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It is very easy to transform simple roller shades into fancier roman shades without sewing a thing! Just choose your favorite fabric, pick up some adhesive spray, and a glue gun, and you're all set. This tutorial will show you how to create shades like these!

Rather than go out and buy a pair of new blinds or shades, approximately 6' x 3', that could cost upwards of $100 each, I decided to repurpose the shades that we already had hanging in the nursery. I didn't want to spend much money, meaning no more than $10, haha, so while I was running other errands, I dropped by Hobby Lobby with my 40% off coupon and picked up a bottle of adhesive spray for $3.50 (there's going to be a lot left over that I can use for other projects, so I guess it cost me more like $.50). I also went to Joann Fabrics on a different day when I had one of their rarer 50% off coupons to use on the fabric.

DIY TIP: Use Hobby Lobby or Joann 40% off coupons for as much yardage of one fabric that you want! Just be sure to snag it when it is at regular price, otherwise your coupon won't work. Timing is everything.

Before I go to far, here is a before and after...

Supplies:

  • Fabric (a foot longer and a few inches wider than needed to cover the shade)
  • Adhesive Spray
  • Roller Shades with Hardware
  • Glue Gun
  • Scissors
  • Ruler

For this project, I chose a cheap white muslin that was exactly 1 yard wide...perfect fit and no fraying edge! Side note: I would definitely do this project again, and depending on the room, I would choose a fun print! I would also opt for a heavier fabric or a blackout shade if I went with a colored fabric so the light doesn't distort the look of the shade. But for this, a white worked with our gray and white nursery.

Step 1:

Before you start, make sure you clean the shade. A wet paper towel will work just fine. If you need to, tape up any rips with clear tape (so you won't see it through any light colored fabrics).

Lay out your curtain in a flat, clean, ventilated area. Make sure the shade rolls OVER the curtain. Spray all but a small portion of the bottom with the adhesive. The bottom portion is where you will create pleats, so leave the glue off. Then, with your pre-ironed fabric rolled neatly slowly unroll and press onto the shade. Take your time and press out any bubbles as you go (just like laying shelf paper).

Step 2:

Let your curtain sit for a few minutes to let the glue dry. Turn it over to the back, and hot glue the edges to the back (don't hot glue directly on the shade, put the glue on the fabric and fold over, the tip could melt the shade). Glue the excess fabric to the back of the shade, but stop when you reach the unglued section of the shade. Cut the fabric perpendicularly to the shade at that point so that instead of gluing the extra fabric to the back, you can glue the fabric to itself. That way, you will create a seam on the unglued section of fabric. You should also turn under the bottom edge and glue to itself to create a finished seam there.

Step 3:

Glue the bottom corners of the fabric to the bottom corners of the shade. Since your fabric is longer than the shade, you should have a balloon of extra fabric. With both hands, grab the edges and fold the excess into as many pleats as you want. I made about 8 pleats for 12 inches of uncovered shade.

Put a dot of glue on both sides of the curtain to secure the pleats. Your pleats will look sort of like this picture.

Step 4:

Starting with the bottom pleat, fold it down towards the bottom of the shade. Place a dot of glue to secure the pleat down. Do this for all the pleats on both sides. You'll notice you didn't glue down the center part of the pleats so it will hang loosely when installed.

That's it! You can always peel off the glue off the pleats and try again if you mess up! It's not an exact science, and the pleats will lay a tiny bit differently from shade to shade, but hopefully it turns out ok! Definitely worth it for less than $10!