When we moved into our house almost four years ago, we were that house on our street with no window coverings and blinds, except in our master bedroom. The windows stayed undressed and exposed to the neighbourhood for…ohhh, you know, three years!
After “refreshing” our kitchen (more on that in another post), our two windows in our kitchen sat naked, without blinds, in full view of our neighbour’s back deck. Sure, our neighbour never used the back deck, so we technically had privacy in our kitchen, but the space was missing something. It needed blinds.
Ted and I searched around to find the perfect blind — one that was not fussy, could be rolled up completely to let in the beautiful daylight, but also could easily be closed in the evening so our neighbours, should they wish to use their back deck, wouldn’t see us (meaning me!) sneaking into the fridge at night for a late-night snack wearing nothing more than my nightgown!
We decided that we wanted to go with a roller shade in a natural fabric. Simple, right? Yep! Expensive? Oh yeah! Some local blind and window covering stores were quoting us a few hundred dollars for custom blinds. With two windows, I was not prepared to fork over $500-600 for roller blinds. So, the windows sat naked for another three months…until, I had a stroke of genius one night!
Most big box hardware stores, like Home Depot, carry in-stock roller blinds that can be cut-to-size in store, like these ones, which we ended up purchasing. For a fraction of the cost of custom blinds (we paid $70 a blind), these roller shades were exactly what we wanted. The only problem is that these blinds did not come with a valance. And, as you can see, they needed a valance! Who wants to look at all of the guts of the roller shade? Not me!
Roller shade without valance
After a stroll through the store, we ended up in the trim section and found a length of wood veneer crown moulding that is used to finish off kitchen cabinets. The one length was long enough to make two valances to cover the unattractive guts of our roller shade. Best of it, the trim was approximately $20.
Wood veneer crowd moulding
Then, the tricky part — figuring out how to mount the crown moulding to the roller shade to create a valance (at 10pm on a Sunday evening). Thankfully, my husband Ted is a super handy guy with every tool in the world. He used some strips of 1″ pine, which he screwed (very carefully) into the back of the trim. He then drilled holes in the pine so he could use some screws to fasten the valance to the upper sill of the window. By this point, it was almost midnight, hence the lack of photos and proper instructions to share with you all! :)
Anyway, after some crafty handiness courtesy of Ted, the blinds with valances were installed and looking awesome, not to mention easy to use and functional.
The final product – roller shade with custom valance
Best of all, for $140 in blinds, plus $20 in moulding (and some hardware and pine that we already had), this cost effective project was more than half the price of the custom blinds we almost resorted to, until I had my stroke of genius!
This is a project that an experienced DIYer could handle. The trickiest part was finding a way to fasten the crown moulding to the window. Also, tools like a drill and table saw made this job much easier. Oh, and a handy hubby. Thanks hunny!