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How to Hang Pencil Pleat Curtains

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Here’s a simple guide on how to easily hang your pencil pleat curtains, and make a great job of it! You’ve taken time to choose some beautiful curtain fabrics to enhance your home, and you’ve (hopefully!) chosen to have your curtains made by our expert makers. The final step is to hang your curtains properly to make them, and your room, look amazing. If you haven’t ordered or made your curtains yet, take a look at our curtain making information knowledge bank for lots of useful tips!

skill level beginner

Time needed: 30 minutes

  1. First, have a look at the header tape

    Before you start to hang your pencil pleat curtains, take a look at the header tape. There are rows of strings on the header tape which are used to gather up the pleats. Our makers will sew these off at one end, which will be the leading edge, where the curtains meet. Your curtains might be different, so if the strings are not sewn in, tie them off neatly at one end, and try to have that as the edge where the curtains meet.

  2. Measure up!

    Measure your curtain pole or track and divide the number by two. This is roughly how wide each curtain needs to be; add a little bit extra so that your curtains are a little bit wider than they need to be so that they will close comfortably.

  3. Gather up

    Pull the unknotted strings to gather the curtains until they are just a bit wider than half the track; this is how you give the pencil pleat curtains their nice even gathers. Make sure you pull all the strings evenly so that the header tape gathers up evenly, then tie off the long end to keep your curtains gathered. Don’t cut the cord, just in case you want to move or adjust your curtains; you can bundle up the strings, pop them in a bag, or use a cord tidy if you like.

  4. Now do some maths…

    Count up how many curtain rings or gliders you have on your pole or track. This is the total number of hooks you need. Now divide that number in half. This is the total number of hooks you need on each curtain

  5. Then add your hooks

    Space out your hooks on the header tape before you start to put them in; a nice even spread will make your pencil pleat curtains hang evenly. You’ll see that the tape has several rows of pockets for the hooks; you need to make sure that you use the same row all the way along and on both curtains. For curtains on a pole you can use the top row of pockets, but for a track it’s better to use a lower one so that the top of the curtain hides the track. You’ll need a hook at the outside edge, and one a tiny way in from the inside edge for the best finish. Make sure you put the hooks into pockets.

  6. Ready to hang

    Now you are ready to hang your curtains. Before you start, consider how heavy your curtains are; for large or heavy curtains, it can be really helpful to have an assistant for this bit, to take the weight of the curtains while you hang them. As you already have the right number of hooks atached to your header tape, simply hook each one into a ring or glider, working from the outside edge and making sure that the hook at the outside edge goes into the fixed ring or end glider to keep your curtains in place.

  7. You’re done!

    Pencil pleat curtains are a classic look that suit almost every room. Hanging them properly is the finishing touch to set off your investment in your home.

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