You have dressed your windows with beautiful floral curtains and you love them a lot as they lend your home a lively, charming ambiance. However, when you want to block harsh, direct sunlight filtering into your living room, these curtains may fall short in meeting your needs. Also, you cannot rely on them to ensure you have 100% privacy in your bedroom. Only blackout curtains can do this job perfectly. So, does that mean you have to replace your lovely, colorful curtains? Does that mean you have to spend a lot again on an altogether new set of curtains and discard the existing ones?
No, not necessarily. There is an easy, cost-effective way to add blackout to your existing curtains! Keep reading to know how to turn your regular curtains into blackout curtains without having to spend much.
Benefits of blackout curtains
- If you want to take a nap during the day or do not want to disturb your baby’s sound sleep, you will want to make your room pitch dark. Regular curtains, no matter how heavy they are, can allow a certain amount of light to pass through even when they are fully drawn over the window. On the other hand, blackout curtains block 100% of the sunlight, as they are made of multiple layers of thick, non-transparent, foam-backed fabrics. These curtains are useful even at night when you don’t want light from the streetlights seep through the window and disturb your sleep.
- Blackout curtains enable you to create a dim, calm place to rest by not only blocking light but also absorbing sound. Any noise coming from outside will be significantly reduced by blackout curtains as they are thickly layered.
- When you have dressed your windows with blackout fabrics, you can significantly save on your energy bills as your curtains will insulate your room from extreme weather conditions.
- The thick and tightly woven fabrics protect your furniture from wear and tear as they prevent extreme light and dust from filtering through the window.
- When you want complete privacy, blackout curtains are the best as nobody can hear or see any movement from outside.
How to add blackout lining to your existing curtains
For eyelet curtains
If you have dressed your windows with eyelet curtains, you can easily turn them into blackout curtains. Follow these steps:
- Measure the length and width of your existing curtain.
- Purchase a blackout lining eyelet curtain of the same size.
- Spread your existing eyelet curtain face down on a surface, which is clean and flat. Now, spread the blackout lining eyelet curtain on top of this, so that the eyelets of both curtains come together.
- Pass a single curtain pole through both eyelets and mount them on the window. Enjoy the blackout effect!
For taped curtains
- Spread your existing taped curtain face down on a flat surface
- The curtain should be gathered to the desired width
- Place the blackout lining fabric on top of the curtain and secure it with a single curtain hook.
- Remember, you should not use the gathering strings to connect. To ensure a secure fit, use the slit in the bottom of the curtain tape.
- Your blackout curtain is ready. Turn the curtain hooks around and hang it over the window.
The sewing method
- You can sew a lining fabric into your curtain to give it the blackout effect. To do this, first, lay your curtain down in such a way that the backside faces up.
- The next step is to measure how much blackout lining material you will need. While measuring, leave some extra space – about 1-2 inches – as seam allowance. You don’t have to open the stitches of the existing curtain you have bought from the store. You will have to sew the lining over the stitch on the curtain.
- Cut the lining fabric as per the size and sew it into the curtain. You can leave the bottom unstitched and sew only the top and the two sides. Your blackout curtains are now ready to hang.
Blackout linings not only make your curtains more durable, but also preserve them from fading. Depending on the degree of darkness you want to ensure, you can also go for a 2-pass lining material which will have two layers: a layer of black foam, then the lighter layer.
Before spending on the lining material, you need to make sure that the texture and color of the material matches the fabric of your existing curtain. Cotton is the most soothing fabric for lining which cools your room. With a cotton lining, your curtain drapes beautifully. If you want a lining material that does not wrinkle easily, choose polyester. Made with synthetic fiber, polyester is strong and durable. It does not fade easily due to sunlight. If you want to enjoy the benefits of both polyester and cotton, choose polycotton. Linings made from the blend of the two are lightweight and can withstand mildew and sunlight. Blackout linings are available in a wide range of colors – from beige and white to grey and black. You can choose thermal insulated fabric which reduces heat transfer and insulates the room, thereby reducing your energy bills. Then, there are flame-retardant fabrics, which are less prone to catching and sustaining fire. They are treated with certain chemicals that prevent the flame from going out of control in case of fire accidents. You can also buy water-resistant lining which is soft and does not fade easily.