Tab top (fabric loops) linen curtains are not too hard to make, they just take a little bit of extra time. Metal rings attached to curtains can look great in many rooms, but if you want something a bit softer and that doesn't make that clinging noise when you move them, then going for tab top drapes can be a good idea.
So here we sewed tab top linen curtains, with wooden decorative buttons attached and darker linen stripes for an interesting touch. Let's take a look at how to sew these drapes!
First of all, measure your window and see how much fabric you need. I used the whole width of the fabric for each panel and bought about 4 yards of white linen. I believe this was a cotton / linen blend since they didn't have a 100% white linen at my local Joanns.
Now, the first thing to do is to wash all the fabric before cutting. Just in case you'll wash these curtains later on, you don't anything to shrink or look weird.
Cut out the panels, and make sure to take edges into account. Remember, we're doing loops here, so you don't need fabric accounted for a pocket to put the rod through. My curtains were a bit too short when done, so I added another linen panel at the bottom which I can highly recommend because then you don't have to be so very careful about the height at first. I would say calculate how much fabric you need like this: take the length that you want your curtains to be ad add about three inches. Make sure to cut both panels exactly the same height, or else it can really look weird!
Hem the sides of the panels first. Then hem the top part where the loops will attach. Here fold down about one inch to create a slightly wider edge.
Cut out the tab top parts. I cut them the size of 7 x 2 inches, then hemmed by ironing and sewing.
Measure out where you want the loops on the panels, I placed them every 4 inches or so. One end on each side of the fabric, pin, and then sew to attach.
For a decorative touch I sewed on a wooden button on the outside of each loop, right where it attaches to the curtain.
Now it's time to work on the stripes. I cut out about two inch wide stripes of a darker linen fabric, the width of the curtain fabrics. I zig zagged the edges, however that's not really necessary to do.
Ironed in the edges.
And attached them to the fabric with pins. I measured about 10 inches from the top of the starting stripe, and then put the second one 2 inches down.
Make sure you pin these stripes exactly (or as close as you can) at the same distance for both curtain panels, because if they don't meet up later when hanging it will look weird.
Sew them onto the fabric, and then also finish off the edges of the stripes.
Both panels are looking good, and the stripes almost match perfectly.
And first fitting. No! They look too short. This was something I suspected, so that gave me an opportunity to add a thick linen border at the bottom that would match the stripes.
I added a border about 7 inches high. Hemmed the bottom edge, folded the top edge and ironed, and pinned to the bottom of the curtains.
Second time around: this time I had carefully ironed each panel before putting up.
And they look great! Tab tops look nice with buttons.
Bottom of the drapes now matches nicely.
It's preferable to make drapes a bit too long than a bit too short!
These linen curtains let in quite a bit of light, while still providing some privacy.
From a distance. I really like how they provide somewhat of a visual element, without taking over completely. I was really tempted to use navy linen for the stripes which I'm sure would have looked really nice. However, I figured there's enough blue in this space already, better go with something a bit more subtle.
And that's that! Pretty easy to sew, however there are a lot of steps, and these curtains did take a fair amount of time to sew. But, no step is that difficult and they certainly look more interesting than generic curtains from the store.