Create Beautiful Roman Shades Using Old Slatted Blinds

The best part about these stunning window shades? You can make them at home without any stitching or sewing.


  • Tape measure
  • Vinyl mini blinds (to fit your window)
  • Fabric of your choice
  • Fabric glue
  • Chalk pencil
  • Yardstick
  • Scissors
  • Pre-made decorative trim (optional)
  • Drill
  • Philips head screw bit


    Preparing Fabric
    Using a tape measure, measure the inside of the window frame. Purchase mini blinds to fit your window. The color doesn't matter, but white works best for most spaces.

    Begin by laying out the fabric with the pattern-side facedown. Take your window measurements and add 2 inches to all four sides for a seam allowance. Transfer these measurements to the fabric and cut off the excess.

    To create the seam line, first measure 2 inches inward and draw a straight line with a yardstick and chalk pencil. Apply a bead of fabric glue directly on the seam line. Fold the fabric over to create the no-sew seam all the way down this side. Move to the opposite side of the fabric, and repeat this step.

    Apply fabric glue to the seam lines on the remaining two sides. Fold the fabric over. Make sure to apply plenty of glue to the corners, and make sure they are perfectly square.

    When all 4 of the seams are done, flip the fabric over so the pattern-side is face-up. If you are adding a decorative trim, then attach the trim to the left edge by applying a bead of fabric glue down the entire left side of the shade. Unroll your pre-made decorative trim, leaving several inches at the top and bottom to fold over, and press the trim into the glue. Repeat this for the opposite side.

    Finish off the ends by folding the excess trim over and gluing to the backside of the fabric

    Attaching the Blinds
    To make Roman shades, you first need to remove the excess blind slats. For ours we only needed 5 of the individual blinds to attach the fabric to. To remove the extra blinds first, cut the ladder-system at each individual slat, making sure not to cut the 3 pull cords that make the blinds go up and down. Remove the ladder-system completely.

    With the blinds now free falling, remove the bottom metal bar from the mini blinds. Do this by removing the 3 plastic plugs on the bottom metal bar that are holding the 3 pull cords in place. Slide the bottom metal bar off the pull cords and then discard the extra blind slats. Remember to leave just enough blinds on the pull cord to evenly spread out for your Roman shade.

    When you only have your remaining blinds left on the pull cords, thread the pull cords back through each of the 3 holes in the bottom metal bar. Adjust the bar so it meets up with the bottom of your fabric. Reinsert the plastic plugs to hold the pull cords in place.

    Tip: If the ends of the pull cords are frayed and difficult to thread through the holes, apply a small dollop of craft glue to the ends and roll the cord in your fingers, creating a fine tip.

    Line the blinds back up so the top metal bar of the blinds is at the top of the fabric, and the bottom metal bar of the blinds is at the bottom of the fabric. The rounded side of the blinds should be facing down.

    Pull the top metal bar back to reveal the front side. Glue the top metal bar to the fabric by applying a thick line of craft glue and pressing the front of the top metal bar into the fabric. Repeat this by pulling the bottom metal bar back to reveal the front side. Apply craft glue to the bottom metal bar and press it into the fabric.

    Once the top and bottom metal bars are secured to the fabric, spread the remaining blinds out. The blinds will create the folds of your Roman shade so they need to be evenly spaced out Slide one of the blinds back a half an inch, and run a line of fabric glue parallel to the blind, across the entire piece of fabric.

    Lift the blind up and press the rounded side into the fabric glue. Check to make sure the blind is straight.

    Repeat steps 7 and 8 to secure the remaining 4 blinds to the fabric. Let the glue fully dry.

    To hang the Roman shade, follow the instructions provided with the mini blinds. Secure the mounting brackets to the window frame with a drill and Philips head screw bit. Slide the new shades into place by pressing the top bar of the blinds into each mounting bracket. Lower or raise the shades just as you would any standard mini blinds.
  • Published 12/16/2016
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