Comparing the Cost of DIY Curtains and non-DIY Curtains

Easily the best feature of my new room is the insane amount of windows I have. On the other hand, having an insane amount of windows is not so great when you’re trying to sleep.

When I moved in, there were plastic blinds on half of the windows and the ones that were left looked like junk. My friend that lived here before me tacked blankets up to keep the light out. I knew I was going to go in a different direction and wanted something pretty. Something that would block out the light when I wanted and let light in when I wanted.

Comparing the Cost of DIY Curtains and non-DIY Curtains | Windows Before

As I’m sure you know, curtains are freaking expensive, especially when you have a bunch of really big windows. So, I made curtains out of sheets which was an idea I had seen from a few different bloggers on Pinterest. In this post I’ll show you the materials I used and their cost so you can weigh the pros/cons of doing a similar project.

My Window Dimensions

In my room I have 3 windows that are all 70 inches by 70 inches. Therefore, I needed 6 curtain panels that were at least 35 inches wide and 70 inches long. Obviously, these dimensions would cover the window but the length would not look great.

Ideally, curtains are hung at least 3 inches above the window. Personally, I like the curtains to touch the floor but not pool too much. To make sure I got sheets that were long enough, I measured from the top of the window to the floor and added three inches.

Curtain Materials

After searching around a little bit for different sheets I decided on the Mainstays 200 Thread Count Sheet in twin size. They had the best color option at the cheapest price so it was an easy decision. I used both a solid and patterned sheet to make the curtains thicker as well as reversible. I chose navy for the solid color and the blue diamond ikat pattern.

These sheets are $4.97 each and I needed 12  (6 patterned, 6 solid) for a total of $59.64. Each sheet is 66 inches wide by 96 inches long. In a different room I think one sheet would have been fine, but I wanted to block out a lot of light in my bedroom.

Below is an example of how much light 1 sheet (left) blocks versus 2 (right).

Comparing the Cost of DIY Curtains and non-DIY Curtains | 1 sheet versus 2

Cost of DIY Curtains (Fabric) and Pre-Made Curtains

I thought I was shelling out a decent amount of money for these curtains, so I was interested to see how much more I would have spent to buy fabric or just straight up buy curtains and achieve a similar look.

If I would have bought fabric from JoAnn’s:

  • Lining Fabric (54″ wide) – $3/yd (on sale) x 16 yds (to match 96″ length)= $48 (not on sale = $96)

  • Print Fabric (54″ wide) – $4.50/yd (on sale) x 16 yds = $72 (not on sale = $144)

The total price for just fabric would have been $120 on sale, $240 not on sale!

I found a pretty good deal at JCPenney on 50″ x 95″ back tab curtains for $13.99 each (clearance) times 6 panels for a total of $83.94. These aren’t that much more expensive, but the user reviews mention these curtains are not the best at blocking light.

Curtain Hardware

In all honesty, I didn’t want to do a whole lot of work besides hanging the curtains up so I didn’t get all fancy and make back tabs or put in grommets or anything. Instead, I just bought clip rings in oil rubbed bronze. There are 7 rings in each package, each package costs $4.74 and I bought 5 packages for a total of $23.70. I ended up using 5 rings on each panel so I still had 5 left over.

Last but not least I got curtain rods from Home Depot, also in oil rubbed bronze, for $6.97 x 3 for a total of $20.91. They’re 48 – 84 inches long and 7/16 in. thick.  I was trying to get the cheapest option possible, but aesthetically I think a thicker curtain rod would be better.

Total Cost Breakdown

here is an overview of the items I bought and their costs:

  • 12 twin sheets x $4.97 each = $59.64
  • 5 packages of (7) curtain rings x $4.74 each = $23.70
  • 3 curtain rods x $6.97 each = $20.91

Bringing the total cost of curtains and hardware (without tax) to $104.25

Comparing the Cost of DIY Curtains and non-DIY Curtains | Curtain Pattern

I absolutely love the way these curtains turned out and I think they add a lot of style and function to the room (but hey, I may be a little biased). I know in my next apartment I won’t be using all of the panels but I think it was a great investment compared to buying pre-made curtains.

What do you think? Would you try sheet curtains, DIY curtains out of fabric, or just buy curtains? I would love to hear your pro/con list!

See You Around!

Lauren <3

Comparing the Cost of DIY Curtains and non-DIY Curtains

5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas

I have been gawking over beautiful china cabinets recently, but new china cabinets are outrageously expensive and my house has limited options of where I can even put one. I did some searching on Pinterest and came up with a list of 5 creative china cabinet ideas.

5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Unique ways to display china and glass

Buy a Thrifted Cabinet

The most common approach I have seen is finding a cabinet on Craigslist, at yard sales, or Goodwill/Salvation army. This is a great approach because you can find a typical cabinet, and upgrade it to your needs. Some people restore the hutch to its original glory or even restyle it to something completely different.

5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Thrift an old china hutch

Here is an example using General Finishes Java Gel Stain. General Finishes is a really popular brand right now that I have seen a lot of people use for furniture makeovers. This technique changes the look completely while still keeping the beauty of the wood.

5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Thrift an old china hutch 5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Thrift an old china hutch

This is one of my absolute favorite painted hutch makeovers. I also really love the details of the hutch itself. The transformation from before is crazy!

Upcycle a Bookshelf

I would love to restyle a thrifted hutch, but I am just having a hard time finding a cabinet that’s the right style and price. Soon I might try following this idea of taking a plain bookshelf and adding molding and legs to it. It might even be simple enough to add glass doors to it too.

5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Upcycle a bookshelf 5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Upcycle a bookshelf

I’m sure it would be way easier to get my hands on an old bookshelf, not to mention how much easier it would be to transport. This would also be a good fit since I don’t have a ton of space in my house for a huge cabinet.

Use Picture Shelves

This is another great option if you have limited floor space, but need some more decorations up on the wall. This would be great above my table in the “dining room”.

5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Use picture shelves

This would also be a great option because if you upgrade to a hutch the shelves can easily be used for something else… Maybe as a picture display? 😉

Wood Crates

Another particularly unique idea I came across was hanging wood crates and displaying dishes in them.

5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Use Crates

I love the rustic vibe this gives off, and I think the possibilities are endless. You could paint the crates, stain them different colors and arrange them in different ways to get a different look. These crates could also be reused if you upgrade to something different.

Old Windows

This last idea is particularly creative. Use old windows and reclaimed wood to make a cabinet for your dishes.

5 Creative China Cabinet Ideas | Upcycle windows and reclaimed wood

This idea is really customizable too. The picture is linked to a post on how to use old windows, and it didn’t have a link to the original project for this. This cabinet could also be made in different sizes depending on the old windows you can find.

Would you try any of these ideas? If so, which ones? Can you think of any other creative china cabinet ideas?

If you’re interested in learning more about the specific projects all the photos are linked to the source where I found them.

See You Around!

Lauren <3

P.S. if you liked this post, or thought it was helpful, don’t forget to share it! 🙂