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How to Get Pretty, Easy and Inexpensive Curtains (Ikea Curtain Hack)

Curtains are often expensive or just plain ugly! Get pretty, easy, inexpensive curtains with this simple Ikea Curtain Hack!

Blinds. Curtains. Shutters. Everywhere you look, it seems that the options for window coverings have one of three problems:

  1. They’re ugly,
  2. They’re a cleaning nightmare, or
  3. They’re expensive.

Well I don’t know about you, but I’m not interested in having ugly in my home. At. All. And while I ADORE the look of California shutters, I cannot seem to get past the dust factor. Who wants to have to clean those things all the time?! Besides, I most certainly do NOT want to have to remortgage my house just to get a little privacy from the locals.

In the past (at our last house actually) we used drop cloths to create inexpensive curtains. And they were great – for a time.

But for our new house, I wanted something a little softer. A little more romantic, maybe? Or perhaps elegant is the word I mean.

In any case, I found the perfect solution for inexpensive curtains – with an Ikea hack!

Curtains are often expensive or just plain ugly! Get pretty, easy, inexpensive curtains with this simple Ikea Curtain Hack!


How to Get Pretty, Easy and Inexpensive White Curtains


(Supply list contains affiliate links for ease of shopping!)



1. Wash curtains according to package directions. This will make them softer and they will hang much better than if not washed.

2. Hang curtain rod(s). Remember to hang “high and wide” to give the impression of larger windows and to let in plenty of light.

3. Add the curtain rings with clips to the rods. An uneven number on each side/for each curtain panel works best. For our living room curtains we used 7 rings per panel. In the dining room we used 5 for each panel (we used a total of four panels in the dining room).

4. After washing curtains, lay them out over a chair or on a table top upside down. Depending upon the height of the curtain rods, fold the small hemmed edge (what is meant to be the bottom of the curtain) over to create sort of a ruffled edge. For our living room curtains, this fold was about 11 inches. For the dining room, because of the bulkhead, the fold was closer to 13 inches.

5. While carefully keeping the fold in place, attach the curtain panels to the ring clips. First clip one end, then the opposite. Next attach the center of the curtain using the middle ring clip, followed by remaining clips. (I just eyeballed the distance between clips, but you can measure if you’re more particular than I am.)


By flipping the curtain panels upside down, you get a softer top hem and a nice wide lower hem. And of course you get the look of soft ruffled curtains for a fraction of the price!

cheap ruffled curtain hack

Have you tried any curtain hacks at your house? What have you found to be a pretty, yet easy and inexpensive curtain solution?

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I'd love to chat with you in the comments!


  1. Jennifer says

    I did this in my living room with a heavier weight curtain from Ikea and LOVE IT! Sucha fabulous idea! Thanks for sharing it. I want to do it in all of my bedrooms as well and want to use these curtains that you are suggesting. I am concerned that they are too sheer though. What is your opinion?

  2. Kathleen says

    I saw your dining room on Pinterest. I’ve been all over you site, but couldn’t locate the source for you wicker looking chairs in the room. They look like Ikea, but I’m also curious about the cushions. I didn’t see the thicker ones at Ikea. Thanks for you help!

    • Shannon says

      Unfortunately I’m not sure about the cushions. The chairs and cushions are both Ikea but we picked up the cushions in the store and I have no idea what they’re called or anything. I’m so sorry!

  3. Rebecka Goodrow says

    Are your rods black and wooden rings black. When i looked on amazon i found the black rods and only walnut wooden rings.

  4. Susan says

    I love white curtains! I have a problem in my new open concept house!
    There is a bay window, the 2 very narrow windows on either side of the big window, looking out into the backyard
    I bought custom blinds – white – slatted blinds for the house through out
    There just is no room for a curtain or valance between the windows plus it needs to tie into the living & kitchen space, color wise
    If this looks terrible, we can repaint it, instead of curtains, because these windows are so close
    Together & like a bay window, kind of in its own “bay window enclave or nook,” we are going
    To paint the very small amount of wall space between the windows my Sherwin Williams SeaSalt ,
    But I Will stay in the “bay window nook” area with the SeaSalt, We have painted the interior side of the exterior
    Doors SeaSalt & the backside of a bar facing the dining area space SeaSalt, we are about to start searching for the right white paint for the walls in this 3 rooms in 1 open concept space / all my furniture & accent pieces are in the blue/ greenSeasalt color family & I love white……….wishing I could just hang curtains! But I have my white curtains in other rooms & the white slatted blinds through out…as I have said, when you moved, I wanted to move & we sold & bought right after you did! Love your style Shannon!

    • Shannon Acheson says

      Hello Susan. Could you put white curtains on either side of just the two outer windows (not between them and the bay window)? ๐Ÿ™‚ Congratulations on your new house too, by the way!

  5. Selina says

    Very pretty however your window frames are next to the ceiling. Do you have any ideas for Window frame that is 18 inches from the ceiling? I love the drapery to flow to the floor like in your post but I am not sure that I can buy ikea drapery in that length. Thank you!

    • Shannon Acheson says

      Actually, they are only right next to the ceiling in the dining room. They are not in the living room or kitchen. You could simply make the folded-over part shorter. Or buy longer curtains. Ikea sells many long versions as they don’t hem them and give you the option of how long you’d like them to be.

  6. Alma says

    Do you mind sharing which heavier curtains you used to do this with? I’m also wanting to try this with a bit less sheer curtain. Just wondering what worked best for you. Would love to see pics if you have any as well! ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Kate says

    What an awesome idea to hang these drapes upside down! I’m off to Ikea to buy some for my dining room! So pretty and lets lots of light in.

  8. Karen says

    We wanted to continue having the light in the room yet have privacy. We did this same thing with flat 100% cotton sheets from Walmart starting at 5.00 per panel. We needed to shorten some so we made a double roll at the top. We did not turn any upside-down as we used the top hem as our fold line.

  9. Mary ann grant says

    Felt the same about the expense of shutters when I built my sum room. Bought โ€˜Vivianโ€™s too. The price was so good. I needed 12 for the sunny side,hemmed them easily. I canโ€™t believe the softness they bring to my room!

  10. Pamela Howell says

    Love that idea for soft romantic inexpensive curtains thank you. I’ve seen a similar look for inexpensive crossovers, using tab curtains & decorative hooks evenly spaced over top of window, hook both curtains tabs on hooks then tie each curtain back with tie backs, looks effective also.

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