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How to make curtains for cupboards

Updated February 21, 2017

In days before built-in kitchen cupboards, women fashioned curtains from flour sacks and fabric to hide dishes, canned goods and the general array of kitchen goods from plain view. Today, curtains add a charming touch of yesteryear to kitchen cupboards. Curtains can be created in fabric of your choice or from vintage linens or tablecloths. Vintage trims can be used to embellish the fabric, or the curtains can be left plain and functional as in days gone by. With a sewing machine and selected fabric, your kitchen can have vintage charm as well as functioning curtains on your cupboards.

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  1. Measure each cupboard and purchase appropriate-sized tension rod(s).

  2. Select the fabric.

  3. Cut fabric 4 inches longer than desired length and double the cupboard width. Do this for each cupboard.

  4. Hem, using a ½-inch seam allowance on all edges of the curtains.

  5. Cut in half lengthwise.

  6. Hem these two new raw edges. You now have two curtains for one cupboard tension rod.

  7. Fold the top (either end at this point) over 2 inches, and sew, forming a casing for the tension rod.

  8. Slip two curtains per cupboard onto the tension rod.

  9. Install the tension rod.

  10. Place cup hook beneath each tension rod for reinforcement.

  11. Tip

    Ties can be fashioned out of fabric scraps if desired. Measure 4 inches wide by the length from the cupboard to where you desire the tie. If you have a home drill, drilling slight indentions into the cupboard wood where the tension rod will go can give the rod extra durability and prevent slippage when the cupboard curtain is pulled on. Using vintage fabrics, flour sacks, old dishtowels or tea towels, vintage tablecloths or vintage curtains can add a bit of charm. Flat sheets can be an inexpensive way to provide a lot of fabric for many cupboards. Check the clearance section of your local discount store for several of the same flat sheets. Fullness of the cupboard curtains can be decreased or increased according to taste. Creating the cupboard curtains and window curtains from the same fabric is a nice touch.


    Remember, if you have small children, you cannot childproof a curtain on a cupboard like you can a cupboard door. Wait until your child is older before replacing cupboard doors with curtains to areas where she may ingest harmful substances.

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Things You'll Need

  • Tension rod
  • Fabric measured 4-inches longer than desired length x double cupboard width for each cupboard
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Straight pins
  • Tape measure
  • Cup hooks

About the Author

Louise Harding holds a B.A. in English language arts and is a licensed teacher. Harding is a professional fiction writer. She is mother to four children, two adopted internationally, and has had small businesses involving sewing and crafting for children and the home. Harding's frugal domestic skills help readers save money around the home.

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