The Shade Project

After the beginning failure of the window roller shade project and the subsequent acceptable prototype I spent a few days making shades for the downstairs windows. (I wish you were here to help me, Sis.)

These windows need shades and curtains.
These windows need shades and curtains.

Originally I was thinking of going the assembly line route: cutting everything, then stitching everything, then assembling. I realized this project would be better if I finished each shade from start to finish before moving onto the next one: each was a slightly different width, I needed the table as a worktop so I couldn’t also store the cut fabric there, a finished shade in the window was satisfying.

Linen canvas shades for the living room windows will layer under traditional curtains.
Linen canvas shades for the living room windows will layer under traditional curtains.

Accurate cutting of the fabric is key to an easy sewing regime and straight hanging once the shades are mounted. Each shade took approximately an hour to cut, press, stitch, press again, and hang. (It would have taken slightly longer if I would have also needed to hang the shade hardware. Thankfully it was already up.)

Once the curtains are made and hung I WILL hang the artwork that litters the floor.
Once the curtains are made and hung I WILL hang the artwork that litters the floor.

I did need to install shade hardware on one window and this is what I learned.  If I wanted the shade to show a full face of fabric and not the roller top, the hardware needed to be reversed in the window.  If the hardware were not reversed I could still hang the shade backwards but it would not go up and down in the normal fashion because the mechanism inside the roller only works one way.

Both first floor front windows will get shades but only the living room will also have curtains.
Both first floor front windows will get shades but only the living room will also have curtains.

I don’t plan to raise and lower these shades, they’re just for decoration. The living room and the front of the house are finished.

This window in the mudroom corresponds to the south-facing window in the living room.
This window in the mudroom corresponds to the south-facing window in the living room.

Due to the steps on the left and the powder room on the right the front window near the mudroom won’t be getting a curtain like the windows in the living room.

The front door would be to the left in this picture.
The front door would be to the left in this picture.

Next, the dining room double window.  This fabric, which by the way I inherited from my mother, blends with a variety of slightly different color schemes.

Two more for the dining room, please.
Two more for the dining room, please. And maybe finish painting the paneling!

The bottom line on the cost of the project is:

  • old shades — free
  • bolt of canvas fabric — free
  • thread — on hand
  • masking tape — on hand
  • labor — priceless.

That’s right: free, Free, FREE. My kind of project.

What’s your latest free adventure?

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Author: Jo

Welcome to The Glade, where the second generation of renovations has just begun and the mania about our home, music and other passions fill our days and nights. We’re Charlie and Jo in the music world; Mary Jo and Charles to family; and JoJo and Charlie to each other. We are renovating a midcentury house in a Victorian historic district where we want to live there the rest of our lives. It's a 1946 house located in Maryland. We were married in this house. Thus far (pre-blog) we refinished cabinets, added a window seat (still working on the cushion), rearranged a wall in the guest house due to sink/vanity replacement, planted a vegetable garden, and other quick and not-so-quick fixes. So this latest zeal for construction is the result of my having lived here since 1997 and feeling a need to ready the house for the next chapter and beyond.

8 thoughts on “The Shade Project”

    1. Thanks, Jessica. I never throw anything away. The fabric (not plastic) from the old shades is neat and stiff and I’m wondering if I should save it for a future project. Erggggh! Jo

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