Instructions to Make Roman Blinds

Written by donna mcfadden
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Tired of ordinary curtains? Jazz up your window areas with Roman blinds. Roman blinds add a touch of sophistication and style. They are elegant enough to be used as a stand-alone window treatment and equally attractive as part of a window ensemble. Roman shades come in a variety of styles. In just a few hours, you can make a Roman shade in a size, style and colour to bring your dull window area to life.

Material and Fabric Selection

Gather all of your materials before beginning your project. To make a set of standard Roman blinds, you need fabric and lining, wood or plastic dowels, ½-inch plastic rings, nylon cording, fabric fastener, a wall cleat, screw eyelets and a wooden batten. Measure the length and width of your window to figure out how much of each item you need.

The number of plastic dowels needed depends on the length of the window. You will place the dowels an equal distance apart down the length of the shade with the first dowel placed 2 inches from the top. The last dowel should be placed about 4 to 6 inches from the bottom of the shade. The width of each dowel should be at least 1 inch shorter than the width of your shade. The batten should be in a length equal to the width of the window.

Determine the amount of nylon cording needed by adding the length and width of the window area. Double the width measurement and add it to the length measurement. Multiply this number by three. Purchase enough fabric fastener to extend across the width of the window. The number of plastic rings needed is dependent on the width and length of the shade and the number of dowels used. The rings should be placed 2 inches from each side edge where the dowel is positioned and at equal intervals of 8 to 16 inches across the width of the dowel pocket.

Choose light- to medium-weight fabrics. Heavy fabrics are difficult to sew and to close and hold in place. Add interest and style by choosing a lining fabric in a different but coordinating shade or pattern. Purchase enough fabric to cover the width and length of the window plus 5 inches to accommodate the seams (1 inch on each side and bottom and 2 inches on the top). You need the same amount of lining material plus ½ yard to make the casings for the dowels.

Cutting and Sewing Tips

Start with fabric that is smooth and free of wrinkles. Iron fabric to remove any seams caused by the folding of the fabric on the bolt. Press the fabric again after sewing the shade and lining piece together and before marking the position for the dowel rods. Sew a second seam in the salvage area close to the first seam for extra durability. Trim the seam close to the second stitching before turning and pressing.

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