Simple Ideas for Perking Up a Room With Drop Cloth Curtains

Curtains can get expensive fast. But instead of dropping hundreds of dollars on a custom set, consider repurposing drop cloths into stylish curtains. Jenny Komenda from Little Green Notebook shows us how.

Hi friends! Jenny Komenda here, from Little Green Notebook.

I remember years and years ago when I was shopping for my first pair of curtains from a retail store. I remember being sort of shocked at the price. Really, $150 per panel? It had to be less expensive to make my own curtains. After doing some research, I realized, after buying the fabric I liked and all the necessary linings, I was close to $100 per panel in my costs. Curtains are just expensive.

One trick I've learned over the years is canvas drop cloths can make amazing curtain panels, especially if you have extra tall windows. The canvas fabric is heavy too, so if you're trying to cut costs, you can likely get away with not lining these panels. Plus, you can find all sorts of sizes at your local hardware store.

Leaving the drop cloth in it's natural finish is a lovely look. They're usually an oatmeal color with a linen-y texture. It's easy and fun to jazz up the panels though, and these ideas from are sure to hit the mark in your home.

Looking for more inspo? Check out our best window treatment ideas.

Super Stripes

Stripes are an obvious choice. All you need is a little fabric paint and some painters tape. This blue-green blend is cute as a shower curtain, but could also be used in a child's bedroom or playroom. 

Learn how to make this striped shower curtain here.

Neutral Zone

Black and white stripes are classic. They dress up a living room or dining room, but still maintain  a touch of playfulness. Tone on tone stripes are another subtle and gorgeous option. I'm thinking of trying a beige and white version in our new house.

Color Block

Striped patterns don't have to be obvious. Opt for a subtler look by creating one wide stripe at the top of the panel. Or, try adding stripes to just the bottom of your panels. Either way the look will make a statement without going over the top. 

Stay Trim

Need an easy addition? Look no further than a pretty trim. We love this pom-pom curtain, but you could also add ribbon trim, beading, or twine. 

Add your own ribbon with this easy do-it-yourself project.

To Dye For

Seen at the likes of Anthropologie and other trend-setting stores, ombre is most definitely in. Get the look by dip-dyeing the panels your favorite shade. Leave different sections of the panel in the dye for different periods of time to mimic this pretty, color-blocked look. 

Get the trendy look by learning how to ombre dye. Instructions here.

Stencil Code

If you like the ombre look but don't want to commit to just one color, try stencils in tonal shades. These patterned curtains stick to hues within the same color family for an eye-catching look. Consider hanging curtains in a dining room, living room, or bedroom that could use a pop of color. 

Vibrant Pattern

Here's another stenciling project. I love the ikat pattern in blue and white. It looks beautiful paired with a pool area, but could also be a beautiful addition to a shower area. 

Geometry Lesson

Geometric stencils also work really well. This curtain was resist-dyed, meaning it was dyed one solid color, then portions of the dye were lifted from the curtain. The half-moon pattern is not only stylish, but it's also unique. 

Must-see pretty spray dye projects.

Free Hand

If you're artistic, try a free-hand squiggle design with some fabric paint. You're  not aiming for perfection with this design, but rather originality. If desired, add a panel of color on the bottom of the curtain to give it some weight. 

Sleek Solids

If you don't feel like getting too crafty, try dying the whole panel a single color. I love moody black or this nuanced yellow. Simply mix a dye mix together and dip the entire curtain panel. 


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