Any way to DIY these Anthropologie curtains without it looking cheesy?
June 11, 2013 4:03 PM   Subscribe

I love these Anthropologie Marrakech curtains, but at $128 per panel, they aren't going to happen in this life time. I have some practice fabric and some white cotton panels I can use. Is there any way to stencil a similar effect without it looking cheesy? I've considered fabric paint, glitter, etc. after making a simplified stencil. What else could I do to achieve a similar effect? Thank you, Hive mind!
posted by Issithe to Home & Garden (16 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I've loved them for a long time too. The Plum and Turquoise colors are on sale right now - right here. They also show up on ebay every now and then.

If you want to DIY, get a good stencil and go at it. This site has really nice ones.
posted by barnone at 4:12 PM on June 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

This Etsy shop has some gorgeous stencils. They're a bit pricey ($40-60 mostly), but they're reusable, of course. You could also get or make a printing block, and stamp the paint on.
posted by Nibbly Fang at 4:12 PM on June 11, 2013

They look to be embroidered with gold thread, or at least gold-colored floss. It might take comparable skill to make paint or glitter look similar.
posted by Cranberry at 4:13 PM on June 11, 2013

Have you looked through amazon like a hawk? Me and my partner really wanted specific curtains(which were like $300 a panel) for the bedroom which were never, ever going to happen. We ended up finding nearly identical ones made out of slightly cheap materials for something like $120 a set.

I just surfed through "indian curtains" and a few other similar searches on amazon and found a lot of similar-ish ones for $49 a panel+/- If you can give up on getting identical ones to those, you can likely get very similar ones for cheap.
posted by emptythought at 4:14 PM on June 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

I think that if you improvised some sort of quilting frame that you could totally do this! Find a pattern and use an exacto to cut it out of a stencil sheet/rigid, thin piece of plastic and clip it to your fabric. Use some fabric paint (the kind meant to be flexible, not stiff) and a stencil brush/stiple brush to apply it and voilĂ  - Super cool curtains!
posted by PorcineWithMe at 4:15 PM on June 11, 2013

Oh, i missed my primary point. Which was that we looked in to making them ourselves and just getting decent curtain-sized amounts of fabric basically anywhere we looked cost almost as much, or even the same as just getting premade(lined!) curtains with nice finishwork. DIY will not save you much of, if any money here. And this is coming from someone who regularly DIYs stuff and gets probably in over my head just trying to save cash.
posted by emptythought at 4:17 PM on June 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

I'd just buy ready made curtains from Target or wherever and then stencil, embroider, or applique them to look like what you want. If you live in a city with lots of fabric stores (like LA or NYC) you might be able to find decorating fabric that comes close.
posted by Ideefixe at 4:36 PM on June 11, 2013

Honestly, my guess is the effect you love there is caused by the stitching and the way the light reflects differently off it depending on the way the threads run. It's stunning, and you're not going to get it with paint or glitter. I think less expensive embroidered curtains would make you happier than trying to imitate these. I think emptythought's suggestion is a good one.
posted by donnagirl at 4:51 PM on June 11, 2013 [4 favorites]

Do crewel/embroidery work yourself. It's a skill and you can do a beautiful pattern! Needlework is making a comeback!
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 5:01 PM on June 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I would suggest some cheapie white sheers from IKEA, stencilled with a cream colored paint. You might mix in a little bit of gold into the cream paint, if that floats your boat. If you do get sheers, be mindful that the paint may seep through the panel to the other side, so protect your work surface with plastic. I would use Jacquard fabric paints, if this was my project - and Jacquard's Lumiere paint for the gold.
posted by sarajane at 5:09 PM on June 11, 2013

Donnagirl is right - you can stencil some curtains and get a different effect, but these curtains have been an Anthropologie favorite least 5 years? Maybe longer? They have the right proportions, the stitching is kind of iridescent, and the design just works. I've seen them in person and there's no way I could paint or stencil an approximate facsimile. You might be happier going with other embroidered Moroccan-style curtains than trying to replicate this design.
posted by barnone at 5:21 PM on June 11, 2013

I'm going to agree that if you want to make an exact replica, that embroidery is going to take a long time. If you're just looking for something cheaper in that style, Fab India might be a place to start.
posted by tinymegalo at 5:43 PM on June 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

Hand embroidering those curtains is going to take a monstrously long time (and you will hate the curtains by the time you're done.) I would check with a machine embroidery service to see what they charge. Or look for fabric that has already been embroidered.
posted by corey flood at 6:03 PM on June 11, 2013

this idea may not be for an exact match, but may be worth looking into - do you have any good thrift stores you can go poke around in? I have found old saris that are in lovely fabrics with fancy embroidery, and 1 sari is just the right size to make 2 long curtain panels. My living room window curtains are bright red with gold paisley embroidery, and they look smashing. You may even be able to find some online - the ones here are pretty and reasonably priced.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 3:07 AM on June 12, 2013 [2 favorites]

one other thing about saris - they tend to be asymmetrical, so the two curtain panels will not be identical - they'll match interestingly, though
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 3:10 AM on June 12, 2013 [1 favorite]

I came in here to recommend saris, too. I have a sari in my apartment right now that has a very similar look as those curtains!
posted by ohmy at 6:50 AM on June 12, 2013

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