How to Design and Sew a Valance

sewn scalloped black, white, and gray valance hanging over a window

Valances give color to a room without blocking the natural light. This post will teach you how to design and sew a valance. Hence, I like being able to make my own valances because I can select the fabric and create the design. This also allows me to customize it to fit my window. I made this valance for our kitchen window.

I am grateful to my mother who taught me how to sew. This skill has served me well! If you don’t know how to sew, it is never too late to learn!
I took these pictures after I made this valance (prior to starting my blog). However, I will explain the steps I took.

Selecting Fabric

I purchased this fabric from Hobby Lobby. I like this fabric because of the colors. Our kitchen is open to our dining and living area, so I wanted something that blended well with other colors and patterns.

The underside is solid black fabric. Like my burlap valance, I hung this to barely cover the top of the window trim. I don’t want to block the natural light coming through the window.

Making a Pattern Using Tissue Paper

For this curtain, I made my pattern out of tissue paper. The experience was a little trial and error, but I was pleased with the result. Once I figured out the curve part, I replicated this two more times (for a total of three curves) using the tissue paper. The same is true for the two tails on each end. Once I figured out the shape, I duplicated it using tissue paper.

Some quick math for your reference:

    • Top width of curtain = 4’3″ (51″)
    • Bottom width of the curtain (tip to tip as the longest part) = 6’9″ (81″)
    • Window width (not including trim) = 30.5″
    • Window width including trim = 37.75″


Notice the four black loops at the top. Below is the back of the finished curtain. I paid attention to the pattern in the fabric. Because the valance is so long, I had to use two pieces and match the pattern. Below, is a close-up picture of where I sewed two pieces together. I thought I did a decent job of matching up the design. Yea for me!

Below is another picture of where I matched up (sewed) the pattern. This is the center of the valance.

If you look closely, you can see the seam in the middle of the curtain. I used a tension curtain rod that is held into place by the two kitchen cabinets. I then had to play with this to get it to hang the way I wanted it. Notice that I tucked the two ends into the edge of the window trim. I was pleased with the final outcome.

Click HERE to learn how to sew a burlap valance.

Is there a window in your house where you could add a valance?

Let me know if you have any questions about how to design and sew a valance. by commenting below.

Happy designing and sewing!

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