Wednesday, April 1, 2015

DIY Painted Striped Curtains

So.  I have been searching high and low and everywhere in between for some black and white horizontal striped curtains.  For months.  MONTHS, y’all.  You’d think they would be super simple to find.  That’s what Google’s for, right?  Nope.  I’m here to tell you that they do not exist.  The only ones I could find were a pair of panels on (you can find them here), but they only have 2 black stripes and 3 white stripes, and I had envisioned a lot more stripes than that.   

After months and months of searching, I gave up and decided to make my own.  Unfortunately, I’m not a seamstress (I can barely sew a button on a shirt) so I decided to try and paint some.  Pretty bold considering I’ve never attempted to paint any fabric before, aside from puff painting some t-shirts and hair bow back in the 90’s.  Y’all remember puff paint, right?! 

Anyway, without further ado, I present to you the perfect black and white striped curtains... and they weren't all that hard to make!  You can make your own in just 10 easy steps.

I found the perfect white panels here for only $42.99 for the pair.  And I bought the longer 95 inch panels (floor to ceiling) instead of the standard 84 inch panels (floor to top of window), so if you want the standard panels, they are only $35.99 for the pair.  Score!   

Photo Source:
I also stumbled upon this cool stuff called Textile Medium when I was researching what types of paint to use on fabric, and it actually turns any acrylic paint into washable fabric paint.    

Here are the supplies that I used to paint two 95 inch curtain panels:

  • 2 – 95 inch white curtain panels from
  • 2 – 8 oz. bottles of Delta Ceramcoat Textile Medium (I purchased mine from Joann Fabric, but you can find it here if you heart Amazon as much as I do and want to shop online.)
  • 4 – 8 oz. bottles of Delta acrylic paint in black (I also purchased from Joann.)
  • Painter’s tape
  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil
  • Small paint tray and roller
  • Drop cloth to protect the ground 

Step 1 – Iron Your Panels

I ironed both of my panels before painting them so I could have a nice, flat, wrinkle free surface to work with.  If you’re anything like me, you may be overly excited to get started on the actual painting and want to skip this step, but trust me, you’ll be glad you didn’t once you start rolling on that paint. 

Step 2 – Prepare Your Work Space 

Lay out the drop cloth to protect the ground, and then lay the curtain panel on the drop cloth.  My drop cloth was only wide enough to paint one curtain at a time so that’s exactly what I did.  Note, I taped the edges of the drop cloth and the edges of the curtain panel to the ground because there was a slight breeze and I didn’t want the wind to catch them and ruin my freshly painted curtains!   

Step 3 – Decide How You Want Your Curtain Panels to Look 

What do you want your stripes to look like?  Thick?  Thin?  White at the top? Black at the top?  I knew I wanted a black stripe at the top (excluding the very top thin strip containing the grommets), and a black stripe at the bottom, and I wanted all of the stripes to be pretty thick, so I decided to go with a total of seven stripes – four black, and three white all the same size.  

After making these important decisions, it is time to do the math (Did somebody say math? Zzzz.) so you know how thick each stripe needs to be:  
95 inches (total panel length) - 5 inches (for the strip containing the grommets) = 90 inches (total curtain to measure for the stripes) 
90 inches divided by 7 stripes comes to 12.857142 inches per stripe (of course it couldn’t just be a nice even number), so I rounded down to 12.5 inches for each stripe, which means that the bottom stripe will be slightly thicker than the others.  I worried about this a little, but it is not very noticeable to the naked eye, I promise. 

Step 4 – Measure, Measure, Measure 

Now you know that each stripe will be 12.5 inches wide, so it’s time to pull out your handy dandy tape measure and mark each stripe.  I made a small tick mark with my pencil at each 12.5 inch increment down one side of the panel, and then I did the exact same thing down the other side of the panel. 

Once I had my tick marks down both sides of the panel, I used the tape measure (you could use a 2x4 or any other long straight edge) to draw a straight line between the tick marks on each side of the panel. 

Step 5 – Tape Your Stripes 

Next, you will need to tape your stripes.  *Be sure to tape outside the lines for the painted stripes.*  This will result in every other stripe looking thinner while your tape is down.  This picture below better explains it as it’s hard to put into words.

Also, please note that if you run out of painter’s tape, regular masking tape will work in a pinch.  Oops. 

Step 6 – Pull Up and Retape Your Stripes Once You Realize You Did It Wrong the First Time 

Optional step that you hopefully get to skip ;o) 

Step 7 – Mix Your Paint 

The Textile Medium instructions say to mix 1 part Textile Medium to 2 parts paint.  Therefore, I mixed 1 bottle of Textile Medium with 2 bottles of paint.  This made the perfect amount of paint to do 1 thick first coat and 1 thin second coat for one panel.

Protect those knees!  Bathtub kneelers are also good for projects that you have to kneel to do!

Step 8 – Paint! 

This is pretty self-explanatory.  Take your roller, dip it in the paint, and go to town!  As stated in Step 7, I painted the first coat really thick, and then added another thin coat right after.  I didn’t wait for it to dry in between or anything, and it turned out great. 

Step 9 – Let Dry and Peel Off Tape 
Finally, go tackle some other projects (or just rest if you’re not me) while your panels dry.  I let mine dry for about 3 hours and then I peeled off the tape.  

Step 10 - Hang 

So what are you waiting for??  Hang and admire your work! 

I hope this tutorial provides good, clear information without overwhelming you.  If you decide to take the plunge and try these, let me know how yours turn out... I would love to see!
P.S. This is also a little sneak peek of my office that I'm making over.  The big reveal is coming soon!


  1. Giiiiirrlll you're amazing!!! These turned out awesome! If I ever need to paint curtains, I'm coming back to this post :)

  2. WOW! These turned out great! Love them. Your tutorial is awesome! I may have to give this a try. Great job. :)


Thank you for taking the time to comment... I read and respond to each and every one! However, if you are a no-reply blogger (meaning that your email address is not connected to your Blogger account), I will not be able to reply to you directly via email... you will have to check back on the blog post for a response!