Sunday, June 3, 2012

baby-safe "roman shades"

We had a homemade Roman shade in the kitchen (I made it when we first moved in six years ago), but considering the number of recalls of Roman-style shades in the past couple of years, I was never comfortable with it after my kiddo was born. Have I mentioned what a crazy climber he's become lately? I think he has mountain goat aspirations.

Anyway, it was time to nix the kitchen's strangulation hazard in favor of this simple faux Roman shade.

A lot of the tutorials you'll find for "faux roman shades" are actually valances that don't ever drop to cover the entire window. This one does.

It's in no way perfect, but it is inexpensive, easy, and functional. And by functional, I don't mean "easy to open due to an elaborate system of cords and pulleys", but "covers the window at several different heights, providing privacy without blocking too much light".

Again, no strangle-y bits here.

First, clear out your old window treatments.

Acquire three simple tension rods long enough to fit the width of your window, and a painter's canvas drop cloth. Your canvas drop cloth should be wide enough to accommodate a (pre-washed) single piece as wide as your window and twice as long (plus seam allowances and about three inches of length to make a pocket for the rod).

Loosen the screws, fit the tension rods to your windows, and tighten the screws.

Install two of the rods as shown, effectively splitting the window into equal thirds.

Hem your canvas panel along all sides and bottom, and create a pocket at the top that can accommodate the curtain rod. Hang it at the very top of your window.

Loop your shade behind the second (middle) rod, creating a deep fold.

Pull out the tail from the bottom, and repeat the loop-and-fold for the third (bottom) rod.

That's it! For us, because the window looks out into the less-than-scenic car port, it's not important that the shade open and close quickly and easily. When I want a breeze, I just pull and tuck and have this again:

Total time: about an hour (not counting the wash cycle). Total cost: $40 including three tension rods and one canvas drop cloth. You could cut the cost by using any fabric you have on hand, sheets, etc.

What's on your windows? I'd love to visit your (non-spam) links in the comments below!

(p.s. pictures can be enlarged by clicking on them, but you probably already knew that.)

Linking up to:
mop it up mondays

The Stuff of Success

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