How to Make a Dress & Purse Out of Curtains

By Prev Info - January 22, 2023

Sewing a wedding dress

Curtains are often made of finely textured and high-quality materials that have interesting graphics, designs and colors. The material from new or used curtains can be recycled to make other items such as a tablecloth or even clothing and handbags. With some sewing skills and the help of a dress pattern as a guide, you can make a dress and purse out of curtains.

Things You'll Need

  •     Large curtains, approximately 5 to 6 square feet.
  •     Dress pattern
  •     Purse pattern
  •     Purse frame with clasp
  •     Scissors
  •     Sewing machine
  •     Needle and thread
  •     Buttons and/or zipper


  1. Choose the curtain material you would like to make into a dress and purse. Check that the curtains have not been treated with fire retardant chemicals; this should be noted on the label. Also check the label for the fabric care instructions. Curtains made from wool or thick polyester material may require dry-cleaning only. Curtains made from natural fibers such as cotton work best for sewing into clothing as they are easy to machine wash.
  2. Choose a pattern for the dress in the design you wish to make and that will work with the type of material you have. Also choose a pattern for the purse and a frame shape that you would like for it. Cut out the correct pattern size for the dress.
  3. Remove any lining from the curtains. If the curtains are gathered at the top, unstitch the seams so that the fabric will lay completely flat. Machine or hand-wash the curtains even if they are new, to ensure that the material will not shrink after you have measured and cut it.
  4. Lay the material on a table or other flat surface. Check the dress pattern for a demonstration of how to lay out the pattern on the fabric. Ensure that the curtains are wide enough to make the dress. If the curtains are not wide enough, you may need to join two pieces or use wider curtains. Place the dress pattern on the fabric as instructed and cut the dress pieces.
  5. Sew the dress pieces according to the pattern and instructions, using the sewing machine. Finish the dress as needed with the needle and thread to hem and add buttons or zippers, if required.  
  6. Cut out the purse fabric using the pre-cut purse pattern. Sew the bottom and sides of the purse with the sewing machine. Attach the purse to the purchased frame, using a needle and thread.

Tips & Warnings

  1. You can choose one single print and color or two or more complementary curtains to make your dress or purse.
  2. If you do not have at least beginner to average sewing skills, have a seamstress or tailor make this dress and purse for you.
  3. You can also use a dress that you like and that fits you well, to trace the pattern for the new dress.
  4. Ensure that the curtain fabric is not faded or too thick to make a dress out of; very heavy material will not hang correctly when made into a dress.
  5. Ensure that the curtain material is not sprayed with fire-retardant or other chemicals that can cause skin irritation. If this information is not stated on the label, it is best not to use the material.





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