Author Topic: Curtains for Cheap?  (Read 3890 times)

Tyson

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Curtains for Cheap?
« on: December 22, 2016, 04:11:10 PM »
OK, I'm getting some $$ as a bonus at work and I'd like to put in some curtains in my basement mostly because the wooden shades we have in there now don't do much to block the cold. I'm also thinking of putting up a rod with a curtain in front of our fireplace down there, too.  Because we don't use it and its a bit drafty. 

Where can I find some nice curtains (or curtain material)?  I don't know anything about curtains or prices, total newb here. 

NV Teacher

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2016, 04:57:55 PM »
My friend hangs vintage quilts over her drafty windows and doors.  It makes a big difference.  She bought most of them at thrift stores and yard sales.  You could make curtains but to prevent heat loss you will need heavy upholstery fabric.  The good stuff will be $30 a yard and up.  Another thing my friend did was to get a couple sheets of rigid foam insulation and cut pieces that fit snugly in the window frames.  It also blocks the light but she found the heat savings to be worth it.

Grosgrain

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2016, 07:08:58 PM »
My best deals on curtains and rods have come from off-price retailers like Ross, TJMaxx/Homegoods, and Tuesday Morning. I got an amazing deal on insulated panels for around $8 a pair(!) at Ross one time. Unfortunately, their stock is all over the place so you never know what you might find. If you don't want to hunt around, IKEA or Target have reasonable, and attractive, options.

I agree that the yardage needed to make heavy curtains would be a lot more expensive.

AMandM

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2016, 09:18:43 PM »
A cheap way to get insulated curtains, if you can sew:  Buy a bedspread or quilt or blanket that you like the look of at a thrift store.  Cut to size* and finish cut edge(s).  Sew a strip of fabrics across the back of the curtain, open at each edge, to form a casing for the curtain rod.

* to keep the insulation value high, you will want the curtain to hang flat, not gathered, so the width of the curtain will be about the width of the window.  You can cut the quilt a little larger than the window and hang the curtain flush against the window frame; or you can cut it the size of the window opening itself and hang the curtain inside the window frame.

MsPeacock

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2016, 09:23:53 PM »
IKEA seems to have very cheap otions, and Target. Buying material is most likely significantly more expensive.

Villanelle

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2016, 01:02:41 AM »
A cheap way to get insulated curtains, if you can sew:  Buy a bedspread or quilt or blanket that you like the look of at a thrift store.  Cut to size* and finish cut edge(s).  Sew a strip of fabrics across the back of the curtain, open at each edge, to form a casing for the curtain rod.

* to keep the insulation value high, you will want the curtain to hang flat, not gathered, so the width of the curtain will be about the width of the window.  You can cut the quilt a little larger than the window and hang the curtain flush against the window frame; or you can cut it the size of the window opening itself and hang the curtain inside the window frame.

And if you don't sew, you may be able to find someone who does and is happy to make a few bucks on a fairly easy project. 

If you don't care terribly much about the aesthetics, you can also just by blankets or whatever you fan find cheap or at a thrift store. As mentioned something that hangs flat works better as insulation, but you can hang a rod that is larger than the window, so adjust the rod to be the size of the blanket, and you'll be fine.  And you can probably make a blanket in to a curtain without sewing anything, using hem tape to make the pocket at the top.  I'm not sure how that would work with super fuzzy fabrics, but I think you could still make it work, perhaps using two rows of hem tape for better adhesion and to support the weight. 

And blankets or some kind of quilted material is going to do much more to insulate than fabric curtains, even most lines curtains.  Just as they will keep you warmer in bed than a couple of sheets of fabric would.

Cranky

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2016, 05:51:06 AM »
If you are going to buy fabric make sure to get a coupon at JoAnns. Home decor fabric is pretty expensive.

honeybbq

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #7 on: December 23, 2016, 11:05:24 AM »
IKEA has the cheapest ones I've found and a decent selection.

Lookilu

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #8 on: December 23, 2016, 11:47:24 AM »
Check out the JC Penney clearance/closeout section online. I found a long curtain rod and long heavy drapes for our 10' slider for under $200. And they even look nice!

Cativa

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #9 on: December 23, 2016, 01:21:35 PM »
Seconding thrift stores and clearance.  If you really want to block the heat or cold, you will want thermal coating or at least heavy material.  I don't know how good of quality you will find at discount stores.

k_mcsparin

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #10 on: December 23, 2016, 05:25:21 PM »
Goodwill has racks of curtains -- many are well made.

Mother Fussbudget

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2016, 06:03:20 PM »
My local Grocery Outlet (chain) store has an aisle of goods like curtains for VERY discounted prices.
Big Lots sometimes has things like curtains.

Hunny156

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2016, 06:41:13 PM »
Ikea and big lots have been very useful to me.  We have a few big lots in my area, I've often had to make trips to several locations to complete a set of Windows, but well worth it for the cost.

I have one set of Windows that is a custom, oversized window.  Only option is custom curtains, I got quotes of over $1k!  I researched and bought a well reviewed, basic sewing machine for $40.  Scrolled through hundreds of pages of fabric auctions on eBay, found a pattern I liked of heavy duty upholstery fabric for $80 for 10 yards, which was more than I needed, but wanted to be safe.

Took me about 12 hours to prep the fabric and hem it properly, using online tutorials as a guide.  My stitching isn't great, and maneuvering that much thick fabric through a sewing machine was daunting at times, but they look great now that they are hung, and no one looks at the stitching except me!  Good thing I like the pattern, and worth it for the $120 invested.  Plus I use the sewing machine to make small alterations now too.  😊

Tyson

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2016, 07:42:51 PM »
Man, you guys rock!  I'll check out all of those ideas.

MBot

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #14 on: December 24, 2016, 03:14:08 PM »
FWIW check your ceiling height before buying curtains. Ikea is usually the only place where you can get 96" curtains. Most come as 84" from most other stores.

You can always hang curtains higher nearer the ceiling than the top of your window frame, but there should generally not be a gap between the curtains and the floor. Either just to the windowsill or all the way to the floor.

Also curtains in a similar colour to the wall will help the space seem bigger.  A dark curtain in a light room or vice versa will visually divide the space.

This post has a useful illustration about the "high and wide" rule (hang only a little wider than the window) http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/psa-hang-curtains-high-wide-elements-of-style-170163



MBot

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #15 on: December 24, 2016, 03:16:05 PM »
(When we lived in a basement we still hung curtains floor to ceiling. It helped to make the room seem higher ceilinged.)

MrsPete

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #16 on: December 25, 2016, 10:03:14 AM »
I bought some fantastic VERY THICK insulating curtains on clearance at Bed, Bath & Beyond.  With a 20% off coupon (always available here), they were only $20 per window.  I love the pattern. 

Since you're talking about insulated curtains too, I'll mention this:  I didn't realize until I was carrying the curtains out in a bag (and, wouldn't you know it, I parked at the far, far end of the parking lot that day) just how VERY, VERY HEAVY they are.  That's why I haven't hung them yet:  I need to upgrade my curtain rods before I hang these things.  I'm 100% certain they'd rip out my current light-quality curtain rods.  You can be smarter than me and think this through while you're making your purchase.

KCalla

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #17 on: December 27, 2016, 07:16:31 PM »
Consider ending curtains at least an inch or so off the floor in a basement because of humidity that often comes off a basement floor, even in a dryer climate.

If you don't need to open your basement windows, you can achieve incredible draft protection using "shrink film" clear plastic that tightens when exposed to a blowdryer's heat.   I've used 3M's product "Window Insulator Kit", but I imagine other companies make it, too.  Target has a 5 window kit for under $12. It sounds like it would look bad, but really pretty good.  If  your shutters are "outside mount" (not within the window casing and have room for the tape) you would not even see the film.  If your shutters are "inside mount" (mounted within the window casing) it would be even easier to install over them and much less obvious than might be though (though certainly not for a very formal room)

Re: fireplace -  worth checking that the damper is closed when not in use.   Probably too simple to be worth mentioning (and only of a little help)

Livingthedream55

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #18 on: January 04, 2017, 08:21:46 AM »
Do you have a local "buy Nothing" group on FaceBook?

If not, another vote for Ikea.

Miss Piggy

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Re: Curtains for Cheap?
« Reply #19 on: January 05, 2017, 03:39:48 PM »
Is this a finished or unfinished basement? Ours is unfinished, so we had no need for aesthetics, but we did want privacy. We bought some tension rods, stuck them in the window "frames." Then we got some cheap but attractive fabric (not thick or warm), cut it to size, and threw it over each rod. We cut the fabric exactly twice as long as it needed to be, so half is behind the rod, and half is in front of the rod; the rod kind of "folds" the fabric in half. Both sides show the fabric pattern, so we had to get something that wouldn't look upside down if looking in from the outside (think strips or patterns, but not patterns that clearly have a top and bottom). No sewing...just unfinished cut fabric. Like I said, this was for an unfinished basement. Total spent for 4 windows: less than $20.