I’ve been sewing up roman blinds for my kitchen for the last week or so. Fully interlined and lined roman blinds are not exactly what I would call simple to make. I have two windows in my kitchen, one is small (36″x34″) and the one pictured above is large (54″x61″). The large one faces almost due West, and in the summer it is extremely hot on that side of the house, as you can imagine. We can literally cook eggs on the metal frame outside the window. So I wanted interlined blinds to help keep the heat at bay.
I have a couple of great books for sewing home decor that I referred to, but I really wanted a step-by-step tutorial, and found this little beauty at Sew-Helpful.com which laid everything out, including a fabric calculator to the nearest half-centimetre. This was the first time making fully interlined roman blinds, and with the help of a friend and constant references to the online tute, I made these up.
I’ll confess that the small one was much easier to do than the large one, and yet I still had to re-do parts of it because I’m not a home dec expert. The quote I was given to have these blinds sewn up professionally was $1500 + tax, which was a little out of our budget, to say the least. After reading posts on Stitcher’s Guild and wandering down the linked rabbit trails, I discovered that custom roman blinds are high-priced because there is a lot of hand sewing involved.
Let me just tell you, that is 100% true, and I now understand completely why the quote was so expensive. The only part of these blinds that are machine stitched are the channels for the 5mm rods and the velcro tape at the top edge. E.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. else is hand stitched.
The bottom and side hem allowances are catchstitched to the interlining, as is the bottom hem. The lining is fell-stitched to the blind; the little rings are hand tacked, and every 15 cm or so along each rod pocket are tiny stab stitches through all thicknesses to keep the layers from ballooning.I would never in a million years have thought so much hand work goes into home dec sewing. Or space requirements. Yup. I think this is probably the biggest reason that I would
One of the conundrums was the width of the large window, as I wasn’t sure the fabric was wide enough to do the blind without joining widths. I bought enough fabric thinking I would have to join widths, but when the bolt arrived, I was pleasantly surprised to realize I could cheat a little on the sides’ turn allowance and not join widths. I actually had enough left to have a cushion made up for the front entry way because of this little (2 cm wide) cheat on the sides.I’ll admit to redoing a few turning allowances more than once on both blinds, and that the large one is not 100% custom-made perfect, but I’m pleased with them, and have a tremendous amount of respect for custom drapery costs. I do have interlined drapes that need to be done (eventually) for my living room, and I’ll just say that I am going to be quite pleased to pay the cost for excellent custom work when the time comes.