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Creative Ideas for Curtain Tiebacks

Linda is a seasoned writer and home-decorating authority. She loves sharing design trends, decor ideas, and useful tips with her readers.

Why spend money on expensive curtain tiebacks like this one, when you can make them yourself?

Why spend money on expensive curtain tiebacks like this one, when you can make them yourself?

Curtain tiebacks have been used throughout history. Their original purpose was strictly functional in nature—to let air and light into a room. While we still use them for that reason, tiebacks have become quite the home decorating accessory. If you have shopped for them recently, I'm sure you've noticed they can be quite expensive—especially for beaded, metal, and glass varieties.

Why pay for someone else’s creativity when you can make curtain tiebacks that are comparable to, and, in most cases, more beautiful than readymade designer versions? In fact, you may already have many of the materials for these projects at home. If not, you can pick them up for a song at local craft stores, tag sales, thrift stores, and antique malls.

Belts

Leather and patent belts lend an air of Ralph Lauren-like sophistication to your curtain panels. All it takes to make them is a sharp pair of shears, glue, plastic rings, heavy-duty thread, an upholstery needle, and cup hooks.

Snip off a section of the belt and “hem” the cut ends by folding and gluing them. Use clothespins to secure the ends until dry. If your belt has a particularly lovely belt buckle, use it as part of the tie back. If not, just go for a plain leather tieback.

On each end, sew on plastic rings with heavy-duty thread. An upholstery needle will make this task much easier. Loop the rings onto cup or plant hooks screwed into the wall.

Consider the belts in your closet as potential curtain tiebacks!

Consider the belts in your closet as potential curtain tiebacks!

Antique Doorknobs

Old doorknobs—glass, crystal, or metal—are ideal for repurposing into curtain holdbacks. You will also need to find backplates on which to mount the doorknobs. The only other materials you’ll need are bits of hardware and copper tubing cut to size with a hacksaw or pipe cutter. If you like, you can paint the copper tubing and backplate to coordinate with the doorknob and your decor.

Place the tubing over the doorknob stem, leaving a portion of the stem exposed on the end. Insert the doorknob stem through the hole on the backplate. Screw an electrical nut onto the exposed stem to hold the doorknob in place. Mount the backplate onto the wall. Voila, you have created vintage doorknob holdbacks for your curtains!

Look for vintage doorknobs complete with backplate for this project.

Look for vintage doorknobs complete with backplate for this project.

Ribbon and Silk Blossoms

Head to the fabric store in search of wide grosgrain or silk ribbon to fashion into floral tiebacks. Then wait until your favorite craft store has a sale on silk flowers. Choose huge blossoms that coordinate with the color palette of your room. Suitable silk blooms for this project include hydrangeas, pompom chrysanthemums, dahlias, and peonies.

Simply snip the flower from the stem. Place a dab of hot glue on the base of the flower and affix it onto the ribbon. Tie the ribbon into a pretty bow and loop it over a cup hook for a springtime curtain tieback appropriate for any time of the year!

Inspiration for your ribbon and silk blossom tiebacks.

Inspiration for your ribbon and silk blossom tiebacks.

Vintage Silverware

The next time you hit up a garage sale or flea market, look for pieces of silver flatware to create stationary holdbacks for your curtains. This one is super easy and is guaranteed to add a sense of elegance to your room!

Forks and spoons are best for this project. Drill a hole approximately an inch from the tip of the handle. Once the hole has been drilled, carefully bend the utensil into a U-shape. Attach your beautiful new silver holdbacks with anchors and screws on each side of your window opening. You can polish the silverware or leave it in its patinated state.

Vintage silverware can be crafted into elegant curtain holdbacks.

Vintage silverware can be crafted into elegant curtain holdbacks.

Teacups

This idea will surely add whimsy to your sheer curtain panels! Use vintage teacups with floral patterns for a feminine take on tiebacks. Look through mom or grandma’s collection of dinnerware, and see if they might be willing to donate a few to the causes.

With an electric drill fitted with a hole cutting bit, make a large hole in the bottom of the cup. Mount a cup hook or decorative plant hook on each side of your window. Thread your curtain panel through the hole, and hang the teacup handle on the wall hook.

This teacup would make a lovely tieback for a  sheer curtain panel.

This teacup would make a lovely tieback for a sheer curtain panel.

Beaded Necklaces

If you have shopped for readymade beaded curtain tiebacks, you know they are very pricey. Get the same upscale look by creating beaded tiebacks from old or new necklaces from your discount retailer, jewelry box, or thrift store. Here are some steps to follow:

  • Choose two similarly colored or identical beaded necklaces.
  • Wire a silver or gold jewelry ring onto the clasp end of the necklace.
  • Wrap the necklace around your curtain panel and fasten the clasp.
  • Screw cup hooks into the side window moldings or wall.
  • Place the jewelry rings onto cup hooks.
This vintage necklace is just the right style to use as a curtain tieback!

This vintage necklace is just the right style to use as a curtain tieback!

Creative Curtain Tiebacks

© 2013 Linda Chechar

Start a Conversation!

Louise89 on March 15, 2020:

Great ideas, thanks!

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on November 02, 2013:

Shyron, so happy you enjoyed this Hub! These ideas are just the tip of the iceberg--a trip to the thrift store or antique mall will unearth a multitude of unique ideas for tiebacks. Let your imagination run wild! :)

Shyron E Shenko from Texas on November 02, 2013:

Hi lindacee, what interesting ideas you have here. My favorite is the teacup.

Voting up, UBI and shared.

Thanks for the unique ideas.

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on May 07, 2013:

Thanks, Blond Logic for reading and sharing. I know what you mean--I've walked into houses and thought I was looking at a Pottery Barn catalog! :)

Mary Wickison from Brazil on May 07, 2013:

How clever some of these ideas are! Not sure I would drill a tea cup though. I love the idea of using the cutlery. One thing I hate is to go into a house that looks like a clone of a showroom. I love originality in decorations. I will be sharing this one.

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on February 12, 2013:

Thank you vespa! I hope you can use them in your new place! :)

Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on February 10, 2013:

These are great ideas for cheap but beautiful curtain tie-backs. I especially like the silverware and beaded necklaces! I hope to use them in our new living space. Thanks!

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on February 10, 2013:

You never know, teaches, there may be a use for them. Good to hear from you. Have a super weekend! :)

Dianna Mendez on February 09, 2013:

I haven't use tieback in this home, I may have to see which ones would benefit from this technique around here. Thanks for the ideas.

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on February 03, 2013:

Thank you for the lovely comment and angels, ps! I think it so fun to take everyday items and turn them into something useful and beautiful! :)

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on February 03, 2013:

How clever these are. Thinking outside of the box produces unusual and creative ideas we can all use.

thanks for sharing this.

Sending Angels to you this afternoon. :) ps

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on February 03, 2013:

Carol, there are so many fun and creative ideas out there for curtain tiebacks. These are my favorites. Thank you for the vote, share and pin! :)

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on February 03, 2013:

Thank you, faythef for stopping by for a read!

Faythe Payne from USA on February 03, 2013:

all great ideas..love the knobs and teacups..

carol stanley from Arizona on February 03, 2013:

Love all your ideas. You are so creative and I always enjoy reading your hubs. Voting up and sharing and pinning.

Linda Chechar (author) from Arizona on February 02, 2013:

You know, Jackie, I used to collect vintage teacups and old doorknobs. But at the time I had no idea they could be used for curtain tiebacks! I could have had quite the cottage industry! Thanks so much for reading and commenting! :)

Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on February 02, 2013:

Some great ideas. I love the doorknobs and the teacups; both are favorites of mine I keep an eye out for but would have never thought of this. Thanks for sharing! ^