While store-bought curtains are available in a wide variety of colors and lengths, finding a style you like in an affordable price range may be a bit frustrating. Instead of settling for curtains that don't quite match the room's decor, make your own by repurposing other materials. In some cases, no sewing is required.
Tea towels and dish towels, including vintage versions with hand-embroidered embellishments, serve as unusual and yet appropriate cafe-style curtains, especially over a kitchen window. One or two tea towels or dishcloths, depending on the width of the window, serve as the curtains. Curtain ring clips hung from the curtain rod hold the linens in place. Patterned or solid-color linens featuring colors found in the room mesh with the room's decor, or select vintage or linens featuring images such as roosters for a retro vibe.
Shhh, It's a Sheet
Nice bed sheets, such as a set that doesn't quite fit the twin bed you bought if for, turn into curtains with just a little work. The flat sheet is practically a ready-made curtain; just fold over the top edge to create a pocket for a curtain rod, securing it by stitching or by using iron-on fusible webbing. For a tab-top curtain, cut strips of material from the pillowcase or fitted sheet out of the same set, folding and ironing the edges to create a crisp edge. Sew or fuse the the material to create the tab, then fold it into a loop and stitch or fuse it to the sheet curtain. Superhero, princess or animal sheets suit a young child's room, while striped or solid sheets can be used virtually anywhere.
Burlap coffee bean sacks, printed with type of beans and their origin, serve as earthy and unusual curtains fitting for virtually any room, but perhaps most at home in a kitchen or dining room. Hang one or two sacks as-is from curtain rod clips for a simple curtain, or stitch several sacks together to create longer curtain panels for a lengthy window. Flour or rice sacks can be used in place of coffee sacks for a different look. For an international vibe, use rice sacks from an Asian grocery featuring colorful artwork or lettering.
Beautifully tinted or patterned silk scarves, shawls, sari cloth and wraps add bold international flavor to a room's decor, enhancing a room with eclectic or bohemian vibe. Hang a series of narrow scarves lengthwise from curtain rod clips to create interesting curtain panels, or use a series of scarves, each a different color, to create a lush window covering that ripples when panels are pushed into open position. Narrow scarves can also be stitched together to create a patchwork-style curtain panel.