One easy and inexpensive way to reduce heating and cooling expenses is to use insulated window treatments. These feature an extra layer that keeps the home cooler during summer and warmer in winter. If you can operate a sewing machine, you can make custom insulated window treatments for less than they usually cost at the store.
You will need:
Step 1: Use the tape measure to determine the width of the window. Multiply this figure by two. Determine the length by measuring from the top of the curtain rod to the desired length, usually 2 inches under the sill or at the floor. Add 12 inches to this figure. The total is the amount of fabric that should be purchased for the window. To make the curtains more effective insulators, choose a heavy material like crushed velvet or cotton. Purchase the same width of flannel and insulated lining fabric but subtract 3 inches from curtain fabric length to determine the correct length of flannel and lining fabric.
Step 2: Create a fold 4 inches from the bottom of the curtain fabric and press this. Fold this fabric over one more time and iron, pin, and sew it. This creates a 4-inch hem.
Step 3: Fold the bottom flannel edge up 3 inches and iron it. Fold it over one more time and press, pin, and sew it. Do the same for the insulated lining fabric. You now have a 3-inch hem on each one.
Step 4: Place the curtain fabric so the pattern side faces up. Place the lining fabric on top of it so the tops align. Put the flannel on top of the lining fabric, laying it face down and evenly aligning the tops. Pin edges and sew the sides.
Turn the curtain inside out so the patterned side of the fabric is exposed. The fabric will be on one side and the lining will be on the other, with the flannel in the middle. This places the seam inside the curtain where it will not show.
Step 5: Turn down top edges of all three fabrics by ½-inch and iron. Turn the fabrics down another 3 inches and press, pin, and sew together, going through all layers and leaving the ends open to create an entry point for the curtain rod.
Step 6: Slide the curtain rod through the fabric pocket created in Step 5 and hang the curtain.