diy: cheese cloth curtain
We are deep into January. deep into snow. deep into the rhythm of shorter days and early sunsets. I think that I've learned to handle northeastern winters quite well, but what keeps me happy is light. Keeping my house flooded with natural light lifts all of our spirits and keeps the winter blues away. Enter my latest project: wispy curtains that let the light shine in! I had bought a package of cheesecloth a couple of months back for straining yogurt. It wound up in my fabric stash instead of the kitchen. The loose weave looked too promising to sacrifice for yogurt. I knew I'd come up with some way to celebrate it as a textile, rather than just the incredible list of duties that its package boasts: steaming, straining, spice bags, basting, poaching canning, and dusting. Yesterday, during a rare play-date for ME, my good friend Kathrin came for coffee. We had lots of show and tell of things we've been making and for some reason I felt compelled to bring out my cheesecloth." What can we make with this?" I asked. As we gently unfolded the gauzy two yards we oohed and aahhed over its ethereal qualities. "Poor man's lace" were words that came to mind. Kathrin thought it would make a lovely curtain. I happen to have two windows in our dining area that have sported a rod, but no curtain for years. I got up on a chair and draped over the 2 yards of sheer unbleached cotton.
Delicious! Didn't need anything more. And most importantly, look at that sunshine!
I kept it up all day, and I think we're all smitten with it. In fact, my husband's first words upon walking
in the door were about how much he loved the new curtain. I stopped off at our co-op for a couple more yards today (less than $3.00 locally). They are just right in our old farm kitchen. A wisp of poetry and romance floating over the windows and letting the light stream in, softening the intensity of all of the snowy view. Each curtain looks old and full of history and echos of the weathered and aged curtains framed in abandoned farmhouse windows in these rural parts. Here's a view in early morning.
If you live in a cold climate, but have drafty, old windows this is obviously a style for you to try in a warmer season. We are quite fortunate that the former owner of our 1850's home retained the original sills/frames when he replaced the window panes with updated energy efficient ones.
I thought about making these curtains a bit more decorative or finished with a little vintage lace or ribbons, but you know how much I like simplicity in strategic spots. I think these will stay as is. My studio, however, is far from simple.
- Tack a piece of jute twine to the top of the window frame.
- Drape cheese cloth and secure it with clothespins.
- For a bit of whimsy, tie a bow of twine to cinch the center and embellish with a paper flower.
I bought my unbleached cloth locally, but if you can't get it at your health food store, find it here .
Obviously, you can really customize these with your own style of embellishing and draping. More on my favorite new paper flowers next week. I'll be back over the weekend with more of India.