Pinterest Project: Painting Curtains

Hi all!

As promised, I give you my tutorial on painting curtains. It includes the good, the bad, and the not exactly as shown in the thing I pinned on pinterest.

Our kitchen is primarily blue and white. LOTS of blue and white. So when I stare at our bright white curtains, it’s just too much. This is why I decided to take matters into my own hands. I found this on a fellow blogger’s site and LOVED the way her curtains turned out. I hemmed and hawed about what color to choose for my stripes, whether I should do a straight stripe or a chevron, and made my decisions. Plus, push comes to shove, the curtains were really cheap from IKEA (remember my obsession with IKEA?) and we’ve had them for three years. Could be tossed and replaced if this all didn’t work out.

So I went out to one of my other favorite places, Lowes, found my supplies and prepared myself. I got all the necessary items (foam brush, roller brush, paint for stripe, painters tape). I had to make a quick run to Joann’s Fabric for the textile medium, but I was happy to find that it was only 99 cents for a tube! I began planning out the stripes that evening. My curtain panels are very long, about 100 inches, so I needed a big work area.

Prepping the curtains, taping the stripes.

This is a REALLY important part of the process. You need to make sure that your tape is ABSOLUTELY flat against the curtains. Also, because you’re doing stripes, you need to make sure that your stripes are even and straight. Sadly, my travel sized tape measurer is MIA, so as you can see, I used a wrench. This actually worked out nicely because I was able to put it in between the tape lines to make sure that it was equal widths. This is a bit time consuming, so be prepared. But you also want to make sure that you do it just right or you’ll end up with some bumps in the final process (like me).

Stripes all taped out!

The second panel takes significantly less time because you really get into a groove. Also, if you trust yourself enough, you can lay your second panel over the first and use it to tape the second panel. This way it’s like a quick template. Once you finish the taping process, it’s time to paint!

Painting the stripes.

Painting away…

Make sure to put some sort of tarp or covering under you curtains while you paint. It will bleed through in spots and you don’t want paint on your floor. Because it’s heavy paint not necessarily used for textile, add the textile medium and mix. I got a quart of paint and used about 3/4s of my 3 oz. tube of textile medium. Paint carefully, starting from the tape and going inward to the middle of the stripe. This will help stop any bleeding or getting paint under your tape. Just keep painting, just keep painting. One thing I didn’t think about, and realized only after, was that I may have to do this with TWO coats, instead of just one. After one coat finished and dried, it looked good on the floor but hung up the light shined right through. So back down to the floor they went and more painting commenced.

After one coat, waiting for a second.


Then, after they’re sort of dry, I moved them outside to the porch to dry in the HOT HOT HOT heat. It’s like a natural dryer.


My neighbors probably love me.

And, once dry, the pay-off. They look great in the window and I love them from afar…but I loath them up close. As I said before, be VERY VERY careful when taping off your stripes. I must have had a few wobbles in my tape because I do have some random ridges and blobs. Not to mention a friendly-four legged friend WALKED on the wet curtains while they were drying. I tried my best to corner off the floor around the curtains, but he’s a clever little guy. And now he has tan paw pads.

Finished product.

Either way, I think they look pretty cool when you aren’t judging them up close. The stripes are really crisp khaki color against the white and I love how it goes with our blue walls. I’m just disappointed it’s not perfect up close. I wish I really double, triple, quadruple checked my tape lines to make sure I didn’t have any weird spots. But, these babies are staying at least for the short-term, so I’m going to try and figure out how to get it a bit more perfect (maybe a bleach pen? any other suggestions?).

And for those wondering, here’s the price break-down:

Curtains- $30 from IKEA

Paint- $2.50 for a quart. It was in the unwanted paint section so it was $15 dollars off.

Foam brush- $4 for a pair

Roller cover- $3 (already had the roller base)

Textile medium- $0.99

Painter’s tape- $2.50

So really, I get what I pay for? Curtains from a store like West Elm, Pottery Barn, or Crate and Barrel are an arm and a leg. These just needed several hours of my time and about $40. Maybe I should stop complaining about the imperfect spots…


So? What do you think?







5 thoughts on “Pinterest Project: Painting Curtains

  1. The curtains look good! Sorry to hear you didn’t have good luck with getting a finished edge – I ironed my curtains really well, then ran a lent roller over them to get off all unwanted debri/lent and then taped off the stripes. Definitely make sure you use a foam brush for the edges next to the tape and paint into the stripe so that you aren’t pushing access paint under the tape.

    I think they turned out great and you make a good point, you definitely pay for what you get 😉

    • Thanks Elizabeth! I loved your curtains so much. I think the ironing is where I messed up. The tiny ridges I may have missed when taping wouldn’t have existed if I had taken a little extra time. Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Pingback: A Little Love {For Young House Love} | Mid-Century Mod Podge

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