DIY Lined Shower Curtain

By Kate Riley January 27, 2014

I love having a cat, ours is a keeper with a great personality but the one thing I wish we didn’t have to deal with is a litter box. Ugh. So I’ve hidden it in the hall bathroom shower for over a year and I just can’t take it anymore. Besides, we needed to reclaim that shower for the kids turning 8 and 10 who have been showering in our bathroom for too long, and for guests that come stay with us.

I wanted to make a shower curtain for the space that was taller than standard 72 x 72” curtains using my new Dewdrop fabric – now a new one it hangs at 86” tall on a new higher rod in the hall bathroom.

lined shower curtain


This is a view of a space I’ve never shared before mostly because it wasn’t that exciting, just a toilet and shower and old curtain rod but I do love the little glass tiles set into the floor – a project we completed before I even started blogging. There’s that pesky litter box…

bathroom before


The process of sewing your own shower curtain is like sewing one giant pillow cover, but with a seam down the middle. I used two 88” lengths of basic lightweight cotton to line the curtain and my dewdrop fabric for the outside pattern. The first thing you do is sew together the length of the liner.

sew liner together

Repeat the same process with your pretty fabric, if it has a pattern, align the repeat and pin together for a less visible seam. Since the curtain remains gathered when not in use it’s not noticeable. 


sew patterened fabric

Flip the liner and patterned fabric inside out just like you would with a pillow cover, pin them together and sew three edges (the top and sides) but leave the bottom hem for later.

Turn fabric right side out, and use a kit to install grommets along the top of your shower curtain. I found these at Joanns but you can also find them at home improvement stores.

grommet kit package


Follow the instructions on the kit to install them, you need something strong and solid beneath when pounding them in, choose any hard surface that won’t chip or dent.

grommet kit


Use the same amount of grommets as your liner (typically 12) equally distanced apart. The good news is that shower curtain liners are available in longer lengths of 84” and 96” at places like Bed, Bath & Beyond for those like me who prefer taller shower curtains.

hang curtain on rings


Once the grommets are installed, hang the curtain up on your rod so you can hem it to the proper length.  That porcelain tile you see is from Lowes – I bought it five or six years ago and installed it in this pattern. The last time I was there I saw they still carry both the blue glass tiles and the ‘Rialto White’ squares, they must be popular. :)

hem bottom of curtain


Use pins to mark the bottom where you want the curtain to hang, then return to the sewing machine to complete that bottom edge. I flipped it inside out to sew most of the bottom, allowing 10 inches to flip it right side out, then finished up the bottom with a stitch close to the edge, one that no one will see since it hangs at the bottom of the shower curtain.

bottom edge


stitch along bottom


And that’s pretty much it, now I just need to paint the walls inside this shower/toilet space a lighter color, probably the same Ben Moore ‘Tranquility’ on the walls next to the vanity and cabinets (you can see better images of the white painted bathroom cabinets and vanity here).

diy lined shower curtain


Anyone else ever stitched up your own custom shower curtain? Did you follow the same process? Got any ideas on WHERE to relocate the cat’s litter box? I’m thinking the garage but that involves installing a pet door. I welcome your cat box solutions …




  1. Looks great!

    In my last 2 apartments, I’ve just kept the litter box in the bathroom on the floor, but out of the way of foot traffic. I wasn’t so crazy about the idea at first but I had no other option. I use pine litter and scoop every time the cat poops, so it’s not really all that unsightly or stinky. Now I actually prefer that to a hidden box which I tended to neglect.

  2. When we had a cat, we cut a little kitty door into a closet and located the litter box in there. I love kitties, but hate litter boxes too.

  3. So laughing right now! I’ve made my own shower curtains before, but I’ve never tried the grommets I’ve seen in JoAnns. Good to know they are so easy and I love the look without having to use clips.
    But I’m not laughing about that! The cat litter box in the shower…! It is so hard to find a spot for that! I picture your house so perfect, it’s fun to know you have a problem like that. We personally used our hall bath for my husbands stinky workout clothes until I could launder them; son has also always bathed in our bathroom. I was horrified! Thanks for sharing and being so normal.

    • Soooo not perfect Laura, I’m glad you got a giggle out of it! In fact I should do a post about just how NOT perfect it is around here, all the paint or trim that needs touched up, things that are breaking, hodge podge solutions that need a fixin’ that I have yet to tackle, piles of what the? in random corners (laundry/dishes/stuff) and other things that gather quickly when you live with pets and kids – yep we’re VERY normal. I don’t photograph that stuff very often because it ain’t pretty but perhaps I should more :)

  4. Kate, I love your new shower curtains! I might ask my daughter to help me make some for our main bathroom with a matching window curtain-sweet. Thank you.

    In regard to your litter box, I don’t have a cat, I remember reading A Bowl Full of Lemon’s blog and she had located her litter box in her laundry room and was pleased with her set up. It might give you another option. Good luck!

  5. I love your litter box-in-the-shower idea, but what do you do with the excess litter that winds up in the tub? I can’t imagine that you could wash it down, right? Wouldn’t it clump?
    And your shower curtain is amazing too! ;)

    • We never rinsed it down the drain Jen for that very reason! We keep the drain closed and use a broom and dustpan when necessary to sweep up any litter that ends up outside the box. :)

  6. Toilet training. Seriously. My two are completely toilet trained and they use any bathroom in the house they happen to be close to as long as the seat is down and the lid is up. It took about 5 weeks to completely 100% train them and now they’re absolutely perfect. I just make a round of the house to check and see if anything needs flushing before guests come over.

    • I never even thought of training Kara, but I do know it can be done, great tip, thank you!

  7. I’ve seen online enclosed litter boxes that are meant to be placed in the garage, attached to the inner wall, with a cat door leading into the box through the wall from inside the house.

    Like this:

    I think there is even an actual cat litter box that is designed to be used like this and comes with a door/tunnel to install in a wall.

    It gets it out of the house, but might make it harder to remember to clean it.

  8. For the litter box, I actually use the cabinet under the bathroom sink. I put a piece of paper in the cabinet door hinge so it’s open enough for the cat to enter. Or you could remove the door and cover with a little curtain. I put a rug by the litter box inside the cabinet to catch stray litter. I also put gel air freshener in the cabinet to block odors.

  9. My bathroom has a vanity area between sinks where you could put a chair and sit and do your hair/makeup. I stuck the litter box under there, made a cute gathered skirt and hung it on a tension rod. Voila – cat box is out of the way, unseen, and the vanity area still looks cute. Plus, our cat loves it because he has his own little private “bathroom.” There’s also room under there to keep the scoop and that stuff, so it’s extremely functional.

  10. I never thought about actually sewing them together! I’ve always just hung them together one in front of the other. Great idea Kate!

  11. LOVE your shower curtain! What a great project. It looks perfect in your bathroom. I love those tiles as well! Great job! :)

  12. I have made many shower curtains over the years. I usually use decorator weight fabric and I use a French seam or a flat felled seam so you don’t see any seam on the inside of the curtain. I have never lined the curtain. I have only used button holes for the shower rings, and that seems to work. I buy a nylon liner to hang with the curtain. I line up the buttonholes with the holes in the liner so they can hang together. I think I looked at a shower curtains made by Waverly, and just copied the way they hemmed the sides and bottom.

  13. Good work on the shower curtain. Sometimes you have to do your own thing to get what you want. I visited Universal Studios last year and thought it was great fun, and the kids loved it. The crowds can be a bit overwhelming, and it helps to get the ticket that allows you to go to the shorter lines. Also, staying on the property makes everything much easier.

  14. So I don’t have a cat anymore (mine was 19 when she died a couple years ago) but I also just kept it in my bathroom since my apt is pretty small. However, have you tried the Tidy Cats Pellet/pad system (it’s the Breeze system)? At risk of sounding like a crazy cat lady it is legitimately awesome. You do have to buy the cat pan with it but it has a cover so you don’t have to stare at it so much. There’s a tray that slides in the bottom with an absorbant pad you can just dump in garbage when needed and the pellets are SO much easier to clean up than regular litter. So there is my little pitch! Also the shower curtain is very pretty!

  15. My brother was pretty successful training his cats to use the toilet. He floated a plastic dish of kitty litter in the bowl so the cats would follow the scent to the toilet. Eventually, he removed the kitty litter. Good luck!

  16. I agree there really is no good place for the litter box. If you happen to have a utility tub in your laundry room, a standard litter box fits perfectly underneath it. I was so happy when I figured this out. Then I got the idea to sew a pleated linen “skirt” to put around the tub so now I don’t have to even see the litter box and kitty likes having her privacy when she goes. A win-win solution:-). Growing up my mom always kept our cats litter box in the laundry room too. It was out of the way, at least out of the kids’ way but not too far that it became a temptation to skip out on cleaning it regularly. Good luck and great job on your shower curtain!

  17. Love that shower curtain. I made one years ago when the kids were preschool age that had little fishes on them. Grommets would have been nice. I used button holes on the top. (I also cut out little fishes from the scraps and used liquid starch to adhere them to the bathroom walls.)

    When we had a cat, I made a custom bench out of an old headboard that cleared the height of the litter box. We had one that had a top. The bench wound up being maybe an inch higher than normal seat height. I then skirted the bottom of the bench to hide the box. I think the cat appreciated the additional privacy to his commode. This bench resided in our mudroom.

  18. We have the BEST cat in the land. He only goes outside. We have an attached garage that you get to through the laundry room so we have a dog/cat door on the door there and another one out the garage. The only time he’s ever used a cat box was if he was sick and then we put it in the laundry room. Seriously, he’s awesome. :)

  19. Pretty shower curtain! As for the litter box, I copied something I saw Nate Berkus do several years ago. He cut a small arched opening in a base cabinet and put the box inside the cabinet. Mine is in a half bath off the garage and laundry room. I was lucky to be able to locate the pet door on the side and I can access it for cleaning by opening the cabinet door. No one is the wiser. A mud room would also be a great spot for this.

  20. In my old apartment, there was an area in the kitchen that was open under the counter and next to the sink. It had a curtain rod with curtain installed there and the floor was tiled there like the whole kitchen and it ended up being a weirdly perfect spot for my cat box. It was hidden so no one could see it and I kept it as clean as a litter box can be so no one smelled it. It was wide enough for a large litter box and the extra litter next to it with the scoop there too. My apartment was small so I didn’t have many options and that was the best one. My girl cat never went outside but after she passed away, I ended up with two male cats who were inside/outside cats and they both preferred to not use the litter box if they could go outside so I rarely had to clean it then. In my old house, the perfect spot ended up being the laundry room next to the washer and dryer. We also had a dog then so we had to figure out a solution to him not eating the litter. I really wanted one of those fancy pretty wooden tables where they have an opening for the box but it was too costly. So I bought a cheap plastic Rubbermaid lidded tote and had my fiancé cut an opening in it. Cats could use it but the dog couldn’t get in there. I kept the lid on it for a long while but eventually had to take the lid off because I realized one cat wouldn’t use it with the lid. Sorry for the long explanation!

  21. Man, I would LOVE to make my own shower curtain! Our ‘master’ bath only has a shower stall and it’s near impossible to find stall-sized curtains that aren’t hideous. I definitely settled with the one we have now and I’m always wishing for something different.

    However, I couldn’t follow your description at all! :-( I know this is less a tutorial post and more of a ‘look what I did’ post and I fully respect that, but maybe if you could be so kind as to point me to a more tutorial type post? I’m pretty decent with a sewing machine but I have to admit I had to read ‘align the repeat’ a couple of times before the lightbulb went off as to what you were referring to.

    As always, great work and I have no litter box advice. I have a 100-lb dog and I battle dog hair every day of my life. The things we do for our pets! :-)

  22. May I just say that your fabrics, the ones you designed, are just fabulous?

    I love the shower curtain – it’s beautiful :)

    As for the kitty box…pinterest has soo many ideas for how to disguise those icky boxes. Everything from end tables to dressers to tv-units to pet doors – there are some very good ideas…and attractive ones..that truly disguise this necessary ickiness. For those especially in condos or very small spaces, there are ‘out in the open but you’ll never know’ ideas, which is probably what you’re looking for! (maybe something along this line?

    • Thank you Kimberly, and EVERYONE for your suggestions, I can’t wait to discuss these with Matt and decide on a solution, you are all so kind and helpful !

  23. I also had to make my own shower curtain. I moved into a century home that had a cast iron claw foot tub in the bathroom and 12 foot ceilings. There wasn’t a shower but we had it fitted out with the English style hoop. The grommets are pretty easy to do.

  24. I love the colors in your bathroom. The shower curtain has a modern beachy feel to it. I have made shower curtains before but never lined them. To add my 2 cents to replies on litter box. I removed my 2 bathroom cabinet doors under the sink. Placed litter rug on bottom of shelf (it keeps the litter from being tracked out). Placed a higher side box but opened on the shelf. Sewed the classy curtain to run across wall to wall and installed a tension rod. No one knows there is a litter box in my bathroom. Everyone think I’m so smart (and creative decorator)! The very best thing I have done for “my boy” and for me. P. S. All supplies fit under sink plus my cleaning supplies!

  25. Yeah, imagine living in a NYC apartment. There is NO good place for a litter box (and I have a pretty big apartment by NYC standards). When my cat died, I didn’t replace her for that reason.

    The garage sounds like a good option!

  26. I have done this before and it is very easy to do . I buy a king size flat sheet (good quality) and the extra fabric allows you to take the curtain all the way to the ceiling which looks really great in a bathroom of any size!

  27. I have never made a lined shower curtain, though I did make a custom shower curtain for my daughter a few years ago when she moved into her first off-campus apartment. She couldn’t find one that matched or coordinated with her choice of bright teal towels. I wonder about the weight…between the extra weight of the lining and the extra fabric due to the length, I’d be concerned about it causing the rod to fall. Is your rod installed in some special way or is it just an off-the-shelf tension shower curtain rod?

    As for the liter box…that’s one of the reasons I am not a cat person. (Sorry)

  28. I think the convenience of having the litter box out of the way in your garage would be worth the pain of installing a cat door.
    We don’t have one, and I hated that in my old apartments I had to keep the litter in the bathroom. (The feeling of stray litter underfoot. . . gross!
    So in this house I built a work table / wrapping station near my laundry nook and installed a curtain in the front. It was win/win – I got a work space for folding laundry / wrapping things and the cats’ boxes were hidden.

  29. Never having a “permanent” litter box, and only using on “special” occasions, since the kitties go outside, I am assuming you cat is an indoor only cat correct? The best advice is to install a cat door and put the litter box in the garage, get the smell and the “look” out of the house. They are pretty easy to install. We have one that our cats use to go outside that runs off their ID chip. Since yours would be going to the garage (no worries of strays or other animals using it to come in the house) you can use a fairly simple one. Personally I am not a fan of having a litter box in the house, no matter what you do or what type of box you use they smell. If you need to keep the litter box in the house, mudroom/laundry would be the best. BTW love your shower curtain :)

  30. Our litter boxes are in the basement. Our basement is kind of chopped up and only have one really useable room – my husbands mancave. It works for us, but not my favorite place for them. We thought about putting them in the garage, but knew that would mean installing a kitty door. We worried about installing one in the fireproof door. Would insurance void your claim if a fire happen in the garage because you put a hole in the door? Something to look into.

  31. Love the shower curtain! So bright and airy and the fabric is just beautiful!

    For the litter box situation, we put an inexpensive cabinet in the laundry room and installed a cat door in the door of it. Painted the whole thing white and called it good. Works for us!

  32. The litter box has always been an issue for me. I used to keep mine in an additional shower also and placed an old rug underneath it that stuck out a bit. The rug would catch any additional litter that would get thrown out by the cat’s and also what was on their feet when they jumped out. I would take the rug outside and shake it out when it needed it. It covered the drain and kept the bottom of the shower from getting too messy. It worked great! In my current home, I have it in the laundry room (I also get tired of not being able to use the shower and having to relocate the box when guests would come). It’s underneath a table I use for folding clothes, etc. (the table is bar height) and is hidden by the waste basket in front and a stool. I have an old fashioned rolling laundry basket on one side and a vintage looking milk delivery box on the other (which stores the cat’s dry food, which I also have on the table). The cat can easily jump onto to the table to eat from the milk box. It works perfectly for the cat and more importantly, keeps the dog out of the cat’s food and the litter box.

  33. I have made a few shower curtains. I don’t line them but instead of rings to hang I use a rod pocket to shirr it on the rod. My current one has an attached valance as well then I hang a second tension rod inside the outer one to hang my vinyl liner on works great. Used decorator fabric and seemed up the middle and it isn’t seen when it’s shirred on the rod.
    We keep our cat boxes in the utility or laundry room. I have placed them inside cabinets before too. Litter is a pain, I agree. I wish I had toilet trained our kitties.

  34. We had three kitties at one time – our last passed a few years ago at 20 1/2. We kept our litter box in the laundry room. Some kitties are very particular and don’t like change – we had one of those. If we changed litter or tried to move the litter box – she protested by not using it. So keep that in mind if you move the litter box – I don’t know your kitties personality.

    Your shower curtain is beautiful – I have sewn many over the years but have never lined them. I used french seams and buttonholes on the top.

  35. No Kate! Please don’t “photograph ‘that stuff’ more often”!! LOL I love all of your pretties!! I have enough of ‘that stuff’ to look at around here! Your blog takes me away!!

    I used grommets on a white vintage matelasse bedspread, turned shower curtain! They are fun to use.
    LOVE your fabrics Kate!

  36. Beautiful! sorry, no help on the litter box! If it wasn’t for that tiny detail, I would have another cat. Hate those boxes!

  37. Beautiful fabric! I always love your clean bright combinations. I visited the fabric site, but I can’t find the width of the fabric. Help?

    Thank you so much!

  38. I once made a shower curtain out of a bedspread that I found. Just removed all the inner stuff and made the type you insert a tension rod.
    As for a litter box, also used the bathroom, but it has a small alcove and I put a small curtain up so that the kitty would have privacy.

  39. Great instructions for the shower curtain and your work always top notch. Good thing that cat box is history too. Can’t stand cats in the house. They are best kept outside to catch those annoying chipmunks.

  40. I hate litter boxes! But love my cats. Even if they don’t always reciprocate that feeling. I keep mine in the laundry room but I was able to take a desk and put it into a closet space. Under the part of the desk where a chair would normally go, I put an enclosed large litter box. In order to fully and successfully hide the nasty thing I made little curtains to hang over it. The cats can still get in if it’s closed but if you are folding your fluffy towels you can’t see into the nasty thing. Love the curtains! Thanks for the inspiration!


    meaghan at

    ps. if that description sucks.. pics here–>

  41. I love the paint color in the tub/toilet room just as it is! The dark complements the pale colors in your beautiful shower curtain! Ironically, we just redid our bathroom, and the only thing left to do is the shower curtain! I haven’t been able to find what I want, and yours is perfect! I think I’ll have to buy some of your fabric and make my own! Thanks, Kate! (P.S. Our litter box sits in our basement laundry room. Yucky no matter where it is!)

  42. I’m late to comment but I have another cat box suggestion for you. I keep mine in the living room! I originlly saw this on HausPanther so I can’t take credit for the idea. I used an IKEA BESTA, one side is for three letterbox and the other is the walkway plus extra storage. Even though it’s in my living room there is no smell and people are always surprised to learn I keep her box in there. I’ve been using it for over a year with no problems. Good luck with your conundrum.

    Here’s the link to the original idea:

  43. i like your soft sea glass colors. Very pretty. i redid my shower curtain recently after visiting a sweet little shop in Marietta, OH. It’s all white with row after row of ruffles on the lower half. I didn’t use grommets though, I sewed button holes and a very stiff interfacing.
    We took the plunge and installed a pet door so that the litter box could be in the back porch/mudroom. Our cat Zoe had her own little “kitty apartment’! I’ve never regretted it until now that she has since passed away & we’re stuck with a pet door. Who knows, maybe some day we’ll find a new kitty to rescue.

  44. Love the new shower curtain- it’s such a great design and colors!
    BTW: I never know what to do with a litter box either, but our kitty is so cute that we just deal with the inconvenience of finding a place stash it. In one apartment, we had it in a cubby in a never used place with a curtain in front of it, and in another we took the door to a closet of the hinges to stick the box in there. I recommend never putting it in a carpeted area (sneaky cats can find ways to screw up carpets; unfortunately, our apartment at the time was almost entirely carpeted -_-). One of the things we loved about our house is that we have a huge laundry room, so it’s just sitting in there for now, but eventually, we plan build a little hideaway area for it to keep the dust at a minimum in the area. Good luck finding a place for it!

  45. Kristen!!! What an awesome hack!! I can’t wait to share this link with my friends that have cats!! Ingenious! ;)

  46. I would be interested to hear how the grommets hold up over time, specifically wondering if they will rust in a damp area. I sew quite a bit, but buttonholes terrify me, and grommets are a great solution for making your own shower curtain.

    As for the cat, we are glad to have an unfinished basement, and the boxes are down there, with a cat door. My second choice would be laundry room, if you do not have a basement. A cat door might be harder to install if your door from house to garage is metal.

  47. Vets are not big fans of toilet training cats. Apparently they need that scratching action as part of the process. If it works , great, if not, lots of problems. My sister tried it and her poor cat got so confused that he took his business to the bedcovers. It was weeks before she could get him back to the litterbox.

    I didn’t see mention of a shower curtain liner. Are you including one?

  48. I love your new shower curtains. I did something similar a few years back as I couldn’t get a shower curtain in the colour I wanted. The fabric I chose had vertical stripes, so I sewed two large pieces together and I made them longer than a standard shower curtain. This allowed me to raise the shower curtain rod, and I had a second one at the regular height to use a plastic liner.

    As for the person who asked about the grommets rusting – I was going to use grommets like the ones used here but the lady in the fabric store convinced me to buy these other grommets in plastic (that come in colours that look like metal). These were cheap and super easy to use. You just lined them up where you wanted them to go, use a pencil to trace the inside circle of the grommet, and cut a little slit in the fabric in that slot. Then you just put one piece of the grommet set on the top, one underneath the slit and push them together. Bingo! Super easy and mu curtain has been up for a few years (and gets washed at least once a month, no problem!

  49. Hi Kate, really like the curtain. I am a bit confused, you talk about the liner, and then using a longer liner from Bed Bath & Beyond. I am wondering, did you line the curtain with fabric, and then use a second plastic/waterproof liner, and if so, can you purchase the plastic/waterproof liners in a longer length than 72 inches? Thanks in advance for your information!

  50. Regarding where to put the cat litter box, I laughed when I read your comment because I had the same dilemma once. The box ended up moving from place to place for a while until it find it’s permanent spot right under the laundry tub and it’s convenient there. I even put a boot tray under the box as a runway, to minimize the scattered litter on the floor. What’s nice too is that it’s handy to the tub for the complete wash I give it once in a while.

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