We had a ton of work done to our kitchen (see here) when we were moving in, but for some reason I never updated our curtains. I would always look but never found exactly what I wanted so I keep the old ones up. Here is our before with the old curtains, not bad they just didn't work with everything else we put in.
With a flour sack towel from the Dollar Tree I created this.
Here is how I did it
I started with the flour sack towel which is 28x29 inches. The good thing about using this is there is already a hemmed edge so it cuts down on some steps. The fabric on this is a little thin, If I had to do this over I would probably use two towels so I could double it over so it was a little thicker.
The first thing I did was cut it in half so I had two long rectangles
Then I cut one of the rectangles in half again to be my outside pieces.
Next lay out your large rectangle (the piece you didn't cut in half a second time) with the good side facing up, this is the center of your valance. Then lay your two smaller pieces over top to pin in place. You will want these to be good side down with the edge hem at the bottom. Basically you are creating a super long rectangle.
Here are the pieces lined up
Now pin them together so you can sew. I used a half inch seam allowance on mine.
Press the seams open so its nice and flat for the next step.
Now you have to sew a pocket to put it on a curtain rod. I made my pocket by putting a 2 inch fold at the raw edge of the fabric. Pin it in place and you are ready to sew the last part.
I hung mine up before I decided on what to use to gather them. The possibilities you could create are really endless with so many choices of ribbon and fabric out there. I was going to use some ribbon but didn't have any that was thick enough so I ended up using some chocolate brown fabric that I had from a fat quarter. It ended up being the perfect length to fit around. I just have it pinned in place right now because I would like to find some printed fabric with gray, brown and black in it to go with the rest of our kitchen.