Make an Energy-Saving Roman Shade

The following directions are for an inside-mounted Roman shade:
Article Type: 
Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Decorator cover fabric
Insulated lining
Strips of ring tape
Cord 21/2 times the total length of ring tape
Screw eyes 1"x2" board as long as window opening
Rod 1/2" shorter than board


  1.  Measure the height and width of the window opening.  Add 4" to the height measurement for    mounting the shade.
  2. The cover fabric (drapery fabric of your choice) should be 4" wider and 3" longer than these measurements.  (If the window is wider than 45" add another 1/2" to the width.)
  3. Buy an insulated lining.  It should be the same length as the length of step 1 but 2" less in width.  (If the window is wider than 45" the  material should only be 11/2" less in width.)
  4. Right sides together, stitch lining and cover fabric together at sides with a 1/2" seam. Turn right side out.  Cover fabric should overlap about 11/2" on each side.  Stitch top edges together.
  5. Press up 3" hem.  Hem can be sewn now or after shade is mounted.
  6. Cut enough strips of ring tape to go every 6-12" apart from top to bottom of shade.  The bottom ring should be about 4" from top edge.
    Make sure the top ring is not placed in the 4" left at the top for mounting.  The rings must be in the same horizontal position all across the shade so it will draw into even folds. Pin in place.
  7. Stitch tapes in place on both sides using a zipper foot.
  8. Cut a 1"x2" board to fit inside the window frame.  Attach screw eyes to the board to correspond with ring tape placement.
  9. Tack or staple shade to board on side opposite screw eyes.
  10. Cut cords for each ring tape (lengths will vary).  Tie each cord to bottom ring and string through rest of rings to corresponding screw eye and then across board through necessary screw eyes.  Leave about 1 yard of each cord hanging together on one side of the board.
  11. At the bottom of each ring tape sew a loop or string to hold the weight bar after the shade is installed.
  12. Install the board to the top of the window frame.  Angle brackets can be used on each side.
  13. Release shade to full length and tie all cords together outside the last screw eye.  Cut off all but one cord.  Use this cord to lower and raise the shade.
  14. Place 3/8" weight bar (steel rod or curtain rod) in loops at bottom of shade.
  15. Attach cleat to side of window frame and wind cord around it to hold shade at desired height.
  16. Magnetic strips or velcro can be attached to both shade and window frame for a tight seal when the shade is down.