Faux Roman Shades

2 Materials
1 Hour
I like the look of Roman shades because they don’t cover much of the window when they are up, but still, they cover half the window and they can be expensive! So, last year I tried a DIY project for two of my kitchen windows that I saw online that required gluing a piece of fabric on cheap mini blinds to make Roman shades. When I finished, I stepped back and admired my project. Several days later, the plastic blinds broke with the extra weight of the fabric…on both windows.

So I bought bamboo shades for the windows. Didn’t like them. I still wanted the Roman shade look. Then I thought that I could duplicate the look of shades but control how much of the window would be covered.

I cut out a couple of pieces of scrap Waverly fabric that I had, hemmed the edges to the width of the windows (31 inches) by the length that I determined would look good (27 inches) and created pockets at the top and bottom and inserted a tension rod in each pocket.

I had a couple of tension rods in storage but you can find them at Wal-Mart for less than $3 each or from Amazon. I determined that I would use three rods for this project but you can use four if you want the shade to hang lower on the window. For four rods, the length would need to be at least 10 more inches.
Next, I hung the fabric on the top inside of the window.
I placed another tension rod in front of the fabric several inches below the top rod.
Then, I pulled the fabric over that second rod to create a ‘pouf.’
Finally, I put the bottom tension rod several inches below the middle rod and adjusted the bottom pouf.
I still have mini blind behind the shades for privacy but I only use them when I absolutely have to. Since I had most of the tension rods, this cost me virtually nothing, but if I had to buy the materials, I could for less than $10 a window.I got the look, without covering the window!

Suggested materials:

  • Fabric
  • Tension rod

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 6 questions
  • Kwe523 Kwe523 on Oct 14, 2017
    You mentioned Waverly fabric - does it matter what brand of fabric?

  • Kim Kim on Mar 04, 2020

    I love this idea. I will use it for the bottom half of my 6’ windows! Thank you

  • Lisa Lisa on Mar 29, 2021

    How to you get the material to stay? Mine is slipping down


Join the conversation

2 of 90 comments
  • Pam Melton Pam Melton on Jul 04, 2020

    Just made these for my son's house which we are staging to sell . They look terrific and have updated the house a lot! Thanks for a great idea!

  • Binky65 Binky65 on Dec 28, 2020

    Looks very nice....This would be great in my bathroom!