Instructions for Pinch Pleat Curtains

Updated February 21, 2017

Pinch pleat curtains usually appear a little more full than standard panel curtains. Pinch pleat drapes have sections of gathered pleats at the header, which give them their fullness. While it might appear difficult to make pinch pleat curtains, the job is made less complicated when pleat tape is used to form the pleats. When hanging pinch pleat drapes, you must use drapery hooks because you cannot sew a basic rod pocket into the drapes.

Measure the windows to determine how much fabric will be required for the pinch pleat drapes. Measure the entire width of the window and the length from the rod down to where you want the curtains to hang. Add 6 inches to the length to allow for hemming.

Obtain the fabric and cut it to the measurements.

Hem the bottom and sides by folding the fabric under. Use pins to hold the fabric in place while sewing.

Work on one drapery panel at a time by placing the wrong side up on a flat surface. Fold down the top edge of your curtain 4 inches to give the fabric more body and support for the pleats.

Read the directions for the pleat tape because some of the directions can vary. Cut a length of pleat tape that is the same width as the curtain. Pin the pleat tape to the back of the curtain 2 inches down from the top edge.

Sew the pleat tape in place using thread that matches the curtain fabric.

Pull the cords of the pleat tape gently to form the pleats in your curtains. Tie the ends of the cords together to hold everything in place.

Sew just the ends of the curtains along the edge of the pleat tape to hold the pulled cords and pleats in place.


Pleat tape comes in different varieties and sizes of pleats. It is a matter of personal preference which type is used. Heavy fabrics work better when working with pleat tape. You might find that you will want to add a lining if you do use a light to medium fabric.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Fabric
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Pleat tape
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author