Wednesday, May 12, 2010

My Take on Drop-cloth Drapes

But Mom, everyone else is doing it!  Yup, some genius out there in blogland figured out that painter's drop cloths are a thrifty way to have a huge yardage of fabric at hand to make curtains, drapes, slipcovers and other home decor items out of.  It comes in many different dimensions from a few yards worth, all the way up to 15 foot lengths for those two-story windows that are so expensive to cover.  It has great texture and flecks to it's oatmeal color, giving an impression of linen, but at such an affordable price.

I helped my friend, Jill, make some drapes for her apartment.  Not wanting to spend a lot for a temporary home, yet needing to cover the slider and adjoining window, drop cloth was a perfect solution.

We added a nice paisley fabirc band to the edges and bottom to dress it up a bit. It looks really pretty against her yellow wall.  We also pleated the top to give it some fullness. When we took this picture we didn't have enough clips to keep the sections between the pleats from "flopping".

A few hints about using drop cloths.  Try to buy at one store as there are differences in quality and colors.  I got mine at Home Depot.  I washed the fabric 3 times with loads of liquid fabric softener to get it nice and supple and to remove the faint odor to it.  You can also bleach the fabric it you want.  If you're using a large drop cloth, you may consider cutting it into smaller panels to fit better in your washer.

Internet Inspirations:

(The Lettered Cottage)
Probably the one that started it all. Simple shape held up by black clips.  Love the layered look by adding the bamboo shade.

Love the valance's band of fabric and cute hooks made from teacup hooks.

Trim the curtains and pillows with a cute cordinating fabric for a custom look.

I love how these look against a colored wall.  It softens the frames of the windows.

Add a band of fabric 2/3 of the way down.
Look at this darling ruffled edge and europen pleats at the top!  Subtle but custom-looking effect.

A darling ruffle to the bottom of a chair's slipcover.

(coastal nest.blogspot)
Nice slipcover made out of drop cloth.

This whole room was slipcovered to give it a lighter look and freshen up the outdated furniture.

Classic pleated slipcover from a drop cloth.

Great recover of dining chairs.  I love the nail head trim on the backs.

There's the ruffle again paired with a vintage number on the seat.

This gal replicated the "grain sack" look by painting initials and a stripe on the drop cloth before slipcovering the ottoman.
This lady used iron-on paper for your printer to get these designs on her pillows.  Add trim and you have a great Ballard design-inspired pillow.

Hope you were inspired to use drop cloths in your decorating. So what are you going to make with drop cloth?!


  1. They came out great! I'm hoping to make some for the living room, and possibly slipcover the sofa as well. Slipcovers scare me...I may chicken out on that.

  2. Your curtains came out great! I am going to "make" some for my daughters coastal themed room. I would love to make a slipcover for my sofa, too!

  3. You did such a nice job on the curtains! I love
    projects that don't cost too much money but are more idea and elbow grease, it is more rewarding, isn't it?
    By the way how are you doing Erin? I am so glad that you visited my link party! :)

  4. Hey there!

    Thanks for featuring our drapes!
    We're actually replacing them this week, but hey- they've been GREAT for the past few years, and I'll definitely use them in another room somehwere in the house!


  5. Wow! What a great post! Love how Jill's drapes turned out and love all the internet inspirations. I hadn't seen the slipcovers from dropcloths.

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