Tutorial: Fork and Knife Curtains

I am really excited to show you how I made Jilly’s fork and knife curtains from her kitchen/dining room makeover today! The curtains are inexpensive, easy to make, and most of all they are whimsical and UNIQUE!! But before I get started on the instructions, I want to show you the inspiration photo that gave me the idea for the curtains.
Fork and Knife curtainsPhoto Source: Marie Claire
I searched for store-bought fork and knife curtains to no avail! When I love something THIS [--------------------------------------------------------] much {that was me holding my arms out as far as I possibly can}, I absolutely cannot sleep until I figure out how I CAN HAVE THEM. So, I started to formulate a plan to re-create the fun curtains! Since I love you, I am going to share step by step instructions on how YOU can make these bad boys yourself.

Items needed for this project:
1 new paint drop cloth (I bought mine at Lowes since I recently found out at some of the Home Depot drop cloths have a horizontal seam in the center of their drop cloths) No bueno.
1 super nice HOT iron (not a 10 year old Sunbeam brand that I used the first time)
A sewing machine and ivory thread
A Silhouette CAMEO (or access to a friend’s CAMEO)
Fabric paint in the color of your choice (you can use fabric ink from Silhouette’s store, or you can buy fabric paint elsewhere)
Two long pieces of vinyl the height of your fork and knife (I made my fork and knife 84 inches tall {7 feet} so I needed 14 feet of Vinyl) Just buy the cheapest color, you are just using it as a stencil.
Two pieces of vinyl transfer paper in exactly the same lengths as the above vinyl.
The All Things Thrifty Fork Silhouette Image and the All Things Thrifty Knife Silhouette image  (purchase below)
Stencil brush
Curtain Rod and Curtain Clips

fork and knife curtains 738273837385
cottage style curtainsStep 1: Buy your drop cloth and wash and dry it. I bought a 9 foot by 12 foot drop cloth.
Step 2: Cut it in half. Cut it vertically into two 4 1/2 foot by 12 foot pieces. Jill’s ceilings are 10 foot ceilings, so it gave us the perfect amount of curtain to fold over the top and create a ruffle. (You may have to adjust the length of your curtains depending on the height of your ceilings.
Step 3: Iron your drop cloth. (This part took me three hours for one side because my ten year old iron did NOT cut it. Jill brought me her super nice Rowenta Iron, and it worked like a champ. {Random Sidenote: My husband Dan bought me a Rowenta Iron for Christmas after he saw how much frustration my terrible iron caused.}
Step 4: Hem the side of your curtains that you cut. The other three edges will already be hemmed. {Fold 1/4 inch over and iron it, then fold it again 1/4 inch and iron again. Sew it in place}.
Step 5: Cut your fork and knife images onto your vinyl. You do not care what color the vinyl is because you are only using it as a stencil. My fork and knife images were 7 feet tall.

 
Before you cut such a long piece of vinyl with your Silhouette CAMEO, let me give you a few little hints {that I learned the along the way}.
Make sure that your vinyl is loaded completely straight.
You might want to choose “Load with carrier” {not load media} even though you don’t load it with a carrier. It just sucks it into the Silhouette longer when you choose that option, and it will be easier to load it straight that way.
Before you load it into the machine, cut the edge of the vinyl along one of the lines before you load it into the machine.
Adjust your rollers to be on the 12” marks and make sure your rollers are locked down. I had a small issue with my lever being stuck in the {in between} spot and I thought it was locked when it actually wasn’t. I ruined A LOT of vinyl because of it.
Do a test run the first time. Take the blade completely out to make sure that your vinyl is loaded perfectly straight. This way if it is crooked, you aren’t actually cutting the vinyl yet. The machine will just act like it is cutting the image and you will know if the vinyl is loaded straight when the image is about half done “pretend cutting” if it is crooked, start over until you have it in perfectly. Halloween time 2011 072Step 6: After you have your image cut, remove the inside of the fork and knife vinyl and discard. Be careful and use your hook tool if needed.Halloween time 2011 074Your image should look like this: (except, I accidentally ruined part of the design on the handle, so I had to re-cut it). {That is the gray part in the picture below}.
Step 7: Use the vinyl transfer paper to transfer the image into your curtains. You will need another person’s help for this to make sure that you align your vinyl perfectly straight. Use a credit card to rub the vinyl onto your drop cloths and remove the transfer paper slowly and carefully.
Halloween time 2011 077  Halloween time 2011 083Halloween time 2011 084
Step 8: Use a stencil brush to stencil on your images. {Don’t forget to use fabric ink}.  Hint: Put a little paint on your stencil brush and then dab it off onto a paper towel. You don’t want your paint to be too wet or you risk it bleeding under the edge of your vinyl.
Halloween time 2011 092I wanted my images to look uneven and vintage, so I stenciled dark around the edges and stenciled a little uneven and lighter throughout the inside of the design.

Halloween time 2011 097This is what they looked like before I took off the vinyl.
Halloween time 2011 088 Halloween time 2011 105
Step 9: Wait for the ink to dry and remove the vinyl. Halloween time 2011 098 You will need your hook tool for some of the small intricate parts of the design. Halloween time 2011 100  VOILA!!! Your fork and knife designs are done!!!

2011-11-05_13-59-40_669curtains
Think of all the variations you can do with different colors of fabric ink! Make sure you follow the instructions on your fabric ink to set the fabric paint. With the paint I had from Silhouette, I had to iron over the image after it was dry.

cottage style curtains
The curtains were definitely one of the best elements in Jill’s makeover! I loved the custom look that the curtains gave her dining room/kitchen.

Comments

  1. 1

    Wow! I love the curtains! I didn't know the Silhouette could cut such long pieces. I have the Cricut Expression so I am limited to 24inches! Thanks for letting me know that I need to buy yet another gadget!!! Pinning this!

  2. 2

    Jill did an amazing job!

    ~Mrs. Delightful
    ourdelightfulhome.blogspot.com

  3. 3

    So unique! I think these would look so cute in a breakfast area or kitchen! Thanks for the detailed instructions too.

  4. 4

    Great tutorial! I don't have a silhouette…so wondering if there was any way/possibility of purchasing the actual vinyl?

  5. 5

    I love this – I wonder if my cricut could cut this?

  6. 6

    Great idea – it looks fantastic!
    Kelly

  7. 7

    The darker edges are a great touch!

  8. 8
    Jamie Lott says:

    Love this! I want to do this in my dining room. I have a Silhouette SD. I know I am limited in the width but can you tell me what the limit is on the length?

    I bought my SD just before the announcement about the Cameo. I am still cursing that unhappy occassion!

    Thanks in advance for any info you can give me!

    Jamie

  9. 9

    You've won the Versatile Blogger Award!
    See my Post @ http://frugal-home-design.blogspot.com/2012/02/i-won-versatile-blogger-award-0.html for more information & the Button :0)
    Jamie Brock: mrsjamiebrock(at)gmail(dot)com

    Ps. I really love your blog! It's amazing.. I will definitely be adding this to my fav blogs list :0)

  10. 10

    How cool! You are so stinkin' creative.
    by the way…you've been tagged :)
    http://www.sparklesandbugs.blogspot.com

  11. 11

    I love it! Such a great idea…thank you so much for sharing. I am happy to be your newest follower..

  12. 12

    Those bad boys are the bomb! Great Job :)

  13. 13

    These are incredible! i want to make some RIGHT NOW!

  14. 14

    You did a great job! Thanks for sharing…

  15. 15

    I seriously LOVE this its fabulous!! I wanted to let you know that I posted this today in my "What I Bookmarked This Week" post stop by and see!

  16. 16

    Thanks for sharing! They look awesome! Do you mind sharing where you got the bird cage wall handings?

  17. 17

    Wow! Awesome job, I would love to do these for my dining room!!

    xoxo
    twentyfour7
    Susan

  18. 18

    Would you post a link for both vinyl paper & transfer paper. I don't don't have a silhouette cameo…YET! But I MUST make these Curtians. They're aWESOME. I'm think birthday present(:
    On step seven did you use a knife to make your own stencil ? Since I don't have a silhouette…YET! I don't know how it works so that step seems unclear to me.
    I'v enjoyed your blog so much. I have gotten several ideas from what you did @ jill's that i can wait to implement in my poem home. Thanks for inspiring & sharing!!!!

  19. 19

    Hi Brooke! I'm new to your blog (yep, total stranger you're bearing your soul to—no pressure!) but your journey resonates with so many of us, myself included.

    Best of luck with your weight loss and fitness goals, but just so you know, based on this photo, I think you're lovely.

  20. 20

    We are in the process of making these curtains now! I am so excited for the outcome! Did you add the ruffle to the top, or did you just fold the extra curtain piece over?
    Love love love your stuff!

  21. 21

    I'm planning a similar project – curtains with a large, graphic, hand-painted design, but I'm having trouble determining what width of fabric to use as compared to the width of the curtain rod. I've read that you're supposed to double the width, but that seems like there would be too many folds for the design to read properly. What did you do for yours?

  22. 22

    Very Awesome! I am going to have to get one of those machines.

  23. 23

    @Erika Luckert

    With mine, I just made sure that when they were closed, the entire window was covered. I wish I had more awesome advice! Ha! Anyway, just measure your curtain rod and make sure you have enough fabric to cover the window when they are closed. Good luck!

  24. 24

    @jamie

    I just folded it over, trimmed the excess off, and hemmed them. Hope this helps! Good luck!

    -Brooke

  25. 25

    So fun, but the BEST TIP EVER is the try cutting vinyl first with no blade to see if it's loaded correctly.. OMG I have wasted a lot of vinyl, thanks for that:)

  26. 26

    I literally drooled when I saw your curtains. So simple, yet so elegant. I so want a Silhouette Cameo!

  27. 27
    suzie dyer says:

    I love these!! You mention in your post that the cutting files are for sale, but I can’t find that anywhere. Can you tell me how to buy them?

    • 28

      They “were” for sale until the files were lost when my computer died. Sorry for the inconvenience!

  28. 29

    Your blog continues to AMAZE me! Would love to feature one of your DIY projects soon. Keep on creating!

  29. 31

    How do you use your cutting mat with such a large piece to cut?? I’m new to this

    • 32

      When you are cutting vinyl, you don’t need to use your cutting mat! Just load it without. But, it has to be completely straight on a long piece like this or it will go crooked by the end.

  30. 33

    How do you use your cutting mat with such a large piece to cut?? I’m new to this

    • 34

      Steph,
      I don’t use the cutting mat. I just load the vinyl without the mat. I hope this helps! I have to uncheck the tiny square that says cutting mat in the Silhouette Software.

  31. 35
    Suzanne MOrrison says:

    I MUST make these for my new kitchen…any chance you will make us all happy and recreate the file and sell it to us all? I so want it.

  32. 41

    Awesome drapes!!! love the vintage feel, where do I buy the fork and knife image?

  33. 42
    Amanda Peck says:

    So I just saw the you recreated your art in the previous post. Are you going to sell it again? I would really like a copy. Thanks

  34. 43

    i would love to purchase these files also if you still have them, thank you

  35. 44

    I would like to purchase this file too please!

  36. 46

    Hi,

    Could you please email me where to get the file and how to pay?

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