It's easy to save money doing alterations on your home decorator items. Shortening straight curtains or a tablecloth is a simple process that will give your room a custom made look, because these accessories will now actually fit your windows or furniture.
Today I will show the steps to shortening a tablecloth. You can use these photos to help you shorten any straight edged piece of cloth, including window curtains, valances, bed skirts. If you're nervous about tackling this, start simple, with an old sheet or dishtowel.
The first thing I do is mark the new hemline, then fold this amount on the curtain, wrong sides together. In this example, the customer has requested I shorten this curtain 5¾". Press this new hem into place.
My rule of thumb is to put things back the way I found them! So here, I measure the existing hem so that I can put the new hem in exactly as I see the old one. In this case it is ½" deep. I often take pictures to help me remember.
Now I have opened the curtain back up and I use wax chalk to mark the hem allowance. This is usually the amount of hem showing (see previous picture) times two. In this case, it is ½" x 2 for a total of 1".
Cut at this line.
Time to fold this new 1" hem allowance in half. I just bring the cut edge up to meet the pressed line.
Now I press this new edge down flat, being careful to keep my iron away from the pressed edge that is already there. My project looks like this:
Well, if you're thinking this process is a lot more time at the ironing board than at the sewing machine, you're on the right track. I press again, this time folding the hem allowance up twice, on each of the pressed lines I have already creased, making a "double thick" hem.
Time to stitch close to the fold, and I'm finished!