6 Things to Know When Using Drop Cloths for Sewing and Craft Projects

You’re going to think I’m crazy. Yeah, yeah, you already know it. Remember when I showed you how to make a straight curtain hem the easy way? And I told you I was unhappy with the yellowish khaki color of the osnaburg fabric? Well, there was no easy way to change the color so I (re)made the master bedroom curtains from drop cloths.

You probably won’t be able to tell the difference in color in the pictures, but I’m much happier with the oatmeal color of the new curtains. (Excuse the grainy photos- low light and not-great camera.)

My first curtains made from osnaburg:


Master Bedroom Curtains Osnaburg


New curtains from drop cloths:


Master Bedroom Curtains Drop Cloth Fabric


There are a few cautions I wanted to share with you, though, if you decide to use drop cloths, especially for larger projects like this.


6 Things to Know When Using Drop Cloths for Sewing and Craft Projects:


1.  Drop cloths were not intended to be used for fine sewing- expect flaws and work with or around them. Here is what I found on one of my panels:


Drop Cloths Sewing Craft Tips | PlumDoodles.com


2.   Don’t expect the measurements on the package to be precise. My panels were about 3 inches shorter than the stated measurements.

3.  Hems won’t be square or straight. I’m ok with that for curtains, but you will need to account for it in your measurements if you want to trim and square up the edges.

4.  Pre-wash the fabric if you plan on washing the finished project (a good idea with any fabric). Be warned- this stuff shrinks a lot. My panels were 8 inches shorter than the measurements on the package by the time I washed and dried them. (See #2) I had to add an extra strip to the bottom to make the panels long enough.

5.  Drop cloths may not be one continuous piece. One of the larger pieces I’ve bought  was four pieces stitched together, with seams vertically and horizontally, making it unusable for curtains.

6.  Buy all the pieces you need at one time to make sure the color is the same. (Again, a good idea when buying any fabric.)

I’m not sure if I’m completely finished with the curtains. Maybe add ruffles to the bottom from a sheer white fabric. Sort of a soft meets utilitarian look. Or an overall stencil? A band of color? What do you think? Would you add something to these curtains made from drop cloths?




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  1. Sarina van der Watt says:

    What is Osnaberg?

  2. This reminds me of the curtain you made for your shower in your home in Duncan! You are so clever.

  3. I love it when people find new uses for things! These came out great! Stopping in from SITS.

  4. Very cool! I wish I was this creative! Dropping in from SITS!

  5. Ruffles, a stencil design or a band of color would all be beautiful! Can’t wait to see what you come up with.

  6. I do like the color of the drop cloth curtains better. It’s a really subtle change but I like the more oatmeal look too. I also appreciated the tips on how to sew them, the prewashing, etc. I haven’t tried a project with dropcloths yet, but now you make me want to.

  7. I love the way they turned out, Sheila! Too bad about the Osnaberg. I buy it to make stuff {pillows, tea towels} and I always look for the oatmeal colored one. I don’t really care for what I guess they consider “natural”. Maybe its that yellow tinge you mention. How was it sewing the dropcloth? This would probably be a good solution for my daughter’s kitchen sliding door. She is currently using old panels I had but they really need to be changed. I think dropcloth would be the least expensive way to go.

  8. You amaze me! Drop cloth curtains! I love them and I do see the color difference! You always give the greatest tips and tutorials! Thanks! Love these!

  9. Awesome Tutorial! Great stuff right here! They look fantastic!

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