When Mum and Dad visited us for my daughter’s birthday, I jumped at the chance to team up with Mum and work on a project together. I thought making a simple Roman blind for my kitchen would be a great way to glean from Mum many years of sewing knowledge … while at the same time getting a great blind for my kitchen! However, as always we tried to pack too much into one visit, and Mum had to leave for home before we finished. Before she left, we gathered all the supplies I would need and made a plan. I’m on my own now!
I made my blind to hang on the inside of the kitchen window frame. The window is large, measuring 1800mm by 1000mm. Make sure your measurements are precise … measure twice, cut once. You’ll also need to make sure everything is cut even and square. Apart from that, if you have basic sewing skills this was a moderately simple project – it just took time and patience.
What you will need:
- Fabric (width of window plus hem)
- Lining (width of window)
- Thread to match the fabric
- 2 x L-Shaped brackets
- Wooden batten 42x19mm (width of the window)
- Thin wooden dowelling 8mm (width 30mm less than blind width)
- Velcro (width of wooden baton)
- Doubled-sided tape
- Ribbon / fabric strips (or Roman blind tape)
- 12mm plastic rings
- Nylon cord
- Screw eyelets
- Wall cleat for cord
- Cord tassel/weight
- Measure the window.
- Cut the wooden baton just shy the width of the window. Allow a few extra millimetres on either end for the L-Shaped bracket.
- Use double sided sticky tape to attach the loop side of the velcro to the baton.
- Staple the velcro to make secure.
- Cut the lining exactly the same size as the window frame. Ensure it is square.
- Cut the fabric the size of the window frame, plus an extra 120mm (5″) to the length and width for the hem.
- Create the hem by folding over the fabric twice until it measures the same as the window (or lining). Ensure it is square. Press.
My fabric wasn’t wide enough for the width of the window, so I sewed 3 pieces of fabric together. I made the middle piece the widest and the 2 side panels smaller. I started with a “rough” cut, allowing for more than I need in case the fabric “moved” when I sewed all 3 pieces together. After sewing and pressing, I then cut the fabric to the required size.
- Turn the fabric right side up and unfold the hem.
- At the top, place the fluffy end of the velcro across the middle crease towards the top of the fold.
- Sew around all 4 sides of the velcro.
- Lay the lining on the wrong side of the fabric. Ensure it is smooth and square.
- Fold back the hem and pin.
- Fold the corner in to create a mitred corner.
- Sew all the way around the hem.
- Position the thin wooden dowels across the width of the blind. The width of your dowels should measure about 30mm (1.2″) less than blind.
- I made the bottom end of the blind not as big as the folds, measuring 150mm (6″). Each fold was 200mm (8″).
- Draw a line cross the lining with a pencil where the rod will go. Make sure it is square.
- Place the ribbon or fabric strips (roman blind tape if you have some) across the blind where your rod will go. Ensure the ribbon or fabric strips are wide enough to insert the rods. I used left over lining.
- Sew across both lengths of the fabric strips, leaving both ends open.
- Insert the rod and hand sew the ends closed.
- Hand sew on plastic rings.
- Attach the L-Shaped brackets to the inside of the window frame.
- Screw the eyelets along the length of the baton (I attached 4 eye hooks).
- Work out which side of the window you want your cleat.
- Measure out your nylon cord. For each drop you’ll need the 2 x length by 1 x width of the blind.
- Take the cord and tie it to the bottom ring. Thread the cord up through each ring until you reach the top.
- Lay the baton near the top, velcro side down. Thread the cord through the eyelets all the way the the end.
- Repeat for each cord. Tie a loose knot to secure the loose cords.
- Attached wooden batten to the L-shaped brackets.
- Stretch the blind across the baton. Smoothing out and ensure velcro is secure.
- Making sure the end cords are even. Place the cord tassel/weight onto the end of the cords.
- Secure the cleat to the window frame well above child-height for safety.
- Pull the blind up and tie cords in a figure of eight around the cleat.
After a bit of tweaking (I added an extra screw eyelet at the end), I’m pretty happy with my first attempt at making a blind. There were no great disasters (if you don’t count Paul breaking a drill-bit off in the wall!).
This is a very wide window and while I took my time, I can see that my rods are not 100% square. I don’t think this detracts too much from the overall look. But it does drive home the importance of ensuring your measurements are square.
I also seem to have a slight ripple affect happening … I’m not sure if this is because I didn’t keep enough tension on the fabric when I was sewing it (or perhaps I had too much!). Either way, this project has really inspired me to do some more sewing around the home … perhaps some new cushion covers for my kitchen chairs.
For some great inspiration and guidance, please check out this step-by-step youtube tutorial from Debbie Shore.
It’s imperative that blind cords are secured in a safe manner, the ACCC fact sheet provides more information.
For more sewing inspiration, please visit my Pinterest board “Sewing Ideas & Inspiration”
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