How to make button blinds
You will need:
- Velcro tape
- Satin ribbon
- Tailor's chalk or pencil
- Needle and thimble
- Set square
- 1.5cm batten
Most of us want at least one room in the house to be light and airy and those heavy velvet curtains you inherited do not scream ''light and airy''! What you want is a lightweight dressing for your window like our easy-to-make button blind. They're simple to make, so give them a go.
Time to complete the job: 4 hours
Approximate budget: £30
Step 1: Prepare the fabric
Using the ruler and set square, measure and cut the fabric so that it is 6cm wider than your window. Turn over 1.5cm along one edge and then turn over the same again. This will be the seam. Neatly stitch the seam and repeat for the other side.
Tip: Choose a light, soft fabric so that the folds of your button blind will lie easily against one another.
Step 2: Make the top and bottom
Cut the fabric 16cm longer than the final length of the blind.
To create the top panel where the buttons will go, turn over 6cm of fabric and then turn over the same again. Neatly stitch this seam.
To create the bottom slot for the batten, turn over 2cm of the fabric and then turn over the same again. Stitch this, taking care to keep your stitches along the inside edge of this seam, creating a tubular pocket for the 1.5cm batten.
Step 3: Add the buttons
The blind has five buttons. Place one button at each edge of the top panel. Place another in the centre. Then measure the centres between the middle button and the outer two to find the positions of the fourth and fifth buttons.
Stitch on the buttons securely with double thread.
Tip: This is a good moment to employ your thimble! It will help you push the needle through the holes on the button.
Step 4: Pin the ribbon
The exact positioning of the satin ribbon to form the loops that will fasten to the buttons depends on the length of your window and the size you want your folds. But spacing two ribbons 58cm apart, with the top ribbon 58cm from the line of buttons, should work for an average-sized window.
Whatever size you choose for your folds, arrange them so that the bottom of the blind coincides with the bottom of the folds.
Pin the first ribbon 58cm from the line of buttons, then fold it up to the buttons, lining it up carefully.
Place a pin in the ribbon at the centre of each button. Then pin 2cm either side of the centre pin. Repeat for the other button positions.
Step 5: Sew the ribbons
Remove the centre pins and stitch the ribbon to the fabric, leaving 4cm loops opposite the buttons.
Repeat for the other satin ribbon(s).
Step 6: Fasten the buttons
Every project has an easy bit and this is it! Make your folds as you successively fasten the satin loops to the buttons.
Step 7: Add the bottom batten
Make the 1.5cm batten slightly narrower than the blind. Slide it into the tube you created at the bottom of the blind and secure with a few stitches each side.
Step 8: Add the top batten
Fix one side of the Velcro tape to the back of the blind's top panel and the other to a 4cm batten cut to fit your window.
Press the two together and your button blind is ready to wow your window.