Friday, July 2, 2010

Roman Shade DIY Shortening i.e. customizing

Previously a DIY tutorial was promised to give you a step-by-step on shortening off the shelf woven roman shades.  Sorry about the poor photography.... In my spare time I plan to hone my photography skills as well ;)

Have a window, add a window A/C because you moved from the West Coast to East and whole house integrated A/C is something that is apparently not "necessary". (Don't tell that to the 90 degree, 90% humidity weather). Tie curtain up with scraps of yarn (because the knitting bag was the closest thing to the window) so said curtain is not obstructing the glorious cold air raining toward you.  Decide that it is time to dump the curtains and install roman shades, but choose not to spend 3x as much and wait 6-8 weeks for custom shades.


Spend $35 at local Big Box on a woven roman shade, which is about 1/2-1" too narrow and about 14" too long for the window.  Take note that the width is not something I tackled.  This tutorial is only for shortening the length.


Open package. Lay out blind (wrong side up).
Have handy:
Hot Glue Gun
Tape Measure

Measure window length.  Measure blind to match.  Add at least 3" (depending on your weave) and mark. I used an extra 4" as it was just enough after folding it under and up that it ended in between two reeds.


Find the back strings.


Slide little metal brace out of roman shade stitching. You can cut it as well, because who cares... you don't need that part (if you did you wouldn't be reading this).


Reattach metal bar by sliding it into the stitching (higher up on the shade as to accommodate your new length.


Untie string and retie to tighten.


Trim excess string.


Repeat steps 5-8 on the second string.


Hot glue stitches right above the location you plan on cutting. (Picture right)

Trim bottom of shade by cutting stitches.  (picture left)


Fold up end to make a nice "seam" and hot glue in place.

Hang blind in window and enjoy!


Ability to enjoy the cold breeze in your face instead of up the curtain, well worth the hot glue finger burns!

A to-do list I don't mind to do.

A couple of months ago I posted my home project list.  At the time I was even thinking I was nuts with the quantity of projects I want to tackle.  It is a shame that living in a brand new house I have so many things to do, but when you like to live in unconventional style, alterations must be made.

 I revisited the list and realized that I actually HAVE completed some of the items...the SHOCK & HORROR!  After I picked myself up off the floor I decided to repost with my additional items.

Next with be my DIY for shortening store bought bamboo/woven roman shades.


* find or commission a 8' long farm table to be used as a desk in the girls suite. DID it MYSELF!!!!
* decide on window coverings for the new girls suite. Purchased @, put up MYSELF!!
* choose window covering for the rest of the house.   SEE ABOVE
* paint my craft room.
* paint the dining room. Not only did I paint it, I faux WAINSCOTTED IT!  See it  HERE.
* paint the sitting/piano room.
* paint the kitchen.
* paint the kitchen cabinets.
* paint the master bathroom cabinets.
* add picture molding to the dining room and sitting room.
* add wainscoting to the kitchen.
* crown molding in the kitchen, on the kitchen cabinets, in the dining room, in the sitting room.
* find a fabulous chandelier for my office, the sitting room and the entry.
* paint already owned bookcase (decide where it goes).
* create linen slipcovers for craigslist find wingback chair set.
* create two end of bed benches for the girls suite.
* paint the porch floor.
* speaking of floors - replace office carpet with wood floor & paint.
* all the while shop for new finds, make products for our etsy store, and find time to walk the dog. (we don't have a dog)

Adding additional items. It feels like the to do list is never ending!
*Finish painting the porch ceiling.
*build organizer for girls TV room.
*build patio tables for newly screened in porch/deck.
*build a dining room  table.
*paint, window clothe & create bed skirt for the guest room.

Thursday, July 1, 2010 Narrow Farmhouse Table COMPLETED!

I am a chica with tools and I am not afraid to use them!
I completed my table and it stands all on its own!  Albeit not totally level nor square, screw it! I made it and I am stoked! I forget, I am on the East Coast now, so I am WICKED HAPPY about it!

I have to give props again to Ana White at  I think I might have found my calling!
After $70+ and approximately 10 hours of work.  With a few adjustments (I didn't taper the legs and I narrowed the top) I have completed the Narrow Farmhouse Table  to be used as a duo desk for my twin girls.

A quick (and not so pretty) photo montage of my work.

Pile of wood

1st plan modification - I did not taper the legs (totally not square).  I have to admit I have no square skills.  I was triumphant with having 4 legs that turned out the same measurement, so square shmare.

My girls got in the mix.  They LOVED "distressing" the wood.... i.e. beating the crap out of the legs with a hammer and screw driver.  Gotta love a girl that is not afraid to use a hammer!

The legs working together to become a table.  EEEEEEk I am so excited!!!!

Wahhhhla, the table base is complete.  At this point and still, the table is really not square, but know what I say to that? I don't give a %&*$.  I do want to learn skills,  I am now inspired to learn how to be square!  Note to self, google how to be square.

The base actually STANDS, on its own 4 legs!

I didn't snap photos of the messy part.  Took four 1x6x8 pine boards & wood glued them together.  I clamped them in 3 locations and let dry overnight.  The next day, I sanded, and sanded and sanded to get rid of the grooves between the boards.  I would have left the grooves and not glued the boards together had it not been earmarked for use as a desk.

I also wanted to finish it a chippy white.  Hubby happens to favor the antique rustic pine look (like a few of our antiques).  In my attempt to experiment with the rustic finish under chippy, I decided to forgo the next step (painting) and leave it wood on top.  This way when I tire of the look, I can slap on some paint and have a new piece!

In the mean time, I plan on honing my faux finishing skills.  I was going to attempt a weathered wood look, but my steel wool in vinegar concoction never concocted.  I would love to come up with a way to mimic the patina old unfinished pine pieces have.  Not to mention the bubbling & chipping of old paint.  Another day, another project.  I digress.

Here is another view of the table top.

Another view.  Room is still in need of decorating, but you are supposed to be viewing the table! ;)

If I built this, so can you!  I cannot wait to build more!