The Ridiculously Easy Curtain Hack That Can Save You Hundreds of Dollars

published Jul 11, 2020
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Credit: Emma Fiala

You’ve probably checked at least a couple of home projects off of your to-do list while spending so much time at home this year—and yes, even organizing that pesky hall closet counts. If you’re still feeling motivated to make a quick but meaningful upgrade though, I have the perfect home hack for you. It’s affordable, and you can get supplies for it easily, which is especially key these days.

Credit: Corey Willis

What exactly is this easy hack, you ask? Turning a shower curtain into actual drapery, for your living room or otherwise. If you think this seems silly or worry there’s no way this concept could look stylish, think again. Would you have known the curtains in the photo above were actually of the bathroom variety if I hadn’t said anything? Could’ve fooled me!

It’s not like there aren’t tons of great curtain options on the market. The problem is that they’re often fairly expensive, especially when it comes to linen and other speciality fabrics. Moreover, if you have a lot of windows, the cost of drapery and other types of window treatments really does add up. Sure, you can go curtain-less, but drapery, in addition to blocking the sun when needed and providing some semblance of privacy, definitely brings instant polish to a room. The next time you’re thinking about buying new curtains (or if you haven’t gotten around to it yet in your current place), I suggest you start by looking for something comparable (and likely cheaper) in the bathroom section. Since shower curtains tend to be wider than drapery panels, you’ll be getting more bang for your buck when it comes to fullness, too.

In the room shown above, blogger Corey Willis used grommet tape, grommet rings, and a sewing machine to take this hack on. She shared the full how-to process on her website, but you certainly don’t have to be a highly experienced crafter to replicate the look in your own space. For a simpler option, you could forgo the grommets altogether and use standard curtain clip rings to secure the shower curtains to your drapery rods. No-sew tape could also be used for hemming, though depending on the size of your windows, you might need to sew two curtains together for length.

Another option for additional length (if you need it) is to trim out your shower curtain with extra fabric in a contrasting color or pattern, just as blogger Kimberly West did here. Like Willis, West opted for a curtain with thick blue stripes, but she then added her a floral panel along the bottom for something totally unique. The sky is the limit when it comes to this kind of customization.

As a renter, I’m personally inclined to try out a project like this one for a couple of reasons. For one, rental blinds generally aren’t too fun to look at, and often the nicest styles have probably seen better days. Also, as mentioned above, drapery can be expensive, even when you’re not talking custom, so it’s often not the most worthwhile investment for a short-term living situation. That said, window treatments are, for the most part, essential, so why not make your own drapes, cutting costs with this hack? You may even get lucky and not have to lift a finger at all to make a set of shower curtains work for your windows’ dimensions.

Oh, and while we’re on the topic, note that plenty of people opt to reverse this project and hang traditional curtains in front of the shower. If you end up doing either of these things (or both!), let us know how it turned out in the comments and find more DIY curtain ideas here.