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How to Make Your Own PVC Strip Curtain for Home

F.R.R. Mallory

A PVC strip curtain is an excellent way to control the environment between rooms when one is cooler than another. The strip curtain has been used for years in industrial settings when products are moved from outdoors into a heated or air conditioned space. The strips allow people and machinery to pass from one area to another easily while reducing the air loss of the controlled environment, saving money. Making your own PVC strip curtain for your home can be an excellent solution for basements, garages, three-season rooms or anywhere where you have two different environment needs.

A plastic strip doorway allows air flow to be restricted at the doorway.
  1. Cut a 1-inch lath board 4 inches wider than the doorway. Paint the lath to match your doorway trim. Allow the paint to dry for 4 hours. Center the lath over the doorway trim. Screw the lath into the underlying header studs of the doorway so that the lath is loose. You will tighten it later.

  2. Measure the distance from the top of the lath to the floor. Add 10 inches. This is the length of your PVC fabric strips.

  3. Purchase PVC fabric longer than the length you need at the fabric store. Match the color or design to the room the strips will be facing. The width of the fabric should be wider than the doorway.

  4. Place a cutting mat on the worktable. Use a straight edge and cutting wheel to cut the fabric into 6-inch wide strips. Cut all of the fabric. Draw an arrow on a piece of scrap paper that is 6-inches long. The shaft of the arrow should be 4-inches wide and 4-inches long. The point should be 5-inches wide and 2-inches tall. Cut out your pattern. Place your pattern on one end of a strip with the arrow point at the end. Trace your pattern. Each strip should have the same arrow on one end. Cut out the arrow outline using scissors.

  5. Measure 5 inches below the arrow and cut a horizontal line 5-inches wide across the 6-inch width of the strip, leaving 1/2 inch on either side of the cut. The arrow will fit over the lath and through the slot to hang. Repeat for all of the strips. Test fit one strip. Mark the strip where it touches the floor.

  6. Fold the bottom edge of the strip at the mark toward the back side of the fabric. You should have folded 2 inches of fabric. Trim off any excess beyond 2 inches. Sew a 1/4-inch allowance seam up the side and across the width of the strip. Pour play sand into the pocket until it is half full. Sew the remaining side seam. Repeat for each strip. Hang your strips on the lath until there are enough to cover the doorway. The sand will hold the strips down.

  7. Screw the lath to the wall. Make up the remaining strips as replacement strips. Store them in a location close to the doorway.