No-Sew Blackout Curtains for the Bedroom

Our windows are slooowly getting some lovin’ around here. Last week, I showed you guys our new bamboo shades in the bedroom. While that helped provide some privacy & block a bit of light…we still had some very large doors to cover up in this space.

Here’s a look at those windows back on our closing day. Master-bedroom-doors-augusta-before

1-bedroom-curtains-before

Before we painted, we took the curtains and rod down and donated them knowing fully well that we’d eventually tackle our own window treatments for the doors.

I hemmed and hawed for a few weeks, trying to decided exactly what we wanted to do in here. And ultimately, I decided that curtains would work well with the whole door situation, and they could also make our already tall ceilings…appear even taller. 03-master-bedroom-sliding-doors

I absolutely looooove the natural light that streams into this room. It’s fabulous and illuminates the entire space. But when you want a little extra shut eye on the weekends…it’s not exactly easy to snooze past sunrise with light in your face. So I knew I needed curtains, and they’d have to be blackout curtains.

What to Buy

I love the Ikea Ritva curtains because they have a nice linen texture, and a good weight to them. But alone they allow way too much light to pass through. So I also picked up the Ikea Glasnava blackout curtain liners. 07-ritva-curtains-extra-longKnowing that I wanted to hang my curtains high & wide (more on that below…), I purchased the 118″ Ritva curtains. I highly recommend getting extra long curtains and hemming them yourself. You don’t want to be limited when you go to hang your curtain rod. I also picked up 2 packs of each, knowing I needed 4 curtains total. 02-curtain-hardware-bedroom

As for the rod, I went with this simple black curtain rod from Lowe’s. I wanted something simple & classic, and these fit the bill. As Sherry from Young House Loves says, “black curtain rods are the eyeliner of windows.” I couldn’t agree more. #prettyprettywindows

05-where-to-hang-your-curtain-rod

How to DIY No-Sew Blackout Curtains

Before tending to the curtains, I hung the rod. In order to make my ceilings appear taller, and the windows to appear wider…I set the rod quite a few inches outside of the window. I went 4 inches from the ceiling, and 8 inches outside of the door frame. I’ve read that 2-4 inches down from the ceiling is a good rule of thumb. As for the width…you can go anywhere from 6-10 inches outside the window frame. It all depends on your room, but just remember higher & wider is best!

With the rod up, it was time to get to work on the curtains.

Rookie Tip: As you hang the rod, make sure you wash both your liners and your curtains in the wash. They will all shrink quite a bit. You can then iron them all, which is a huge pain…but is a must if you want to get them looking good. This step took a lot of time, but was worth it in the end. 

08-hooks-with-glasnava-curtainsThese are the little clips that come in the package with the blackout liner. You’ll use these to hook the liner directly to your curtains.

They didn’t exactly come with the best directions (ohhhh Ikea…), so here is a closer look at how I hooked mine. 5-curtain-hooksThen I took my curtain rod ring and clipped it directly to the liner & curtain, and strung all 4 up on my curtain rod.

With the curtains & liners hanging from the rod, I was able to get an accurate measurement for hemming. In fact, I went ahead and cut off the excess right there on the ground.

First I did the liner. 09-trimming-blackout-curtain10-scrap-material-scissorsThen I moved onto the curtain. 11-pin-in-curtainNow I’m no seamstress, but I do know how to measure for a hem. You’ll just need sewing needles and insert them straight across the entire width of the curtain where it meets the floor. 12-measuring-bottom-of-curtainsI wanted my hem to be 3 inches, so I measured 3 inches out from my needles and marked the curtain all the way across. 13-cutting-curtainsThen, it was cutting time!

Now this next step may sound legit crazy to you, but I’m just sharing the way I did these curtains as a can’t-even-sew-on-a-button kinda gal. Attaching the liner to the curtain, and hemming the bottom is probably a super simple sewing job. But instead I decided to use hemming tape. It took a bit of time & patience, but I didn’t have to struggle through the potentially painful project of pricking myself with a needle as I tried to sew this all together.

I grabbed some hemming tape from Ikea (it’s right there in the curtain section), and my hair straightener. Yes. I said hair straightener.

14-hair-straightener

Sure this baby tames the frizz, but it also came in handy for this project. Keeping my curtains hung on the rod, I went ahead and used hemming tape to keep the liner & the curtain together on the edges. Doing this with the curtains hung made it really easy, as I could line everything up perfectly with the help of gravity. 15-heating-curtains-with-straightenerThen with the hemming tape sandwiched in between the liner and the curtain, I ran over it a few times with my straightener. The heat instantly bonded the fabrics, and I worked my way down all the sides of all 4 curtains. Yes. Time-consuming. But I put Netflix on and just got to work with this mindless task.

With the sides stitched up, I took the curtains off their clips and brought them down to do the bottom hem. This time I used a real iron.16-seam-ironOnce the hems were all done, I hung up my curtains and admired my handiwork.

My New Bedroom Curtains

21-master-bedroom-diy-blackout-ikea-curtainsNot bad for inexpensive window treatments. 20-hemmed-curtainsWhile doing the project I was a bit worried about the length, but they just kiss the floor and look perfect to me. 22-bedroom-curtains-augustaI love when they’re open and neatly folded on each side of the window. But they’re great when closed too. They definitely block the light!17-closed-bedroom-curtains

I’m also really happy with the curtain rod placement. The walls in here seem sooooo tall.

19-black-curtain-rod-ikea-curtains

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And for good measure…a nice little before & after.

1-bedroom-curtains-before21-master-bedroom-diy-blackout-ikea-curtainsWe’re getting there! The master bedroom is really starting to feel like ours. Only a few more items left on that to-do list, and then it’s onto the next space. casey_sig

P.S. Here’s a look at our finished master bedroom space. Come check out the big reveal right hereBedroom_before_after

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  • Erin

    you totally just blew my mind! flat iron! we could’ve used that idea a few years ago!! a lot safer than putting a iron on the floor!!! seriously i was texting my friend and tellig her about your no sew curtains and went GENIUSSSS!

    • hahaha who knew it would come in handy for a DIY project?!

  • Thank you for this tutorial! I’ve been wanting to make blackout curtains for awhile now. Do you recommend ceiling to floor curtains on half windows, too? Follow the same rules as “high and wide” even when the windows don’t go to the door?

    • Heather…great question! I would definitely suggest high & wide no matter the window. In fact, Bridget is currently adding curtains to her dining room and she has half windows there..and she is going high & wide! So you’ll have a good reference in a couple weeks when she blogs about it.

  • Ashley Sorrick

    Oh my goodness the curtains look amazing!! The room looks completely different – it is beautiful!

  • Your bedroom looks beautiful 🙂 It’s been great seeing the all progress you’ve made! Love how its turning out!

    • Thanks so much Ann. It’s coming together. I always think I haven’t done much, and then I see the before pictures and I’m reminded how far we’ve come.

  • What a difference the high and wide makes compared to the “before-Casey” photo. 🙂 It definitely looks better with the curtains being floor length instead of Urkel ones.

    • hahah Urkel ones. That is hilarious. I will now forever refer to them as that, Elise!

  • Lara Gephart

    Strange questions, BUT how wide are the doors? I have a gigantic picture window in my living room (130″ to be exact) and I’m struggling with finding curtains. I just bought the same rods from IKEA since they go up to 151″, but I just cannot settle on the curtains. I’m definitely going to need multiple panels, but do you connect them somehow or just leave them as is?

    • Lara,
      Great question. I did not connect the curtains together, instead I did 2 on each side so they look full and can spread evenly across the windows. Our doors measure at about 120 inches across, so I think 4 curtain panels would work perfectly for you at 130″.

      Hope that helps! Good luck!
      Casey

    • Lara Gephart

      It helps a ton! Thank you so, so much!

  • Big fan of hem tape, love that you used your straightener! Haha. They look great!!

    • This can’t-even-sew-on-a-button gal appreciates hem tape! Thanks Diana!

  • Vanessa….great question! Bridget just bought these for her dining room & called me from Ikea with the same concern, since they would be right next to her new (very white) board & batten. Personally, I kinda like the layered look of whites/creams/beiges. Kinda gives the room depth and more of a luxurious feel. But I can also see wanting them to match the trim, so a white-white would be a good idea for that. Totally personal preference!

    btw, Bridget went with the curtains…so you’ll be able to see her Ritva ones next to her white board & batten and then maybe you’ll have a better idea of what would work in your home!

  • Thanks for the tip Connie! I may have to do that someday.

  • Jess R

    Hi! Do you mind letting me know what the paint color is in this room? I love it!

  • Jules

    I love how they came out – great work! I looked up the curtain liners on Ikea’s site, and they only have the light grey color (http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/70291289/?query=glansnava) is that what you used? Or did you find white? I have white curtains, so would prefer to use a white liner. thanks!

    • I used the gray ones and they turned out perfectly (I don’t think they sell white ones). You can’t tell the difference when they’re behind the white curtains. Good luck with your project!

  • Jacilyn

    This may be a silly question, but on which side of the curtain did you attach the extra bottom material? The grey black-out side facing the wall, or in-between the panels?

    • Jacilyn,
      Do you mean the hem at the bottom of the curtains? If so, I did include the liner in the hem. So basically I secured the blackout to the curtain, and then hemmed the bottom of the curtain so it included the blackout material…if that makes any sense!

      Casey

  • Min S

    Hi!

    Just discovered your site and so glad I did!! I just bought some grommet curtains from Ikea and I love them. Didn’t realize they also sold blackout curtains (thanks for the info)!!

    2 questions:
    1) Will the blackout curtains you used also work on grommet curtains?
    2) From your pictures, it doesn’t seen the blackout curtains blocks the light coming in. I want things to be pitch black while I watch movies (putting these in the family room but also thinking about my bedroom)

    I appreciate your help since this is going to be my VERY FIRST DIY project 🙂

    • So happy you found us too!

      1. I’m not sure if Ikea sells blackout grommet curtains, but that would be your best bet to line ones that already have the grommet feature. I don’t think it would be easy to add if they weren’t the same.

      2. They definitely block out the light in the space. I wouldn’t say it makes the room “pitch black”, but it blocks light from coming through much better than any other curtains could. I can easily take naps during the day in that room, if that helps you at all!

      Good luck!

  • What an amazing idea!!! We just bought a house and need new window treatments in every room. I love this idea and can’t wait to give it a try!

    • Congratulations on the new house!! We’re so glad we could help. We LOVE our black-out curtains (especially for the price) and would definitely do this project again and again if we ever move.

  • Cherie Skrinski

    How did you make them look so nicely pleated with the rings? where did you clip the rings, its hard to tell in the photo you posted where you said you then clipped it to both the curtain and the liner. Did you use any curtain hooks?

    • I used the curtain rod ring to clip it to both the curtain & liner. On the Ikea ones, they have a little loop of fabric so I clipped both of those together (from curtain & liner), so the clip would be hidden behind the fabric. Hope that makes sense!