Facebook Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram Tiktok Icon YouTube Icon Headphones Icon Favorite Navigation Search Icon Forum Search Icon Main Search Icon Close Icon Video Play Icon Indicator Arrow Icon Close Icon Hamburger/Search Icon Plus Icon Arrow Down Icon Video Guide Icon Article Guide Icon Modal Close Icon Guide Search Icon

Conversational Threads

Ballgown Drapes

lendarose | Posted in Quilting and Home Decor on

I am interested in finding details on how to make what I call “Ballgown Drapes”.  I see them usually in decorator homes.  They are usually made of silk and have what I think of as ruching or puffing along the top.  I think they are gathered onto a rod.  It appears that they are have a deep pocket which is caught up and puffed out.  Has anyone every made these?  Do they have interlining as the “stuffing” to make them stand out…do they use netting?   I would love to have more directions on how to make these beautiful drapes.


  1. EileenB5 | | #1

    I bought some of these several years ago and had them installed.  (I have learned you can only do so much in life and I have learned to pick my projects!)  If you can imagine a long lined piece of fabric with rod pockets on each long side.  One was deeper than the other or the Top.  The fabric was nearly 3 times the length of the rod.  It was actually gathered on two rods with the Top being at the front and the other at the back so the fabric formed a sling. The installer then stuffed this sling with wadded up balls of tissue paper to hold out the poof.  Hope this helps.


    1. lendarose | | #2

      Thanks!  It does give me an idea of how to proceed.

  2. mem1 | | #3

    They use poliester batting.

    1. User avater
      jeanne_dehart | | #4

      Ballgown draperies as you described can be made several ways.

      There are excellent instructions for this "Puff-ball heading" on page 46 in Caroline Wrey's book "Complete Curtainmaking Course." ISBN0879518030.   These are the easiest to follow.

      When making draperies with silk fabric it is recommended to use an interlining between the face fabric (silk) and the lining.  This will add body, a luxurious look and will protect the silk even more from the sun.  Interlining is a 54" flannel and there are several weights available.  You do not want to use polyester dacron at all.

      To get the full flounce at the bottom, add 2-6 extra inches to the finished length of the panels.  Add a small pocket to bottom hem and run a cord thru.  Gather up and tie off.  A pretty ribbon looks nice thru the pocket.  Then as you hang the draperies, you will need to fuss to get that ballgown effect.  I recommend only adding the extra length if your panels are stationary and will not open and close.

      Good luck

      Edited 5/4/2005 11:55 pm ET by Jeanne

  3. alotofstitches | | #5

    You say "drapes" but if you are referring to a top treatment then perhaps I can help you.  Mine were made from a decorator fabric  and lined with drapery lining--both of these items help to make the fabric pouff better.  Treatment was 2.5 times window width, with a ruffle or "header" 3 inches deep above the rod pocket.  I used a plain white sash rod that extends 2 1/2"-3" from bracket.  treatment is shirred onto the rod and the length is based on how much of the window you want the top treatment to cover, typically about 1/4 of window length e.g. a standard window  is say 36" wide by 48" long.  You'd mount the bracket so the header is above window opening but treatment hangs down to cover 12" of opening.  The pouff is created by another rod pocket on bottom and that straight sash rod is mounted so that treatment hangs down and goes back up under the front fabric to make a pouff.  Mine were full enough and fabric had enough body that I didn't use tissue to pouff it.

    1. lendarose | | #6

      Thanks, Liz for your very helpful information.  I think I can do this!  I just kept thinking that there was a different way to do i.  But you are the second person who has responded with similar directions.

This post is archived.

Threads Insider

Get instant access to hundreds of videos, tutorials, projects, and more.

Start Your Free Trial

Already an Insider? Log in

Conversational Threads

Recent Posts and Replies

  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |

Threads Insider Exclusives

View All
View All