• - Fabric
  • - Lining
  • - Thread
  • - Buckram
  • - Wadding
  • - Weights
  • - Curtain Hooks
  • Tools
  • - Sewing Machine
  • - Needles
  • - Pins
  • - Clamps
  • - Scissors
  • - Set Square
  • - Straight Edge
  • - Invisible Marker
  • Step 4: Calculate Lining Quantity
    Printable Worksheet
    Printable Worksheet

    The calculation for the amount of lining required to make a pair of curtains is the same as the calculation for plain fabric, except when calculating the cut drop the hem allowance will be 16cm for floor length curtains and 12cm for sill length curtains....Note


    To calculate the Lining Cut Drop:

    * We also add a 5cm trimming allowance to enable us to straighten the ends of the cut lengths


    To calculate the amount of lining required to make a pair of curtains:

    • Multiply the "Number of fabric widths" by Lining Cut Drop

    Alternatively try our online calculator.

    Extra Help & Comments

    Sew Helpful
    Post your questions and comments here, we will reply so everyone can see the answer.
    Annabel Smith
    Hi thanks for your very helpful tutorial. I am making my curtains on a home sewing machine, and am pretty certain it wont cope with the thickness of two layers of buckram plus six layers of fabric at the header when sewing the pleats together. Can I use less fabric at the top, or is it pointless to try making curtains on a non-industrial machine?
    Sew Helpful
    You cant use less fabric at the top. 

    Make up a test piece with the approriate layers and see if your machine will sew through it. You tend to need a relavitevlly powerful machine with a thicker needle but not necessarily an industrial. On a lined curtain you may find your machine can cope.
    Annabel Smith
    Thanks for the tip. I will see how that goes. The main problem on my Janome is that I can't adjust the foot pressure for thicker fabrics and also the thread always breaks for thick, coarse fabric (eg. buckram) no matter what needle size/thread thickness I use. Could I use interfacing instead of buckram? The curtains won't be that heavy as they are only 1m long, its just at the overlap that they might sag a bit.
    Sew Helpful
    Some buckrams are stiffer than others. 

    We cant advise about using interfacing as we have only ever made curatins the proper way with buckram so dont know if that would work.


    Your pleat calculator is giving me a finished measurement that uses more fabric than I have (fabric 278) finished width (178 actual is 168 but I've included 10cm spring back)
    Am I doing something wrong?
    Sew Helpful
    I'm not quite sure what you mean as the question lacks a bit of detail. Could you show the figures here you are putting in and getting out and why you think they are wrong.

    With the CURTAIN PLEAT CALCULATOR  you enter the width of the panel you have to pleat, the width you want the curtain to be when pleated (finished width) and the width of the Leading edge and Return (left end and right end). Any ease (which I assume is  what you mean by springback) or overlap is included  in the finished width value you enter. We include ease and overlap in STEP 2 of the tutorial when we calculate the finished width of the curtain.

    Then the calculator tells you the pleat size and gap size for a given number of pleats. Remember there will be one less gap than pleat (see the diagram opposite the calcualtor).

    IF you are talking about using the PATTERN MATCH PLEAT CALCULATOR then not all fabrics are suitable to pleat to pattern match and you can get some strange results.

    how do I calculate material width required when using double pleat heading tape
    Sew Helpful
    I'm sorry we dont use double pleat heading tape so can't help. 
    Jo Long
    I'm a little confused as I have just cut out my fabric as per instructions but then noticed that the written instructions appear to be different to the instructions in the tutorial for the drop of the lining. The tutorial adds a further 5 cm in addition to the 5cm trimming allowance to thr lining length. Could you clarify please.
    Jo Long
    In the video tutorial of cutting the lining your demonstrator refers to an extra 5cm in addition to the header, hem and trimming allowance when measuring the lining material but this is not mentioned in the written instructions. I had not allowed this extra 5 cm when cutting out the fabric - which is correct please.
    Sew Helpful
    There is only a 5cm trimming allowance no extra 5cm on top of that. 

     The video shows the finished curtain length is  Hook to top plus hook drop, the heading allowance is buckram depth plus 5cm and the hem allowance is a double 8cm and adds a 5cm trimming allowance.  

    Looking at the written instructions I can see the old figure for the heading allowance of buckram height plus 2cm rather than buckram height plus 5cm is there. I will adjust the written instructions. You will have enough fabric and lining if you have used buckram  plus 2cm (plus there will be some extra from the trimming allowance).  Please check your email.
    sheila sharkey
    have just received a pair of curtains from a "professional" curtain maker. It is claimed the lining must have extra pleats - I have had many curtains made and not have this overkill feature. could you confirm it is not correct?
    Sew Helpful
    I'm sorry we dont get involved in disputes.
    my buckram headed, double width curtain panels are ready to be pleated. I can work out how many pleats and spaces i need, I know how much allowance I need for my returns and overlaps, but how much allowance should I include for 'SPRING-BACK' per width? many thanks
    Sew Helpful
    This is covered in STEP 2 when you calculate your FINISHED CURTAIN WIDTH, you add in an allowance for ease and overlap.
    Karen Williams
    I am a little confused by the finished curtain width. I have added the extra 8cm in step 2, but then in step 3 you say to multiply the pole width by the fullness ratio.
    Do you mean that I should multiply the finished curtain width by 2 to arrive at an "adjusted " pole width - i.e. taking into account the extra amount for overlap and ease. It can make quite a big difference to the amount of material if you need to round up. Thanks
    Sew Helpful
    You are looking for a number of widths to use, we have always used pole width at the this stage to calculate as the fullness ratio used takes into account the excess fabric used for the pleats and ovelap. 

    It is always better not to skmip and not go for a low fullness ratio.

    It is a good point you raise though we will have a discussion in the workroom and see if we need to adjust the instructions.

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