Monday, August 9, 2010

My No-Brainer DIY $5 Window Treatments

I can't say that this is anything spectacular but it looks good, was insanely cheap and easy, and gets the job done! My 18 month old son was up with (or before) the sun, so I needed a very dark window covering. Because I am me, I didn't want to spend any real money on it. So here's what I did:
First I bought two very dark blue twin flat sheets at the Evil Empire (that's WalMart, of course) for $7 total. Their length and width was exactly what I needed, when turned sideways, for the dimensions of the windows (one sheet = two curtain panels). When cut in half, I needed to only hem one side of each panel, and was able to use the other hems as already finished edges. So, no work there!
At the top, I folded over a few inches and stitched it to make a tube for the rod to go thru. I could have gotten fancy and added a ruffle at the top by simply adding one more straight stitch an inch or so down from the top, but I chose to be lazy. :)

Because I didn't want my darling husband to be pulling on the rods every time he wanted to open the curtains (the sunlight is good in this room when the curtains are open, so we don't need the lamp on all the time) I made some very easy-to-use tie-back hooks. This was the fun part:

First, I invested in 4 mug hooks. TIP: Cup hooks, which are a little small and cheaper, may have worked a little better. I originally wanted to put them on the side of the trim, but the size made it impossible to screw them in. Then I took felt scraps, cut out star shapes in graduated sizes, glued them on top of one another, and glued an elastic hair band to the back. I glued another felt strip over the band on the back for stability. Finally, I glued the elastic band to the hook so that it wasn't always falling off.

Then I drilled a tiny hole in the wood and screwed the hook in by hand. (Instead of drilling, you can hammer a tiny nail into the wall and then remove it to make the pilot hole.)

Now, whenever we need it to be dark we let the curtains hang, and when we need some light we use our elastic loops to hold them open. So easy! And cheap. And fun. And, if you can find a used sheet or curtain or material to use, it'll be green, too!

I'm overestimating the total cost at $5 per window. It's probably more like $4, but I can't find my receipt for the hooks, and we'll just say $5 in case you're buying everything new.

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