Tuesday, January 3, 2012

I Dare You... To Paint Your Curtains

The Boy and I built our house this past summer with help from my parents and a few friends. When it was all done, I had a vision for our living room: horizontally striped, teal curtains. Problem was-- I have 9 foot ceilings. Do you know how hard it is to find 108-inch curtains?! I searched local stores, I searched the Internet high and low... And can you believe it? For once, even the vast resources available online didn't turn up a single curtain which matched the vision I had. I almost gave up... almost. Then, I decided to dare to try something I had found.. you guessed it.. on Pinterest!

Painting curtains. eek.

Nervously, timidly.. I set out to my local Home Depot for 4 painter's drop cloths. Drop cloths as curtains were quite the thing around the blog world a while ago, so there was plenty of information available, through which I learned that Home Depot carries drop cloths without seams, which was what I needed. Four packs of canvas drop cloth.

Next stop: Michael's, for textile medium. I had a bit of a hard time finding this.. apparently it's not too common. The one I ended up getting was by Delta, in case anybody else needs help with this.

I had a gallon of teal paint at home, which I had bought a few months earlier for $4 in the oops section at Sherwin Williams.

I washed and dried the drop cloths to get rid of some of the stiffness and allow them to shrink. I don't think I will ever dare to wash my curtains, though, so if you aren't planning to, either, you probably don't need to wash them. As much as they shrunk in the dryer, they almost got to be too short!

I used Stitch Witchery to make a pocket for a curtain rod. I was planning on using PVC pipes for my rods, so I made sure to make the pocket wide enough. Not too wide, though.. since.. like I said, my ceilings are 9 feet tall, and the drop cloths had already shrunk in the dryer.

Now here comes the fun part, you think...
..um, no. Now that I was all ready to go, I had to measure my lines. It's boring, but not as hard as one might think. I decided to make my stripes 7 inches wide and mark them off with masking tape. I ran out of masking tape half-way through (stupid me for not buying a new roll), so I actually reused some of my tape 3 times. Sounds impossible.. but it worked. So, no need to worry about paint leaking through if you attach it well. I just measured 7 inches down on each side, and then stretched the tape across and got straight lines that way. Not very careful, I know.. but I'm not known for being careful.

When taping off, make sure to account for the width of the tape. In other words- the unpainted stripes will look smaller when taped off.

I mixed a bottle of texture medium into about a quart of paint (not what the directions say.. but.. I don't do well with following directions).. and now, finally, it was time to start painting!

..which was exciting for a grand total of about 5 minutes. Then it kinda became a drag. But I couldn't quit.. because the drop cloths soaked up so much of the paint, that it took me 30 minutes for EACH stripe.

I made four curtains, with eleven stripes each. Do the math.
I was 8 months pregnant at this point, too.. so all that standing and painting was enough to drive me mad. But I wanted my striped curtains, so I just kept going. Two seasons of I Love Lucy kept me entertained, at least.

Then I ironed them all backwards. 

To be honest.. I'm not sure if I would do this again, just because it took sooo long. But was it worth it? You bet! I have the exact curtains I had envisioned.. and I still love them 5 months later!

Total price? Hmm.. I think I paid about $30 for the drop cloths.. $10 for the two bottles of texture medium (used coupons).. and $4 for my gallon of oops paint (which I only used half of). That makes $44 for all four... or $11 per curtain panel. Yeah? Yeah! That's how I roll.. haha. I don't think I have a single item of decor in my house which I paid full price for!

I'm linking this up to:
The Southern Product Queen
Chatty Chics