How to Make Roll Up Blinds

Written by alison zirbel
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Roll up blinds are a cost-effective and practical option for window coverings. They are versatile and can fit into any decor style. They work well on small windows often found in a bathroom or kitchen. As noted by alternative-windows.com, "Roller blinds use a minimal amount of fabric, lay flat against the window and roll up to let a maximum amount of light into the room."

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • Roll up blinds kit
  • Power drill or screwdriver
  • Fabric and backing
  • Scissors or rotary cutter
  • Sewing machine
  • Iron
  • Glue

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Instructions

    Purchasing the Roller Blind Kit

  1. 1

    Measure the height and width of your window. Most roller shades look best with an inside mount, so measure inside the window frame.

  2. 2

    Buy a roller blind kit at your local home improvement store and have it shortened as necessary to fit the measurements of your window.

  3. 3

    Attach the brackets included in the roller blind kit to the inside of the window frame using a power drill or screwdriver.

    Preparing the Fabric

  1. 1

    Visit your local fabric store to find the fabric design that's right for your room. When deciding how much fabric to buy, use the window measurements from earlier, but include an additional eight inches for the height and four inches for the width.

  2. 2

    Purchase the backing fabric in the same measurements as the decorative fabric. A hefty stiff fabric that will block light is an ideal choice.

  3. 3

    Use a sharp pair of scissors or rotary cutter to get the fabric and/or backing to the appropriate width. Make sure to include an extra 3/4" to 1" on the width to allow for at least a 1/4" hem and full coverage of the roller. It's important that you cut the fabric after washing and stiffening (if stiffening was necessary) because it may shrink with treatment.

  4. 4

    Use a sewing machine to sew the front and back pieces of fabric together. Hem what will be the side and bottom edges of the blind with the front sides of each fabric facing each other. Leave the top unhemmed. After you're done hemming, turn the fabric right side out and iron to get a stiff edge.

    Attach the Fabric to Roller Kit

  1. 1

    Use a glue or spray adhesive to attach the unhemmed side of the fabric blind to the roller.

  2. 2

    Allow the glue to dry for several hours.

  3. 3

    Insert the roller into the brackets installed in the window frame.

Tips and warnings

  • An even easier way to customise roller blinds for your room is to buy basic white roller blinds in the size needed (or have them shortened to fit your window) and use spray adhesive to adhere your favourite fabric to the already existing vinyl blind. Just use a ruler or similar object to make sure there aren't bubbles in the fabric. You can either hem the fabric before you put it on the roller blind or just attach it without a hem and use a product like Fray Check to keep it from fraying.
  • If you want both sides of the shade to show the decorative fabric rather than using a plain and stiff backing for the outside, use a fabric stiffener to make your decorative fabric work as backing.
  • The bottom of the shade can be made more decorative using fringe, rope, tassels or ribbon. The embellishments can be attached using a glue gun.
  • An alternative and modern look can be made if you use a complementary fabric for the bottom several inches of the shade, and possibly a ribbon or frill at the seam. This decision would need to be made prior to sewing the fronts and back of the shade together.

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