DIY Pleated Drapery Panels

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Pinch-Pleated draperies add style and a formal beauty to any room and the ability to open and close draperies easily.

1. Measure and cut fabric. Use three times the width of opening plus 5″ for side hems. Use desired length plus 8.5″ for hem and header (using 4″ buckram).

2. Hemming: Sides – fold 1 1/4″ doubled on each side, steam press, blind stitch. Bottom – fold down 1/2″, and then 4″, steam and blind stitch.

3. Header: Serge 4″ buckram to the top, wrong side of panel. Fold down to the inside. Steam press. Baste stitch or pin.

4. Marking Pleats: Alternate marks of 3″ and 6″ across the top. Do this with long straight pins. Begin and end with the 3″ space. If you have misjudged your measurements, take the slack or overage up in the 6″ spaces. After marking, bring the pins together so that the 6″ are folded to the outside. This leaves 3″ between each pleat. Stitch from the top of the panel to the bottom of the buckram (4″) on the outside of the panel leaving a fold of fabric facing outward. After you have stitched all of the 6″ spaces make the pleat.

5. Making the Pleat: Holding the 6″ “pinch” an triple accordian pleat in the fabric. Tack it down at the bottom and center of the pleat. Do this by using a long stitch back and forth several times.

Tip: Pin every 6″ to prevent stretching while sewing hems. This will make it much easier when you do this DIY home improvement project.


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