Curtains for Custom Look

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Comments (16)

  1. Janet Coon


    Such an easy yet effective way to customize a room. Love the elegant Greek Key design!

    • Southern Nell Gracious Living


      Thank you, Janet. I”m a Greek key fan as well!

  2. Reply

    Thank you for the lovely and informative post! It’s just what I need after moving into my new apartment. Pinned for reference.

    • Southern Nell Gracious Living


      Thank you, Meegan! I’m so glad you found the post informative!!

    • Southern Nell Gracious Living


      Hurray, Maureen!! That’s is just what I was hoping to do! Would love to hear what you do with your Ikea curtains!

  3. Reply

    Great tips! Reminded me of the days long ago when I worked in JP Penney’s drape department. Biggest mistakes…not full enough and wrong measurements especially in the length.

    • Southern Nell Gracious Living


      I really appreciate the supportive comments! Thank you!!

    • Southern Nell Gracious Living


      Glad you found some ideas! Thank you for the kind feedback!!

    • Southern Nell Gracious Living


      Thank you so much! Glad you could use the ideas on the post!

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