Pinch pleated drapes gather the top of the drapery fabric into identical three-pleat sets. This allows the drape to hang with a fullness and even shape that is formal and expensive looking. This style of drapery is usually mounted to a traverse style curtain rod that is fitted with an internal mechanism that moves the drapes across the rod using cords and gears. The drapery is attached to the curtain rod using drapery hooks.
Standard Drapery Pins
Standard drapery pins are an S shaped hook with one side of the S flattened and brought to a point. The pin is short and it is designed to work for any drapery with an interface or buckram header. The pin's point grabs the buckram and the flattened S pinches the buckram while the other hook side is pointing backward in position to attach to the curtain rod system. This short pin is adjusted by installing the pin within the top 4 to 5 inches of the drapery. By moving the pin upward or downward, the drapery is shifted up or down as well.
Prong-style pins come in two lengths: long and short neck. A prong-style pin is designed to work with a specific style of buckram header material that has pockets. The prongs slide into the pockets to create the pinch-pleating style. Because the prong-style pin is actually part of the pleat creation process, you cannot move the pin up or down to adjust the length of the drape. For this reason a short neck style is available. This allows you to select the adjustment height of the hook that best works in your application while still using the prong-style features.
Using a Standard Drapery Pin
A drapery panel with sewn pinch pleats is the style of drapery that uses standard drapery pins. Measure the distance from the slide hole inside the curtain rod to the floor. The slide is a small white plastic piece that slides inside the curtain rod. Measure your drapery panel from the bottom edge to your measurement. Make a mark on the drape. Make a second measurement from the mark to the top of the drape. This is your hook height. Turn the panel face side down. Slide the drapery pin into the centre of the pleat area. The point of the pin enters the back of the fabric and slides upward toward the top of the drape. The top of the hook should measure to your hook height. Repeat for each pleat.
Using Prong-style Pins
Place your panel face down. Fan out your prong. Slide the leftmost prong into the leftmost pocket. Each pocket should be about 1 1/2 inches apart. Slide each of the four prongs into the adjacent pockets. Push all four upward to make three pinch pleats on the other side of the drape. Repeat for each set of pockets. Hang your drapes by placing the first pin in the master cylinder arm hole. This is a metal arm emerging from a plastic box in the curtain rod. The second hook goes in the third hole. The third hook goes in the first plastic slide. The second to last hook goes in the front bracket hole. The last hook goes into the side bracket hole. All remaining hooks go in adjacent slides between the cylinder and the bracket. This applies to any kind of drapery pin.