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Thread: Drop Cloth fabric

  1. #1
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    Drop Cloth fabric

    Has anyone made curtains or slipcovers with drop cloths? I'm new to making slip covers and don't want to invest a fortune. I like that linen and nubby look very much. On the internet many are saying they use drop cloths for making curtains, roman shades and slip covers. I'm repairing a house from hurricane florence and trying to keep budget down. I also have little experience with slip covers. I'm thinking if I can do slip cover and make some roman shades that would be great. If you ever used drop cloths explain how you got the fabric nice and soft, I'm reading bleach it, but I really don't want it go to white. I prefer that off white color. Thanks all.
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  2. #2
    Super Member osewme's Avatar
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    Maybe you could bleach it (if that makes it soft) and re-dye it the color you want. Have you thought about tea dying?

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  3. #3
    Super Member GingerK's Avatar
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    I would think that washing them a few times and adding extra fabric softener might help soften them. Roman shades are not as easy to make as they look. But making curtains using grommets might be an option. Another idea would be to check out the local thrift and goodwill stores. It is surprising what you can find.
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    Drop cloths will certainly hold up better than muslin for slipcovers but might be a bit of a pain to maneuver. Duck cloth is also an option - very comparable to drop cloths but don't know for price comparison...might want to check some of the reliable fabric sources for that.

    As to roman shades...I used quilting cotton/batting and did not have much of an issue. I think I made 3-4 for a total of 2 rooms. Cost wasn't horrible. Piece together batting scraps. I did 'inside' window measurements. If you're looking for light control might want to go a couple of inches beyond 'outside' window measurements. And you'll need the tape w/rings to place on the backing fabric. Also tricky to hang unless you do a small pocket to use a tension rod but then pulling the shades can mess up that arrangement. Just some thoughts.

  5. #5
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    Softness will come. Just wash and dry a few times... and then use it. Remember it will likely shrink!
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    I made children’s tee pees and used a drop cloth. It was very “nubby” which was ok for the project, but it had a loose weave, so it raveled a lot. I pressed open each seam & stitched seam allowances down for stability. It was 6 “V” shaped sections & when 2 sections were sewed together, I stitched about 2.5” away to make a pocket for the poles. All drop cloths aren’t the same quality or weave so maybe keep that in mind.

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    My father was a construction painter for most of his life. I remember his drop cloths being a tighter weave and softer than those bought at discount places. Maybe those bought by professional painters at paint stores are better quality?

  8. #8
    Senior Member leighway's Avatar
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    Some of the most beautiful and durable slip-covers I ever saw were made from drop cloths...just be sure and pre-wash a bunch of times...over and over and dry them hard! then iron, cut and sew...put some covered cording along the edges (easy to do)...you'll have a dynamite slip-cover!

    Thinking about this...take the drop cloths to a commercial laundromat and use hot hot water to wash and high temps to dry...those industrial washers are good for that.
    Last edited by leighway; 06-11-2019 at 06:06 AM. Reason: additional info

  9. #9
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    Thank you Leighway, your giving me a little confidence, and your suggestion of commercial laundromat seems wise.
    Create something beautiful from scraps.

  10. #10
    Super Member Chasing Hawk's Avatar
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    I have used heavy duty muslin in the making of slipcovers. Years ago a client brought in several bolts of the muslin for me to make slipcovers for her living room furniture. It was easy for me to work with since I was accustomed to heavy weight fabric in my upholstery business. I used an industrial machine and thread made for upholstering (thread is a size B92 (also known as Size 16).
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  11. #11
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    The main problem with drop cloth fabric is large slubs in the fabrics. Also many have a seam that will run either across or up/down. I know this after watching a niece make drapery out of drop cloths. Using the same package and size from the same big box store did not mean she was getting the same material. I think that you might be better using duck cloth or heavy muslin like Chasing Hawk suggested.

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