Friday, July 5, 2013

Homemade Curtain Weights (what Post-It notes, pennies, and paperclips can do)

While in high school I regularly volunteered with Habitat for Humanity.  During summers I raised rafters, drywalled, and painted house exteriors on week-long work camps.  On Saturdays during the year I spackled and painted at a local Habitat house.

Although I didn't realize it then, these rudimentary construction experiences gave me confidence with the DIY projects I face as a homeowner now.

Of course, I'm still learning small tricks of the trade.  For example, while recently hanging curtains rods I discovered one strategy that makes drilling virtually mess-free.  Simply adhere a bent Post-It to the wall directly below your drill marks, and when you drill the Post-It will neatly catch the dust.

As for those newly-hung curtains throughout our house?  They transformed our rooms, making each space feel polished and finished.  (In my husband's words, "It looks like grown ups live here.")  Yes, we're finally all grown up.

But there was still one minor problem with our newly matured spaces: several curtains didn't drape well at the bottom.  Because the fabric was lightweight, the edges billowed outward instead of falling neatly downward.

While brainstorming an easy and inexpensive fix, I designed these homemade curtain weights by stacking a few pennies, gluing them together, and adhering them to a paper clip.  Each weight costs only four cents (literally), and they unobtrusively fasten to the curtain's inner hem. 

Given that paperclips are naturally malleable, you can bend them to suit your needs.  While securing my weights, I simply dropped the weight into the open hem and left one prong of the paperclip exposed on the inner (non-visible) side of the curtain panel.

If you look closely, you'll see that I tuck that exposed prong of the paperclip underneath one of the stitches for added stability.  As a final precaution, I also pinch each paperclip tightly closed to prevent the weight from sliding out of the hem.

The result is that my curtains now drape beautifully, as you'll see in the picture below.  As an added bonus, if I'm ever desperately short on petty change, I instantly know where I can find a stash of coins.

Want to explore more DIY before-and-after projects?  Check out a few of my other ideas below.  (I tell you, the transformation of the old end table will blow you away!)

Maximizing Office Spaces: DIY Desk and Hiding Unsightly Computer Wires
Frame It: Creative Ways to Fill a Picture Frame
Giving New Life to an Old End Table
How to Stencil Perfectly Every Time
Wood Hoop Wall Art

Do you have a favorite DIY tip?  Share it -- I'd love to hear!
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  1. Thank you so much for the curtain weight idea! I just smacked my forehead and thought, "Why didn't I think of that!" They will be added to my curtains today!

  2. You're so welcome! Glad that this tip is useful for you!

  3. You could also use fishing sinkers.

  4. What kind of glue do you use?

  5. Super glue will help to keep the paperclips adhered. Anything weaker (like Elmer's school glue or a craft glue) likely wouldn't be strong enough.

  6. AnonymousJuly 04, 2014

    Thank you!!! You just saved me over 9 dollars! I used body/clothing double sided tape to keep the pennies (10) together and placed them on the inside edge of the hem (the double sided tape keeps it secure). My sheer grommet curtains look perfect!

    1. So glad to hear that this solution worked well for you! Thanks for sharing!

  7. Could you please post a pic of what they look like attached?TIA :)

    1. Pictures of the attached curtain weights are posted for you. I hope that they're helpful!


  9. THANKS! I have been trying to find curtain weights that were lead free AND not enclosed in vinyl for my child's bedroom. I'm not a handy DIY or crafty type of person, but this looks like something even I could handle. Will be trying this tonight!

    1. So glad that this tutorial was useful and I hope that it works out well for you!