A few weeks ago I completed a fun project for my kitchen. I shared it with Traci at Beneath My Heart, but in case you missed it, I want to show it off here. It's a completely no-sew faux Roman shade.
Here's exactly how I made it.
First I chose a fabric. I considered something light-colored, but this is a west-facing window, so I wanted a dark background color to provide good heat-blocking on summer afternoons. I was tickled when I found this fabric:
This fabric looks cheerful and summery to me. As an added bonus, it's an outdoor fabric, so it won't fade. (Note: the fabric is from Not Just Linens in Durham, North Carolina, and it's called "Dorothy Ebony." I don't know if it's available anywhere else, but you can call Not Just Linens at 919-402-8555 and order the fabric over the phone.)
After selecting fabric, I followed these steps to make the shade. You can do it too!
Decide on the measurements you need. For this method, you'll need to end up with a shade that's the width of the inside of your window. The length of the shade would ideally be the length of your window, but it doesn't necessarily have to be that long. Simply cut your fabric to the correct width plus an inch on either side and the twice the length you want to end up with. (This is a no-sew method, so you'll need double the fabric length. If you want to sew a lining fabric to your shade fabric, you'll just need a single length of fabric and a length of lining.)
Lay your fabric out on a large work surface. You've cut your fabric an extra inch wide on each side; now turn the fabric under 1 inch on each side and secure the flaps with fabric glue or with Stitch Witchery. (For my shade, I needed the full width of the fabric plus a little extra, so I simply used glue to secure ribbon to the selvages of my fabric.
Once you have your fabric to the desired width with the sides finished however you like, double the fabric over, right sides together. Glue (or Stitch Witch, or sew if you like) the two cut ends together to create a seam.
Turn the fabric right side out. Now you have a large rectangle of doubled fabric.
And now for the secret tool that makes this shade possible: the tension rod. These rods are adjustable to any length. Measure the inside of your window frame to find the length you need, and adjust the rod using the manufacturer's directions. (**Notes: The insides of my window frames are not very deep, so I used an oval rod. Be sure to get tension rods that are plenty wide enough for your window. Tension rods are extremely adjustable, but as you stretch tension rods out to their fullest lengths, they get weak in the middle. Also, before you try to make this shade, be sure that your window casing is smooth enough to hold a tension rod. Mine are smooth wood, so the tension rods stay in place with no problem.)
Insert the rod into one end of your fabric rectangle, like so:
Hang your fabric rectangle in the top of your window frame. (Remember that your rod needs to be just a little longer than the window, so that you have to apply some pressure to squeeze them into the window casing. It's that tension that will keep them hanging in place.)
See? My shade isn't exactly the right length, but I'm only going to use it as a stationary treatment at the top of my window, so it doesn't matter that it's not quite long enough.
Take a second tension rod and hang it a few inches lower than your top rod (mine is about 7 inches lower than the top rod), like so:
Now bring your fabric up to double over the second rod.
Now repeat that process with a third tension rod. Here's how the shade will look under the folds. (Just ignore those cup hooks; they're still in place there from making a shade using Thrifty Decor Chick's method.)
You'll have to fiddle with it to get the folds just the length you like, but it doesn't take long. And here's what you'll have:
A fun, faux Roman shade that's so quick and easy to create that you may want to make one for each different season!
What do you think? I'm loving it! I made a some fun no-sew accessories to go with the shade: click here to read about those. Or click here to see more photos of my kitchen.
Updated to add: I finally found some trim to add to the sides of the shade so that it would be wide enough to cover the tension rods. Here's a peek:
It's a small difference, but I'm glad for the rods not to be showing anymore. Unless you have a very wide window like mine, this won't be a problem for you.
And check this out: Deidre from For Such a Time as This created a shade using my tension-rod method for her master bathroom. Deidre shows how you can space the rods further apart for the look of a Roman shade that's mostly lowered, thus covering most of the window. Isn't it lovely? Thank you, Deidre, for sharing your no-sew creation!
And look at these multiple windows treated by Jenny from Evolution of Style. Beautiful!
Isn't the blogging community the greatest place for sharing ideas?