I’ve been in the house almost a year now. And I just hung window treatments the other day. Whoops. Chalk it up to shifting priorities. Yet when the realtor came through to give me some tips on what I could to do make the house look more “finished” window treatments (at least blinds at the bare minimum in all of the rooms) is apparently a standard.
I’d pinned this link/tutorial some time ago, which showed how to customize a cheap roller shade. Which is exactly what I did. Except instead of fabric, I just used an old shower curtain. Here is how I did it.
My Ikea Roller Shade Hack
After some research, I ended up ordering the Isdans roller shade from ikea.com. With the $15 shipping fee, it came out to $26 per shade. ($52 for both.) I ordered two 39 inch shades and cut them both to fit.
I then installed the hardware to the window.
Then measured again. NOTE: Be sure to include the length of the little knob thingy on the end. On the first window, I did it just from silver to silver of the pole and struggled for a good hour or two trying to put it up.
The second time I measured from the knob to the silver part where I wanted to make a cut and marked it. Measure twice, cut once.
Then I used a PVC pipe cutter to cut the non-knob end to length. Here is a great “How to use a kobalt pvc cutter” tutorial video since they don’t come with instructions…apparently. Since the ends get a little smushed during the pipe cutting, you may have to use needle nose pliers and/or a hammer to flatten it out again.
Ikea Roller Shade Hack – The Fun Part
Now comes the fun part with the fabric. I laid my shower curtain face down on the floor of my office.
Look familiar? You may have seen the shower curtain before in the guest bathroom.
I didn’t love it in the bathroom, but I thought the light blues, yellows, and soft gray matched up perfectly with the new ice blue kitchen color.
NOTE: Before you glue make sure your hardware is going to match up once you flip the shade to where the “front” of the fabric is. Mine was reversed, I didn’t double-check, and I had to start all over after I did my first shade and tried to hang it backward.
Tips and Tricks for Your Own Ikea Roller Shade Hack
I searched online for the best-rated fabric glue. Turns out it is this Unique Stitch Adhesive ($6.25 a tube on Amazon.) I was pretty impressed with the results.
Now, all you have to do is line up the bottom with the seam of your shower curtain (if there is one.) Then unroll the roller shade all the way out (cutting for length if you need to-I did!) Then you glue your fabric all the way around, leaving an inch or so on each corner. It dries super fast, but I gave it about 30 minutes in between drying and hanging.
Then hang your shades.
I think it substantially cozies the room up. Forgive the difference in lighting, one set of photos was taken in the AM and the other at night. The morning “before” picture on both is a truer reflection of the “blue” tone of the walls.
Why this Is Infinitely Better than Paying For Custom Roller Shades
Custom roller shades with specialty fabric can cost anywhere from $3-500 per shade or more (I am checking prices again Smith+Noble, an upscale custom shade shop) and could go even higher if you have any extra features and upgrades you get. It should be noted that my Ikea shades can go down, but if I want to draw them up, I have to take them off the mount and manually roll them or roll them with my hands.
Not ideal, but for $26 total (assuming you have the supplies and the shower curtain) you cannot beat the price.
I like the idea of giving the shower curtain a second life, and I liked that it came already hemmed so it looked a bit more finished than just gluing under would have.
Hope you guys enjoyed my custom window treatment hack!
Added 2021: This post is gracefully aging, and so there’s a lot to update you on.
- These window treatments were part of a larger renovation I did on this house. Here’s the full post on that $58k renovation.
- I sold the house in this post in 2018. Here’s the total post on how I used these window treatments (among other things!) to increase the value of my home and sell it for a lot of money.
- Here’s a post on real estate investing for beginners.
- I am now flipping houses. You can read about that here!
- Thinking of buying a home this year? Here’s a post on condo vs. house.