After we transformed a linen sheet into a bed skirt, we stumbled on Eileen Fisher’s clever bed skirt made of three adjustable panels of fabric for a more tailored look. You just tuck each panel underneath the mattress at the foot and sides of the bed to adjust it to any length you like up to 21″ (just what we need since the height of our bed occasionally morphs…) But the lengthwise panels were a couple of inches short for our bed AND we weren’t crazy about the oatmeal color (not to mention the price). Googling other versions of the adjustable skirt yielded terrible colors and fabrics but gave us insight into how they work.
We started mulling how to make our own. Then we had a brainstorm.
We remembered how versatile Ikea’s cotton Merete curtains ($39 per pair) were in various spaces we had in the past. The ready-made curtains come in sizes that could easily morph into a bed skirt. Because the grommets at the top of them are meant to loop through a curtain rod, these curtains are wider than normal.
We did some calculations: Our bed was 60″ x 80″. One 98″ x 57″ Merete curtain could be cut lengthwise up the center to make two hemmed bed skirt panels that would amply fit the long span of our bed. The cut sides would be hidden under the mattress so there would be no need to hem them. Since there was 18 inches of extra length, we would fold neat corners at each end
The remaining curtain would become the panel for the bottom of the bed, laid over the two side panels. We wouldn’t even have to cut it, but could just tuck the whole thing under the mattress.
It actually meant us cutting only ONE curtain, and that cut didn’t even have to be perfect. We just folded the curtain lengthwise and cut it up the center. We’d iron or steam out the creases before putting it on the bed…
….Here’s the foot-end corner without the mattress to cover the fold. (We did a sort of inverted hospital corner, where the top flap isn’t angled, but rather squared off. (This video gives the gist.)
Once the mattress and covers are on, the bed skirt looks as good as any we’ve seen, and is a bit more tailored than a big linen sheet draped over the bed frame…
Eh voila: a tailored, adjustable, bed skirt that hides the many items stored under the bed. The essential approach could be easily applied to other kinds of curtains: just make sure to check the sizes as curtain sizes are not standard.
Then start thinking outside the box. West Elm’s Belgian Linen curtains come in 48″ widths and a variety of lengths. Other fabrics might give a nice touch to your room…