DIY Project: Faux Roman Shade

I really love the look of roman shades but I hate paying the price for them. A couple of years ago, I made a faux roman shade that was so easy and turned out so well, I decided I had to do it again for some of the windows in our current house. I thought I'd share the process with you, too, since it's so easy and the result is fantastic!




3 yards of fabric

3 yards of blackout liner in white

Sewing machine

White thread and sewing needle

A long piece of wood, about 2" wide and 1/4" thick, cut about an inch wider than the width of your window

5 wooden dowels, 1/2" diameter thick, cut a few inches shorter than the width of your window

Hot glue gun

Drill and wood screws




First, I laid out my fabric and trimmed off the selvage on each side. Then, using the width of my window as measurement and adding two inches for hemming, I cut my fabric accordingly.



Next I laid my blackout liner on top of my fabric (wrong sides facing) and trimmed the liner to be the same width as the fabric. Then I pinned the liner to the fabric and then sewed the fabric and liner together on all sides.




Next I created a 1" hem on three sides (leaving the top of the fabric unhemmed).



When the fabric and liner was all hemmed, I laid it back out, right side down, and placed the long piece of wood at the top of the panel, leaving about an inch of extra fabric at the top. Then I wrapped that extra fabric around the top of the wood and hot glued it.



Now the tough part: creating the pleats. I don't know if I'm just a big dummy (likely), or if creating even pleats is hard for everyone, but it took me a good hour to make five even, straight pleats of generally the same length. I wanted my finished shade to be 36" long so I just kept adjusting the pleats until both sides and the center measured 36 inches (and maybe some centimeters because, at that point, I didn't care if it was perfect).




Once I got my pleats done, I hand stitched the top of each pleat to the layer of fabric just underneath it. I hand stitched each pleat in five places: one on each side and three evenly spaced stitches along the top of each pleat. That was a bit time consuming.



Then I inserted a wooden dowel into each pleat so that it rested at the bottom of the pleat, helping to give the bottoms of the pleats a straighter line when hung.



Once that was done, I was ready to hang my shade! Here's where I failed to take pictures of the process, but I'll try to explain the best I can.

I only glued the fabric to the top back of the wooden piece so that I could get underneath the fabric in the front of the finished curtain and screw the entire wood piece directly into the wall. I had my hubby drill three holes in the wooden piece: one about two inches from each end and one in the center. Then I climbed up on the counter with my shade and a level and I held the shade in place (with a level sitting on top of it) while my hubby reached under the shade and drilled it into the wall through the pre-drilled holes and using wood screws. This was a pretty simple process, but it took four hands, for sure.



Anyway, here's how the finished product turned out! I really love the way it looks and no one thinks it's a faux shade until they ask me about it (at which time I feel free to brag about it!). It's so easy, so affordable, and the best part is that it's completely customizable. Use whatever fabric you want to match your decor (I love to order my fabric off of Give it a shot and prepare yourself to be showered with a bunch of compliments from your friends!



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Picture of Cheyenne Bell

Author: Cheyenne Bell

Cheyenne, a photographer and SAHM, resides with her amazing hubby, two crazy kiddos, a Border Collie and two evil cats in the suburbs of Houston, Texas. Besides photography, her greatest passions include lots of coffee, autumn, flea markets, vintage finds, old books, and red wine. When she’s not wrangling babies or shooting them (with her camera, of course) you can find her over at her blog, Girl v. The World, where she writes about everything from DIY, decor, motherhood, and healthy living, to the occasional product review or giveaway of things she loves.

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