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How many yards of fabric do I need for 9 panels 72 inches wide by 64 inches high?

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You need to provide more information about the fabric, specifically the width of the goods and the direction of the pattern. That's the short and unsatisfying answer. The long answer: IF the pattern on your fabric is able to be run horizontally, and IF the fabric width is at least 69" (most upholstery fabric is 54" wide, and apparel fabric is only 48" wide), your panels will be fairly simple to figure. You can use a full width, turned sideways, and simply count the number of finished panels (9) times the finished panel width (72 inches=6 feet=2 yards). This simple arrangement would therefore require 18 yards of fabric. Also, professional designers always order at least 15% "overage", especially on custom or hard-to-find fabrics, to allow for matching patterns and to insure against coming up short. Fabric colors vary depending on the days they are manufactured, and even the slightest difference in dyes will show up glaringly if you have to go back for more fabric. Unfortunately, I doubt your chosen fabric is made that wide. You will have to make a diagram, showing the direction of the pattern and the number of pieces you'll have to stitch together to make the panel size (don't forget your seam allowances and hem/pocket depths). Fabric can be expensive, and it is not very forgiving of cutting mistakes. Another thought: the vendor of the fabric should provide a measuring and estimating service. This may or may not be completely reliable (they are trying to sell as much fabric as they can), but it can confirm your own estimations. A few tips: never place a seam down the center of a panel; instead, split one piece and sew to both sides of a full width centered on the panel. If your panels are to be used as window dressings, the daylight will almost always show every seam you sew. Never use silk in window dressings without protecting it from sunlight, which will deteriorate all your hard work. Use blackout lining or a UV-protecting coating. Silk will also deteriorate in saltwater atmospheres. Don't forget to check out your local library for some of the wonderful how-to books on crafting beautiful window fashions. Good luck!
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