DIY Flat Roman Shade Tutorial

roman shade

Hey, friends! Today I will show you how to make a DIY Roman shade for your windows. This is an intermediate project; with a little work, add some style and privacy to your home. Let’s get started!

Roman shade


Step 1: Measure your window and cut your fabric. You want to add about 3 inches to the width and 8 inches to the length of your window measurements for your decorative fabric and lining (-1″ of finished width and cut length same as decorative fabric cut length. This will allow for some extra fabric to fold over the edges and create the top and bottom hem.

Step 2: Lay decorative fabric right side up and place lining fabric right side down. Hem the first side of your fabric and lining (optional) pin them together and sew a 1/2″ hem in your fabric. Pull the lining to the opposite side of the decorative fabric and repeat the process.

Step 3: Center the lining fabric on the back of the decorative fabric Take a ruler and try to measure equal amounts on each side. If you are using a pattern be mindful of that. Before pinning down make sure you have the correct final width. Once you have it pinned sew 1/2” hem across the bottom.

Step 4: Turn the shade right side out and press the seams flat. Fold the bottom edge up about 3″ (make sure you have enough fabric for your final length; more is okay. You need at least 1′ at the top for your top hem. If not adjust your bottom hem size accordingly. Once it’s correct hem across the top and about 1 inch down each side this will hold your weighted bottom bar.

Step 5: Make your line fold marks using the formula below. 

roman shade

Step 6: For this project, I am using rib tape and plastic ribs. Once you have determined the placement; secure your rib tape well by ironing it in place. You can make your own holders by using fabric and fabric tape to create a pocket for your rib or dowels.

Step 7: We are now ready to close our top hem. Check your length if you have more cut-off excess from the top. Fold over at least an inch and pin the Velcro loop on top.  Place a hem on top and bottom.


Step 8: To add the rings to the Roman shade, place them on every other rib tape line or fold. It’s important to ensure that the rings are spaced no more than 15 inches apart. This will help to achieve a neat and uniform look.  TIP: When attaching the rings to the Roman shade, make sure to pierce through the front of the fabric and pull it all the way through to the back. This ensures that the rings are securely in place and the shade will function properly. 

roman shade


Step 9: Let’s move on to preparing the header for the shade. Cut the 1x3x2 pine board to a length that is about 1/4 inch shorter than the width of your window sill, if you’re planning to mount the shade inside the window. Then, use a staple gun to cover the board with decorative fabric. Once that’s done, add the hook part of the Velcro and secure it with the staple gun at the top and bottom of the board.

Step 10: Now, it’s time to attach the header to the Roman shade and mark the cord lock and eye screw position. To do this, I’ll pull the top of the Roman shade down to the rings and place a mark on the header that lines up with each line of rings. You can place the cord lock on the side of the shade where you want to use it. Use a punch tool to make a drill hole for your eye screws and cord lock and attach the hardware.


Step 11: To secure the lifting cord, tie the cord around the ring located on the opposite side of the cord lock. Make a knot about three times, but don’t cut the cord yet. To determine the required length, thread the cord across the header of the shade and halfway down the cord lock’s side. Now, cut your cord and thread it through the rings on the shade. Then, pass the cord through the eye screws and feed it through the larger side of the cord lock. Repeat this process for all cords on the opposite side of the cord lock.

Step 12: To secure the cord on the side of the cord lock, tie it to the lower ring. Before trimming the cord, thread it through the shade, across to the cord lock, and halfway down the shade. Once in position, cut the cord and thread it through the rings and eye screw. The single cord should be inserted through the small window of the cord lock. TIP: You can use a cord condenser and cord pull if you like or you can just knot the cords off.


Step 13: For installing an inside mount shade, I first predrill two #14 x 2 1/2″ wood screws in the covered header until they come out of the opposite side of the board. Then, I take the shade to the window and use a drill to attach it to the top of the window frame. I make sure to set it back about 1/4 inch in the window sill for proper placement.

Step 14: To ensure that the cord lock functions correctly, it is necessary to place the weight bottom bar inside the bottom hem opening that was created earlier.


And that’s it! You’ve just made a flat Roman shade for your window. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and found it helpful. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below. Thanks for reading!






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Belle Omniley
Belle Omniley

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