Monday, April 23, 2012

no-sew curtains & a diy curtain rod

I've been in a bit of a creative funk since I got back from Ireland a few weeks ago, but I finally got around to finishing a project that has been brewing in my mind for a long time.

I'm talking years.

I moved into my house 5 years ago, and for 5 years I have hated the horrible mini blinds in my bedroom. There are broken parts, and they just look ugly. This picture is the only one I could find that shows part of the window wall as it has looked for the last few years.

I wanted to replace them with curtains and I've been keeping my eyes open any time I'm in a store for something to stand out to me, but nothing ever did... until a couple of months ago. I finally found something that I love to use as curtains.

My other problem is that these windows are huge. They take up the entire wall which is 130 inches long, but most curtain rods are only a maximum of 120 inches. On the extremely rare occasion that I was able to find one that extended to 130 inches, they are crazy expensive. I don't want to spend over $50 on a pole, thank you very much.

My solution ~ electrical conduit!

This might not be a huge revelation to anyone else, but I had never thought of it. When I was in Home Depot buying it the guy who helped me cut it asked if I was making a long curtain rod, so I either look like someone who would make a long curtain rod, or this wasn't his first time helping someone buy it for that purpose. Whoever was the first to think of it is a genious though, because I spent a total of $5.

Electrical conduit comes in 10 foot lengths, so to get the 130 inches I needed I had to buy 2 of them and have them each cut to 65 inches (I wanted the seam to be in the middle rather than having 120 inches, a seam, and then the other 10 inches). You want the 1/2 inch size so it will fit into regular curtain rod brackets. The guy cut the conduit pieces for me, showed me the kind of coupling I needed to attach them, and in less than 5 minutes I was out the door.
All you do is just slide the conduit pieces into each end of the coupling and tighten the screws. Since my rod goes the entire length of the wall I didn't need finials and didn't even worry about the ends being open because you can't see them anyway, but if you were doing a shorter rod you could easily add finials to the ends.

I spray painted everything black and hung my rod with regular curtain rod brackets. Could not have been easier. You can see here that I hung the rod with the coupling screws facing down so they're not in the way of the curtain rings. Even though the coupling is slightly bigger than the conduit it still fit easily into the bracket.

For the curtains I used sheets. I found twin sheet sets on sale for $9 and bought 3 knowing the flat sheets would be perfect no-sew curtains. I hooked some curtain rings to the top and in minutes I had completely changed the look of my bedroom. I love how curtains do that. And I still have 3 fitted sheets and 3 pillow cases to use for other projects in the room. I've already started the first one using some of that extra fabric, so I'll show you that soon.

A close up of the pattern on the curtains. I love how they look against the 2 paint colors.

I still hate the blinds, but special ordering new ones in the gigantic sizes I need isn't in the budget right now. With the curtains I think they are less noticeable though, so for now I'm happy!

Linked to
I {heart} Nap Time
Keeping It Simple
Not JUST a Housewife
Ginger Snap Crafts
Clean & Scentsible


Anonymous said...

Those turned out great! I love the look. Who knew that electrical conduit would work as a curtain rod!? Brilliant.

Amy said...

What a cool idea! I'm in the process of switching from blinds to curtains in our house so this post came at the perfect time.

Tammy said...

What a great idea! Curtain rods can be soooo expensive!! I'm going to remember this the next time I need curtain rods. Thanks for sharing this with us :)

Angela Hunt said...

They turned out awesome!! Thanks for sharing!!! :) I love the curtain pattern as well!!

Etcetorize said...

Love your solution...looks great! I had to laugh when you said that you've been thinking about this for years, I'm the same way. I'll put up with something way longer than I need to and then am totally surprised just how easy it was to fix. Thanks for linking up at Etcetorize~

Simon said...
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