Shortening Ready-made, Lined, Pencil Pleated Curtains - An Easy Tutorial

If you've bought a pair of ready-made, lined, pencil pleated curtains, only to find that they are too long for your windows, you willl probably want to know how to shorten them.  Thankfully, shortening lined, pencil pleat curtains isn't as difficult as you might think.  Here's a helpful tutorial to show you how to do it.

What you'll need

  • note pad and pencil
  • tape measure
  • scissors
  • stitch unpicking tool
  • pins
  • sewing machine

How to do it

  1. First of all, you need to decide on the perfect length for your curtains.  To do this, hang one curtain so that it falls straight.  Mark the desired length by placing a pin sideways into the fabric.  
  2. Take the curtain down, fold it in half from top to bottom, and then measure from the top edge to the pin.  Make a note of the measurement and remove the pin.  
  3. Next, take your tape measure and measure the curtain again, this time starting at the bottom edge and up to the top.  Place two more pins sideways into the edges of the curtain fabric at the measurement you noted earlier.  
  4. Lay the curtain flat, fabric side down, with the header tape at the top.  Fold down the top so that the fold is in line with the two pins.  
  5. Next, pin right along the fabric between the two pins so that all the layers are pinned together.  
  6. Now unpick the header tape by cutting through each stitch and carefully easing the tape away from the curtain fabric.  Don't be tempted to pull it apart as the fabric could easily tear.  
  7. Next, re-attach the header tape to the curtain.  To do this, remove the pin from one corner of the curtain and place it in the header tape.  Work your way across the whole folded curtain, taking out the pins and using them to attach the header tape.  
  8. Now run the curtain through the sewing machine to stitch the header tape to the fabric.  
  9. Unfold the top of the curtain to expose the excess fabric at the top, and then cut it off with a sharp pair of dressmaking scissors.  
  10. Finally, run a line of stitching along the bottom edge of the header curtain tape and trim off the excess thread ends.  
  11. Repeat the process with the second curtain.

In conclusion

You can quickly and simply shorten ready-made, lined, pencil pleat curtains by following the helpful tutorial above.