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40+

Buildmumahouse Guide: How to make Roman blinds?

April 19, 2017

I’m taking you through a step-by-step guide to making Roman blinds with or without a kit. Roman blinds transform your windows, are surprisingly quick to make and use very little fabric compared to curtains so you can really splurge on the quality or the fabric design or work to a tight budget. They can be used on the own or with curtains for a decadent layered effect. Roman blinds can be lined or sheer, thermal or blackout. Either way they are energy efficient even with double glazing and give you instant privacy.

A pleated or Roman blind folds into soft accordion pleats when it is drawn up and hangs straight when down. Roman blinds give your window a simple classic elegance and also make the most of subtle fabric designs.

There are two ways of making a Roman blind: with or without a kit.

Without a kit the blind is held in an up position by securing the cord to a cleat. Using a kit the blind pulls up using a chain loop, which is good for heavy and wide blinds. A kit can also be safer with children as there is not a long cord hanging down when the blind is pulled up. With a kit the blind will sit in any position you pull it to and the metal headrail will only need cutting to size and adjusting.

Making a Roman Blind without a Kit.

This is the most diy and the cheapest option. Making your Roman blind the old fashioned way.

Materials for a Roman Blind without a kit:

  1. Wooden batten depth 25mm and width 50mm measured to the width of your window recess (A)
  2. Velcro tape 25mm wide the same length as the batten
  3. A staple gun
  4. 4 screw-in eyelet hooks or pulleys
  5. Cord. Calculate 3 x 4 times the drop of the blind, at least
  6. A cleat
  7. A breakaway cord connector
  8. One length of narrow a flat bottom bar: a batten about 0.5 x 1.27cm for the bottom of the blind or a flat aluminium or plastic bar 2.5cm wide from Merrick Day
  9. Narrow tape with pockets for rods – Roman blind tape
  10. Roman blind rods or dowelling to fit into Roman blind tape
  11. 12mm split brass or plastic rings for cording available from www.merrick-day.com
  12. Matching sewing thread
  13. Tailor’s chalk
  14. Sewing kit including big sharp scissors and long pins
  15. Steam iron and ironing board
  16. Sewing machine

Measuring up Roman Blinds

  1. Attach the wooden baton to the top of the window recess and measure up the inside of the window. Staple the furry half of the 25mm Velcro tape to the front face of the batten.
roman blind, how to make a roman blind, measure a roamn blind, buildmumahouse

Measure the inside of the window

2. Measure the inside of the window for the width and the drop.

Use this measurement for the lining, if you plan on using one.

 

 

 

 

 

Seam allowances

Add 2.5cm on each side of width for side hems. Add 1cm for top hem and 5cm at the bottom hem. Cut your fabric to size on the straight grain. Lay the lining on to the back of the curtain fabric covering the window area using this photo as a placement guide. Pin in place.

 

 

 

3. Cut your fabric looking out for pattern repeats, its nice to get a shape to be centred. Press the side seams in to place. The side seams are double so turn in on each side 0.5cm, press in place, then turn in 2.5cm. Press, pin in place then stitch. Now turn down the top edge and press.

Turn in side seams and top seams.

4. Press the side seams in to place. The side seams are double so turn in on each side 0.5cm, press in place then turn in 2cm. Press then stitch. Now turn down the top edge 1cm and press.

5. Sew the Velcro tape to the back of the blind, 0.5cm from the top edge covering the raw edge. Sew both edges of the Velcro tape. This is going to attach to the Velcro stapled onto the batten.

For lined blinds make sure the lining is flat and all edges are all covered into these seams and attached behind the Velcro.

Turn in side seams and top seams.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. Make the bottom hem, turn over 1cm and press, turn it up again to make a 4cm pocket to fit your dowelling or batten.

For lined blinds make sure that your lining is lying flat, tucked in neatly and covered by this seam.

roman blinds marking out folds

 

 

 

7. Work out the width of your pleats so that they are even across the blind, 10cm is an average width or divide by 6. Mark each pleat with tailors chalk. Sew Roman Blind tape across the back of each pleat, one by one. Insert the rod or dowelling in each tape pocket.

This tape has a guide for the split rings, push a split brass curtain between the tape and the guide. Line up the rings  to the top of the blind.

 

8. Trim the rods 2cm shorter than the width of the blind. Insert the rods and the bottom batten, slip stitch by hand the ends of these “pockets”.

9. On each rod pocket mark the centre point of the blind and slip a brass ring in place through the guide in the tape. Repeat 5cm in from each side edge of the blind on each pocket.

10. Line up three of the the screw-in eyelets or pulleys on the top batten with the rings attached to the blind.
Fix the fourth eyelet or pulley to the right of the blind on the window recess. Lower down attach a cleat and an acorn near the bottom of the cord.
11. Hang the blind: Attach firmly the Velcro strip on the top of the blind to the matching Velcro strip on the batten.

12. For the cording stage I found this drawing – it explains it all really well.

c) Michael A Hill www.idealhome.com

Starting at the bottom ring with a knot, thread the cord up vertically to match the corresponding eyelet on the batten and over to the eyelet on the side of the frame, down to the cleat. Repeat this with each row.

 

 

The cleat should be positioned as high as possible so its well out of the way of children. Consider attaching a breakaway cord connector at the end of the cords and for safety don’t knot all three cords together to form a loop.

If you buy a Roman Blind Kit choose one that is fully child safe and that the control chains are adjustable length, not a continuous loop. Breakaway string controls and Parts can be purchased from www.merrick-day.com

buildmumahouse, interiors, lifestyle, windows

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Now?

It’s important that you do visit my Youtube channel to watch the safety film about Roman Blinds, especially if you have children or if kids visit your home.

Roman Blind supplies can be found at www.merrick-day.com

Roman Blind Kits can be bought at Merrick Day

murtra_deluxe_roman_kit_instructions

Or from Terry’s Fabric’s https://www.terrysfabrics.co.uk/

Terrys_Cassette-Roman-Blind-Kit_Fitting

So now you have been introduced to Roman blinds and how to make them, go over to Buildmumahouse Pinterest for lots of inspirational fabrics and looks. If you would like to consider other window decor ideas visit Buildmumahouse guides to making curtains or my blog post about automated roller blinds.

If you have any tips, questions and would like to share your Roman blind projects leave me a message on my comments board. Love to hear from you.

 

 

Youth Boost – can it banish Hot Flush Frizz? Tresemme Hair Products Test

August 25, 2016

Shopping with my mum in Boots last week I was hunting down a shampoo/conditioner/setting lotion that would tame her flyaway hair.  On my hands and knees, bent double, on tip toes, I scanned every shelf while my mum stood leaning on her walking stick and trying not to laugh. Then Bingo! I came across a hair range that declared itself tailor made for the “first signs of aging hair” : Youth Boost by Tresemme. I love their normal conditioner so I bought some Youth Boost for myself, my mum bought some and I gave it a go… Here are the results according to me!

“Why use Youth Boost?”

“Now treat the first signs of aging hair, lack of body, dryness and dullness…This specialist solution system weightlessly …recharges your hair with youthful fullness (hair has more body – System use) softness and shine.”

Youth Boost Tresemme review Jola Piesakowska Buildmumahouse caring for carers beauty shampoo recommendations

In case you’re wondering why the tube is wonky – after one use I couldn’t get the shampoo tube to straighten up!

The Packaging

This is a product that I presume is targeting …40 plus? Looks like no-one has done their homework. Most of  my friends over 40 are getting arm extensions to read text and all of my friends over 50 wear glasses to read ANYTHING.

But we don’t wear them when we’re washing our hair.

That’s the first problem. The text on the bottles is too small. Sorry Youth Boost, this is pretty sloppy design: we would like the text larger so that when our hair and faces are wet, we can squint and make out SHAMPOO or CONDITIONER. Larger text and nicely designed, thank you.

Shampoo and Conditioner

Colour coding, nice idea: shampoo white, conditioner black  – or is it the other way round?

The plastic tube is nice and soft so easy to grip and the flip top lid had a precise open and close – and not too hard to open.

Fullness Emulsion Spray

The Fullness Emulsion Spray comes in a dinky bottle with a fancy nozzle. A nozzle that fell off in my shopping basket as I walked to the till and with which I battled when I  got home. I felt that the pump action button is too small – it’s ok for an index finger, but as you ‘age’ you would probably use your thumb to pump this up.  A bigger, shallower button would have been great.

The Youth Boost Products at Home

Shampoo Road Test

I have medium length hair and I had to use a lot of this shampoo to get everything covered, at least a third of a tube. It needs a lot of shampoo for a good wash, it rinses off nicely, but hair left tangled and straw like – with the texture that any girl who owned a Sindy would recognise.

Conditioner

Lovely, creamy, didn’t need to use much product and once on, helped me detangle my hair as I worked it through. I’ve already forgotten the smell but I just checked it again and its very ‘grown up’ like a salon smell.

Fullness Emulsion Spray

I know I have a lot of hair on my head but I bought this as its part of the ‘system’ that it claims to fullness, softness and shine. I colour my hair and it’s always been fine, it’s prone to dryness, fluffiness, it’s always been prone the morning bird’s nest at the back of my head and now that I am having hot flushes – FRIZZ. But it looks great, shiny and is soft with the right products and especially after a trip to my hairdressers, Andrew Jose.

At home, day to day, I always use an emulsion product before blowdrying so I tried the Youth Boost Fullness Emulsion Spray. I’ve already had my moan about the nozzle so here’s the verdict. Once dry and styled, yes my hair was fuller and bouncy that bit definitely works, but it feels so wrong. There is no softness, each hair feels like it has a lacquer, a product, on top of it, so it’s very dry in texture. After a day, that stuff seems to brush out and leaving my hair much softer. However, I had woken up with a dry bird’s nest at the back of my head and my hair was very tangly. This next comment and this is a biggie, it stopped my hair doing the Hot Flush Frizz. I don’t like the feel of the product residue on my hair but I can see myself using this on some work days for hair volume and protection from Hot Flush Frizz. Long term, I would be concerned about it drying out my hair and breakages.

The Buildmumahouse Carer Verdict

I chose this product for myself and paid for it, so I can be totally honest:

Packaging 2 / 10

Shampoo 0/10

Conditioner 9/10

Fullness Emulsion Spray 5/10

Banish Hot Flush Frizz 9/10

Tresemme Youth Boost review Buildmumahouse Jola Piesakowska beauty blogger caring for carers

The Buildmumahouse Mum 80+ Verdict

Packaging 6 / 10 my mum loves the flip top it was much better than screw tops for her athritic hands. Would prefer the labeling to be clearer.

Shampoo 9/10 Loved it

Conditioner 10/10 My mum is absolutely delighted her flyaway hair is smooth and soft and has become very manageable – it’s a hit!

 

 

I bought the Tresseme Youth Boost in Boots, there was a deal on which made it cheaper so worth trying out.

If any of you have tried Tresemme Youth Boost, let me know if it was good for you? Am I being too harsh?

Can you recommend anything that’s better at controlling Hot Flush Frizz?

Does this list of ingredients make sense to anyone? Maybe you understand what’s going on?

 

List of Ingredients for the Youth Boost Fullness Emulsion Spray
Aqua
Glycerin
Dimethiconol
VP/VA Copolymer
Tocopheryl Acetate
Linum Usitatissimum Seed Oil
Menthol
Benzophenone-4
Butylene Glycol
Cetrimonium Chloride
Citric Acid
Coceth-7
Cyclopentasiloxane
Disodium EDTA
Hydroxyethylcellulose
Isopropyl Alcohol
Laureth-23
Parfum
PEG/PPG-25/25 Dimethicone
PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil
PPG-1 -PEG-9 Lauryl Glycol Ether
Sodium Hydroxide
TEA-Dodecylbenzenesulfonate
TEA-Sulfate
DMDM Hydantoin
Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate
Laurtrimonium Chloride
Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone
Benzyl Alcohol
Benzyl Salicylate
Salicylate
Butylphenyl Methylpropional
Citronellol
Geraniol
Hexyl Cinnamal
Limonene
Linalool