I’m sure many of you are like me in that you see textile items for what they are, fabric! So, when thrifting I often sift through the housewares textile section, not only in hopes of finding the occasional vintage piece, but to add to my newer fabric stash as well. There is nothing like finding old bedspreads, sheets and curtains to get me all giddy thinking of what ALL THAT FABRIC can make! So, you can imagine my excitement when I came across a tweedy curtain panel in shades of gray a few weeks back at the Goodwill. At 54″ X 84″ and apparently brand new from Target, I could see lots of potential. The $4.99 price tag didn’t hurt much either, especially since these are normally around $33.00 a panel. WOOT to the BUDGET!
You see, my son’s “Big Boy” room is going to be primarily gray, including the bedding. The color will come in later with accessories that are much easier to change out as he grows and his tastes change.
Of course my initial reaction was that I really would love at least two of these panels so I could create curtains, but after some quick thinking about other uses I realized this would be the perfect weight for the bed skirt. The process I used to create the skirt was my usual, eyeballing, pinning, eyeballing again. I started by measuring the length I would need for the skirt to drape all the way to the floor, adding a couple of inches along the top edge so I would have something to stitch to the middle panel that lies on top of the box springs. Since I was covering a twin bed this panel was exactly the length I needed if I laid it on its side and draped it over the edge. After measuring and getting a feel for how it would look, I laid the panel out across the floor and made marks with tailor’s chalk down one side. I ended up using a width measurement of 15″ and cut the grommet end off about 1/2″ below the stitch line of the top hem. In order to make the sewing on this project extra easy I measured and cut up from the hemmed edges of the panel. That way I avoided having to re-do any measuring and hemming; it was done already.
After cutting the sides out off of the panel I laid them along the box spring edge and used pins to hold it in place at the correct drape to the floor. Using the left over middle section from the bottom edge of the curtain panel I cut pieces to fill the gaps along the two ends of the bed. I laid these out along the ends and pinned them in place too just to be sure everything was still measuring up to the plan. After checking and double checking everything I pulled the pieces off the box spring and stitched the strips together, serging all cut edges. Then I took the whole thing back to the bed, laid it out and pinned it back in place.
Since I had actually had more length in these strips than needed I was able to add some pleats on each corner, which not only added some interest, but also helped in ease around the bed frame and wheels. After creating the pleats and pinning them into place along the box springs I used a piece of utility cotton and cut it to fit the top of the box springs. Of course, I made sure the cotton fabric overlapped the curtain fabric along the edges so that there would be room to sew it all together.
The next part was probably the most daunting simply because I had to pin the utility cotton along the edges of the curtain panel fabric, remove the whole thing and stitch it into place without shifting the edges or the pleats. I started by running a stitch along the edge to connect all the pieces, then I put the whole thing back in place along the box springs to be sure the skirt hung correctly.
Lucky for me there were no major issues, so I pulled it off again and added another row of stitching to reinforce the edges.
Wholla! Bedskirt from a curtain panel!
Now, don’t judge too harshly! This room is still in progress and I have yet to purchase the quilt, but this gives you the gist of what I accomplished with just one $4.99 thrifted curtain panel. I would say it’s a pretty good win and I look forward to tweaking the other textiles I have found to go in this room. More to come as this project progresses.