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Old 11-03-2008, 06:09 PM   #1
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Sunbrella Fabric for curtains

Has anyone used the Sunbrella fabric with any success in making new curtains? I have original Curtains in my 1977 Excella and my crafty Aunt told me that If i buy the materials she will make me a complete set for free! I was thinking of using the sunbrella fabric, but it appears to be a bit stiffer than typical. Anyone have any pictures of some made with this? Or recommendation to a specific type of sunbrella?



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Old 11-03-2008, 06:44 PM   #2
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I have awnings made with the Sunbrella fabric - it would be much too stiff to be used for curtains. Roll-up shades, maybe - but curtains, no way! Do you have an awning on your trailer? Check out the fabric, it's even stiffer when it's new and in smaller pieces like it would be for curtains - it just won't hang right.

Any kind of fabric you would use for curtains at home could be used in your trailer - just be sure to line them for sun protection.


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Old 11-03-2008, 07:15 PM   #3
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Actually the curtains I made for Safari Tim was made from Sunbrella and I am in the process of making a set for a B-van out of it also. It really isnt as stiff as you would think, or at least the ones I have sewn arent. Check out this website and type Sunbrella in the search. He has several patterns and colors to choose from.
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Old 11-03-2008, 07:17 PM   #4
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I agree with InsideOut. Also the sunbrella material is a !@#!@# to sew. It takes a commercial unit to sew them.

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Old 11-03-2008, 07:20 PM   #5
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I have a Brother sewing machine I got at Walmart and it worked fine for me. You can always request a sample to try on your machine before you buy.
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Old 11-03-2008, 07:42 PM   #6
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We have used indoor/outdoor fabrics similar to Sumbrella on occasion for curtains with no problems. We actually prefer fabrics with more body for curtains.
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Old 11-03-2008, 08:41 PM   #7
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We converted the original interior vinyl accordion screens using a sunbrella fabric. This fabric was soft, slighty transparent and has been in service about four years. It may be too heavy as a window curtain but I think it would work.
Good luck.
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Old 11-03-2008, 10:42 PM   #8
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I think it has some pro's due to the fact is already treated to resist sun damage and will block out the sun. The con would be the fact that it is twice the price than Alt materials and is over kill! (it's main reason for use is it's water proof!). You do need a denium needle and set up is different... prewashing it will make it less stiff!
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Old 11-04-2008, 12:47 AM   #9
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Grades & weights of Sunbrella for curtains

Nate - there are several grades/weights of Sunbrella Fabric. The weight used for awnings starts at a weight of 9.5 ounces per square yard. It is a solution dyed acrylic that "breathes", is highly water resistant, an UV resistant. I have used it in many projects and would recommend it for an interior window covering if is is NOT pleated, i.e. as a flat covering. I have sewn this fabric with an older Elna machine, using the longest stitch length.

Sunbrella makes a furniture weight that is 8.0 ounces per square yard. It is also solution dyed acrylic with UV resistant properties. This weight could be used for interior curtains with minimal pleating, depending on the pattern/weave. I have found that several of the furniture weaves in this collection have a good "hand" that facilitates pleating.

Sunbrella does make a "sunbrella shear" fabric that is specifically designed for drapes.

Buy 1/2 yard as a sample for color as well as a practice sample.

I did a post a while back (will look for it) that has some links for online Sunbrella vendors. In my experience, the cost of Sunbrella is not significantly greater than other types of fabric. Remember, if you do embark on a curtain project, the cost of labor outweighs the cost of material. If you are making curtains and investing your aunt's time, get a fabric that will wear well.

If your aunt is making the curtains, I'd really get her input on what type of fabric that she's willing to sew. Since she's the sewer, she should be able to steer you in the right direction. She's going to have to sit for hours with the fabric, cutting & sewing. When my sister was planning her wedding years ago, she chose a dress pattern for the brides' maids & matron of honor (me) as well as bought the fabric for these dresses without first consulting the seamstress (me). The fabric didn't suit the pattern (was a pretty color though) . . . the dresses happened (as did the wedding) . . .
Show your auntie some pictures of what you have in mind - ask if she has a sample fabric weight for a suggestion.

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