DIY No-Sew Window Shades

Have you noticed the price of window treatments lately? I couldn’t believe how costly some fabric and a few metal parts could be as I was researching what kind of shade to buy for our living room windows. There was just no way I could spend that kind of money on curtains. I got frustrated and gave up looking; time to try something else!

What I landed on was a combo of purchasing some inexpensive curtains and morphing them into shades. They turned out great and are very practical, so I thought I would share what I did.

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You will only need three main things:

  • some kind of fabric
  • some kind of tension rod
  • something to seal hems

First, material. We needed something thick that would suppress the sun’s heat. So, instead of buying yards and yards of fabric (which would have cost me a good chunk of change), I purchased a thick sun-blocking curtain from walmart.com. At $7 per curtain, these cost a lot less than if I had purchased a ton of fabric.

Next, tension rod. My husband found some thick wooden dowels at a thrift store and we used those to hang the shades. There were no nails or screws necessary; we simply sawed the dowels to the exact width of the window, stuck a felt pad on each end, and shoved them into place. So the dowels’ own tension is what is keeping the shades in place.

Third, sealing hems. I cut each curtain to the size of my windows and sealed the hems with stitch witchery (no sewing at all!). Since the length of the curtains I purchased was already to size, I only had to cut along one side of the fabric in order to make it the size I needed. Then I simply sealed the cut line with stitch witchery.

Lastly, hang them up and enjoy!

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I’m still working on a method for rolling up the shades. Currently, I’m just literally rolling them up by hand and then jamming the fabric in between the window jams (ha). What I will do eventually is attach a thin dowel at the very bottom of each shade and stick a tiny felt pad on each end. That way, when I roll up the shades I have a better way of keeping the roll in place (again, the dowel’s tension will keep things in place).

That’s it! No cords, strings, nails, screws, grommets, or boning. Just fabric, stitch witchery, and dowels. I completed five window shades in about two hours, so it wasn’t terribly time consuming, either.

These shades look stylish, cost me little, and were super easy to make. You can make shades like these with any fabric of your choosing. If you need some shades on a tight budget, give these a try!

 

That Shifty Shrub

Over the weekend, my mom tackled some serious weeding.

At my house.

I am very grateful and she was very happy to do it. Together, we went to a nearby plant nursery and chose some sun-loving perennials to make a new home in my freshly weeded triangle shaped bed. Right now, there is still a lot of dirt showing but eventually the flowers will spread and the bed will look great.

 

The bed looked so much better than before my mom fixed it that I got inspired to try and do some more landscaping on my own after she left for home. One of the first things I wanted to do was remove a bush. There was nothing wrong with it, I just didn’t like it: not the prettiest thing, in my opinion. So, how hard can it be to dig up a shrub?

Well, I was in for a surprise. It was hard. Even with my two year old helping me out by pulling on the branches with the metal kitchen tong, we were having a tough time. I used a shovel to dig up under the bush and loosen most of the roots, but there were some central roots that just wouldn’t let go. I tried pulling the shrub out with no success.

Finally, I resorted to sitting on the ground in front of the stubborn bush. I peeled the bush back by pushing on it with my legs as if I was attempting to do a thigh press. While my legs were getting a work-out, I took a pruning clipper and cut away as much of the remaining roots as I could. After a few minutes enough had been cut away and I was able to lift the shrub out of the ground.

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Ugh. Look how nasty that thing is (it was green; I had cut away the branches to make it easier to dig around). Anyway, the shrub is history! I intend to plant some perennial flowers in its place.

I came away from the event looking like I had just spent the afternoon baling hay (scratches decorated my limbs). But, I kinda had fun. And I loved that my little guy was so willing to help me. The landscaping project will continue. As we just moved into a new home, most of the landscaping needs some serious attention. I know it will take me more than one summer to beautify everything. For now, I’ll enjoy the memory of straining over that silly bush and spending some quality time with my toddler.

 

Getting it Right

I tend to change things. No, I’m not a go-getter who makes the world a better place. What I mean is, it’s hard for me to let something stay as it is until, in my mind, it is exactly as it should be. (Perfectionist)?

Let me explain; here is an example. We recently moved into our first home (owned home, that is) and thanks to our wonderful 9 foot ceilings there is plenty of space above the kitchen cabinets for decorations. I like antiques. I like making the home. So I’ve spent the past two months lining up my little vintage possessions atop of the cabinets. I try one arrangement for a week or two, then switch it around. Then I look at it again and think, “Hmm, still not right.” So it gets moved around again. My husband jokes that he doesn’t know what item in our house will be moved around the next time he comes home from work. But finally, I have the items placed just right. I like them. I don’t intend to change the line-up anymore (intend… key word there).

I’ve also changed blogs a billion times. My very first blog documented my travels abroad in Spain. But once I was done traveling, I didn’t know what to blog about anymore so I deleted the blog. Then marriage and kids arrived, and I thought it would be fun to start blogging again. Over the past two or three years I made one for the sole purpose of spilling my thoughts and woes, one to document home remedies and natural living, and one for daily devotions. How many of those still exist? None of them. They weren’t quite “right” so out the window they went!

Well, we’ll see if Indigo Beans lasts longer than two months. Ha.

I don’t know if this mentality to constantly change things around is a case of OCD, or a touch of perfectionism, or the failure to be content. Maybe it’s a bit of all three. I don’t know. But I think that, as long as this tendency doesn’t bother anyone else, I won’t let it bother me. As long as the need to get everything perfect doesn’t cloud my life, then the kitchen décor will probably continue to get rearranged.