Saturday, 28 April 2012

Calculating the correct amount of fabric for a pair of curtains

Having recently stocked our shelves with some stunning curtaining, we thought we offer you some helpful assistance on how to calculate how much fabric you will need to create your new pair.

Make the right choice
Start by selecting your fabric. Your choice will not only have a dramatic impact on your view, but it will also affect the amount of fabric you will need to purchase. Make a note of the width of the fabric and, if present, the width of the repeated pattern (this should be stated on the fabric) as these are important to your calculations. Now is also the time to choose your heading tape. The type of pleat you choose will influence later calculations. Standard heading tape will give your curtains shallow pleats, whilst pencil pleat tape will garner deep pleats.

Calculating the number of fabric widths
Now that you have selected your fabric, you will need to calculate how many lengths you will need to cover to width of the window.
Start by measuring the length of the curtain track or pole you will be using.
Multiply this length by either 1.5 if you have chosen to use standard heading tape, or 2.5 for pencil pleat tape.
Add 20cm for the side hems.
Divide by the width of the fabric and round up to the nearest whole number (This will give you the number of widths of fabric you will need to cover the whole window).
Divide by 2 (This is how many widths of fabric you will need for each curtain).

Calculating the cutting length
If you are using a curtain pole start measuring from the base of the rings from which the curtains will hang.
If you are using curtain tracks measure from 1cm above the top edge of the track. This will ensure that when hanging the curtains will hide the track from view.
For floor-length curtains allow a 1.5cm clearance between the lower edge of the curtain and the floor. If you, however, would like them to touch the floor add an extra 5cm and if you are looking to be a little more dramatic and would like your curtains to pool on the floor add 51cm to the length.

Calculating the total amount of fabric you need to buy
For plain fabric:
No. of Widths x Cutting Length = Amt of Fabric

For patterned fabric with an obvious design:
In this case you will need to purchase extra fabric, as the length must be cut at the same point in the design to ensure its continuity when the curtains are drawn.
No. of Widths x (Length of Pattern Repeat + Cutting Length) + 10cm per curtain = Amt of Fabric

Calculating how much lining you’ll need
For plain fabric:
The amount of lining is equal to the amount of curtaining fabric.

For patterned fabric:
The amount of lining is equal to the amount of curtaining fabric minus any extra lengths that were added for the design repeats.

Calculating how much heading tape to buy
Lastly, take the measurement you made in the beginning of your curtain track or pole and add another 10cm.

You are now ready to purchase your fabric. Remember that at Fabric and Textile Warehouse you can get fabulous fabrics at wholesale prices. Loyalty card holders get a further 2.5% discount on all purchases. Get yours today at your local branch.

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