How to make -
Hand Pleated Interlined Curtains
  •   Sewing Machine
  • - Tape Measure
  • - Needles
  • - Pins
  • - Scissors
  • - Set Square
  • - Straight Edge
  •   Pencil
  • - Vanishing Marker
  • - Clamps
  • Step 1: Measure the Window

    Fix your curtain pole or track in position.

    • Measure Pole length - the length of the track or pole excluding finials or end caps.
    • Decide on where you want the curtain to finish - eg whether to the sill, to the floor or over long etc.
    • Measure the Hook Drop
      - The distance from the curtain ring eye where the curtain hook attaches to the pole down to where the curtain length will finish.
    • Measure Hook to Top - The distance from the curtain ring eye up to where you want the top of the curtain to finish.*


    Most people instinctively think you should cover the pole or track with the curtain, however choosing a high hook to top measurement can cause the curtain to hit the pole/track when stacking back, pushing the curtain forward between the pleats when the curtains are opened.

    High Hook to Top - Curtain covering pole or track, but curtain not stacking back properly.
    Lower Hook to Top - Enabling Curtain to stack back properly.

    Some people like their curtains to stack forward especially if you are covering a track but your pleat spaces need to be proportionate to you pleats otherwise they will stick forward too much.

    Questions & Comments


    My pole length is 220 and my fabric width 152cm however my lining measures 10cm less in width and the calculation for curtain ratio of 2.2 is three widths so one and a half per curtain. What should I do please? I am really finding the videos helpful.


    Just doing the calculations and 1.5 widths per curtain is way too little and not 2.2 fullness….

    220cm x 2.2 = 484. Add in 10% for ease and overlap = 506cm divided by fabric width = 3.3 widths.

    You definitely need 2 widths of lining per curtain and 4 drops for the face fabric cut down to required fullness ratio.

    You will need to work out your pleat and spaces first (they can be whatever you want) and then work out how wide your joined fabric panels need to be cut down too. Don’t forget to cut down the panels on the outside edges.

    Good luck. Please follow our Instagram Dolman and Taylor to check out what we’re making in the workshop.

    Kind regards



    I have a long ceiling fixed track and the ceiling is a bit wobbly so there's light shining through the gap. Will the curtains look right if I measure from the ceiling?


    I have just measured the drop for the curtains that I’m making. There is 1.5 cm difference from from one end to the other due to the floor level. Would you adjust the length across the pair of curtains, or make at the lesser drop and adjust with the hooks when hanging? (On a track)

    I will have some give as the heading will be covered by a padded pelmet board.


    We would not adjust the length across the pair. We would go for an average of the two lengths or make them over long by 2cm (depending on your preference).

    Rachel Hamilton

    I am putting up a new pole, i am unsure how much the pole should extend past the window and if that should also include the architrave. is there a rule of thumb? I assume it depends also on the width of the window - ours is 142cm or 166cm including architrave.


    For windows that size we would look to extend the pole 20-30cm either side. Poles tend to come in standard sizes, 180cm, 220cm. You will probably just get away with a 180cm pole for the 142cm window. We'd make the second window proportionate.

    Generally when you go up a pole size you need more fabric widths.


    I am making curtains and the pole is not fitted yet. How do I calculate the hem? I have the height the pole will be fitted at and the diameter of pole and rings. Can I calculate it from this?


    We would always wait for the pole to go up then measure and make. (it's far simpler)

    The Hem is at the bottom so is just dependent on the length of the curtain. 20cm allowance full length, 16cm allowance sill length.

    However I think you are asking about the allowance for the top. You could estimate the hook drop then add on extra amount to take into acount any error, then calculate fabric etc as per the instructions. You could then make the curtains up to heading stage, then finish them off to the correct length when you have the pole up and have measured the actual hook drop.

    Note: Making the curtains to an estimated length then trying to hang the pole at the correct height is difficult to get right.

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