A little steaming and "fluffing" are in order. Otherwise they are complete.
One of the reasons that I started this blog was to journal about my experiences in redecorating my home with budget in mind. I have found that one of the best ways to keep costs down is to re-use items that I already own. For my guest room/office, I turned an old kitchen table into a desk, made a wall-arrangement from items that I already owned, and separated a set of nesting tables to use as bedside stands. While I still have plans for that room, more recently, I have been devoting time to updating my dining room. Last week I shared a few of my plans for that room. Read about it here. With painting and upholstering accomplished, it was time to move on to the windows.
The wood blinds that were on the windows were fine for privacy, but weren't doing anything to add warmth to the room. Some curtain panels were in order. My first instinct was to run out and buy new panels. I love the green apple color of these panels from Ballard Designs , but two panels would cost $346.00. After shipping and tax, chances are that I would have to pay close to $375 for the panels.:
Being the recessionista that I am, I decided to use a set of inexpensive champagne colored panels that I already owned and embellish them with ribbon for a new look. While I love the green apple color, I ultimately decided to use black ribbon to coordinate with the black stripes on my dining room chairs. The room will have a neutral background and I will be able to add color with art and accessories.
This was a surprisingly quick and easy project. I purchased 5 rolls of 1 1/2 inch wide black ribbon and two spools of Stitch Witchery, an iron-on fusible tape, from Michaels. The ribbon was on sale for $2.50/roll. With supplies in hand, I was ready to begin.
Since I had never attempted this project before, I chose a simple design based on a Greek key pattern. Using the hems of the panels as a guide, I rolled out two lengths of ribbon, ending at the stitching of the bottom hem. I added an addition two inches to the top so that I could wrap the ribbon around the top edge of the panel. The squares were created by cutting four 7 inch pieces of ribbon and one longer length to connect the squares.
Ribbon was measured and cut to form the desired pattern.
To assure that my ribbon would lay perfectly vertical, starting at the top of the panel I measured 5 1/2 inches in from the edge of the panel and pinned the ribbon at this point. Moving down the length of the panel, I continued measuring every 5 1/2 inches and pinning the ribbon until I came to the end.
With the length of ribbon in place, I formed three sides of the square at the bottom by using the side and bottom stitching as a guide. (The final side of the squares would be the horizontal piece of ribbon that would connect the two squares. This is the last length of ribbon that should be added.) I made a miter at each of the corners by folding the ribbon under on a diagonal and ironing them in place before pinning.
Once the first side was complete, I repeated the steps for the second side of the panel.
The final length of ribbon was added by positioning it horizontally across the bottom of the panel to complete the squares. Mitered corners were formed and ironed in place before pinning and adhering the ribbon to the panels.
This project could be accomplished by stitching the ribbon in place. However, keep in mind that if your panels are lined and inner-lined, this may prove a bit challenging. In total, I used about 15 yards of ribbon to complete both panels. Since I already owned the panels and the ribbon was on sale, the total cost for this project was about $15. Sure beats the $375 I would have paid for the panels from Ballard Designs.
If you have a set of panels that you are planning to ditch, consider adding a little embellishment. Ribbon is available in a variety of widths, colors and patterns at fabric and craft stores. Here are a few ideas to consider:
A simple ribbon trim in the color of your choice on both the leading and outside edge of a panel could be added in a matter of an hour to create a look similar to these panels from Pottery Barn.
Adding a vertical pattern with ribbon gives the illusion of height to your room:
Image from DIY Ideas
Create horizontal stripes of one or more colors of ribbon to a solid color panel to get a look similar to this:
Image from curtainfabricsonline.com
Even a patterned panel would benefit from a shot of color. Imagine adding a band of bright yellow or teal to a black and white panel.