Friday, November 9, 2012

The New No-Sew (Pinkie Swear!) Roman Shades

By the looks of my recent posts, you may be thinking that all I make around here is babies, but truth be told I made something else I want to share - instructions for no sew roman shades. And when I say "No Sew", I really mean it. Pinkie swear.  And I only say this because when I was doing my own research on making roman shades without using a dreaded sewing machine (no really, I don't sew), I got lured in to a few DIY instructions only to find "sew this" or "sew that" buried somewhere mid-post. 
I did see a few versions on Pinterest that used mini blinds (like this and this), which I found to be pretty ingenious, but I decided against them since the mini blind hardware was visible from the back.  Because the backs of the shades would be visible from the street, I wanted the shades to look (nearly) as lovely from the back as they did from the front since we are still trying to trick our new neighbors into thinking we're normal. 

Custom shades were out of the question (um, we just had our second baby and bought a house. If I'm spending $300+ on a few yards of fabric it better do something really magical, like make my muffin top disappear), so instead I set off to make them in a way that made sense for me.  And of course I'm pretending that it makes total sense to undertake the creation of roman shades while unpacking boxes, taking care of a newborn and keeping a two year old from running with scissors.  Realistic expectations? Not my strong suit. 

Back to the blinds.  After everything was said and done, each blind cost me $39 from top to bottom, but the cost could be lower or higher for you depending mostly on the fabric you select and less so on what supplies you already have vs. what you may have to purchase.  Truth be told, the main tool is an iron, so don't cue the sweaty palms just yet. 

The actual instructions are fairly long so i made a separate post for the actual step-by-step instructions.  You can find the instructions here or through the link below.  It's not that the process is so complicated (since it's basically just measuring and ironing), but I probably overshared for fear of leaving someone in the lurch mid-iron. 

The New No-Sew (Pinkie Swear!) Roman Shades Step-by-Step Instructions (click here)

Here are some more photos of my finished (and frugal) shades...


  1. With the sun coming in, it looks very tribe-a-licious! Sweet tutorial, great design.

  2. Hi! This is a great post. I'm wondering how high the "stack" is when fully open. Thanks!

    1. Thanks! I open mine keeping the top panel flat, so about 15". You could open them further but I don't like how it looks as much. :)

  3. Hi!
    One more question...I've searched for the by the yard rod sleeve but haven't found it anywhere online...does it really exist?
    thank you!!!

    1. hi and yes! although I can't vouch for it being available by the yard online. i simply called my local Jo-Ann Fabric, and they had it by the yard. I also bought the ring tape there. It's possible someone at Jo-Ann can direct you to where it's sold online. I did a quick search and didn't see rod sleeve. they do sell ring tape online but not by the yard. I'm sure other sewing / notions stores sell it. its not uncommon stuff, especially if the store also custom makes curtains from my (very simple) understanding of how all this stuff works.

      hope that helps!

  4. I came across your post/website as I had seen "Roman Shades" mentioned in text so many times that I thought that maybe, just maybe, I ought to actually look them up to see if I actually know what they are. (I do.) I read the above explanation, and was not only completely charmed and won over, but also VERY relieved, as I also don't sew. Also, we are hoping to move, and I would like to have something covering the windows beyond dusty blinds. (Venetian! See? I DO know what I'm talking about!) Anyway, as I also happen to adore glitter and hairspray, I shall next be subscribing to your site, and look forward to everything I will discover. Have a GREAT day, and thank you!!


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