Again with the olive drab! These curtains were not only ugly, but they were in serious need of cleaning—really yucky on the white lining side of the curtain facing the window. They were truly a nasty grey that I’m not sure would have ever washed out.
The thing I discovered about these curtains is how they were mounted in the cab over window. When I took them down, I found that the curtains had a plastic guide tape attached to the top and bottom which were, in turn, slid onto a rail at the top and bottom.
I had read some more frugal people doing RV makeovers taking the time to use a seam ripper to rip the tape off the old curtains and sew them onto the new. This would, at best, be a sloppy affair. The tape was made of plastic, so any previous sewing holes would still be evident. Also, with years of sun exposure, the tape was discolored and brittle. The rails were in good shape, and I found 72” replacement tape for a little over $6 each at Camping World (with my Sam’s Club discount.)
Again, I used the old curtains as a patterned guide for the new and selected the striped upholstery fabric that I had used for the privacy curtain. To figure the appropriate width for the new curtains, I calculated the width of the old curtains, added two inches for side seams and 1” for each pleat. The width didn’t have to be exact, although erring on the side of too long was better than it being too short.
You can see how the glide tape attached to the curtain and then the rail.
Sewing the new tape onto the new curtains proved to be a nightmare at times. First, I picked a very slippery, lightweight fabric, which was difficult to sew in my machine and get even stitches. But I learned, when sewing the tape to the fabric, that the key to getting a good seam around the outside was to sew like I was sewing a zipper (with the needle to the left of the foot) and to turn the glides sideways so I could sew as close to them as possible. Once the curtain was sewn, I could turn the glides the right way to feed the finished curtain onto the glide track.
All total, I made eight of these cab curtains. Two hung on each side above the privacy curtain and the other six hung two to each window of the cab. I had long strips left of the paisley material I used for the dinette, which I used to make the drapery tie backs. Each is attached to itself with Velcro tabs when I want to gather the curtains and let in a little light.
One might say that I haven’t strayed too far from the original olive drab curtains, but I think I’ve updated the cab quite a bit. By adding the paisley tie backs, I think I’ve added a little femininity and a much cleaner look to the décor as well.
Here’s the approximate cost breakdown for the cab curtains:
7 yds. striped upholstery fabric @ $18.00 per yd., Wedgewood….$126.00
7 yds. Drapery lining @ $2.99 yd…. $20.93
2 Spools of Thread, cafe @ $3.49 $ 6.98
4- café serger cones, buff @ $3.49 each….. $13.96
8- 72” @ $6.29 glide tapes (smaller windows can be cut in half, top and bottom)… $50.32
Velcro sticky back tabs for fabric…. $5.49
TOTAL COST OF THIS PROJECT… $223.68
I admit that, although I did find these fabrics on sale, I could have saved more if I had kept my eye out for better sales. But I felt that these fabrics were high quality upholstery fabrics and well worth the money. The cab over curtains were by far the most time consuming part of this remodel, but I surmise that having custom curtains made would have cost me even more.
Note: I didn’t figure in the cost of the paisley tie backs because I used scrap fabric from the dinette.
Thanks for visiting,