How to Hang Window Blinds
Hanging Window Blinds
Blinds provide simple, attractive and sometimes sophisticated ways of screening windows. Most are available in standard sizes, but they can be made to measure or cut to size at home. Although simple in appearance, some blinds incorporate refined opening-and-closing mechanisms.
- Tape measure
- Spirit level
- Power drill
- Masonry bits
- Wood bits
- Tenon saw
Easy-to-fit roller blinds
A wide range of low-cost roller blinds can be bought in kit form. A typical kit consists of a wooden roller with two end caps, one of them spring-loaded to work the blind, two support brackets, a narrow lath, and a pull cord with a knob. Similar kits have aluminium rollers with a different type of return mechanism. Rollers come in several lengths; unless you find one that fits your window exactly, get the next largest size and cut it to the required length. You can buy fabric separately and cut it to width and length.
Fitting a wooden roller
If you decide to fit the roller inside the window recess, place the brackets in the top corners of the window frame. Remove the right-hand end cap by pulling out the round pin from the roller. Cut the roller to fit between the brackets, replace the cap and drive in the pin.
If you want to hang the roller outside the window recess, cut the roller 100mm (4in) longer than the width of the opening. Fit the brackets by drilling and plugging the wall.
Attaching the fabric
Roller-blind fabric must be non-fraying to avoid hems at the sides, and it should be cut precisely or it will not run evenly on the roller. Cut the width to fit between the two end caps, and the length to cover the window plus an extra 200mm (8in).
Make a bottom hem 6mm (1/4in) wide, then turn it up to form a sleeve for the lath.
Glue and tack the other end of the fabric to the roller, taking care to align the top edge with the roller’s axis. Fix the pull cord to the lath with the smallprovided.
Adjusting the roller action
To adjust a spring-loaded action, hold the roller with its flat peg on the left and roll the fabric up so that it hangs from the roller’s far side. Place the roller in the brackets and unroll the blind completely; then make it return by giving it a slight pull to release the spring catch. If it returns sluggishly, pull it halfway down, then lift it off the brackets, roll it up fully by hand and replace it. If it now flies back too violently, take the rolled-up blind off the brackets, unwind it a little and replace it.
Horizontal blinds, or Venetian blinds as they are more often called, provide a stylish treatment for most windows.
They come in a range of standard sizes, and can be made to measure. They are usually made of metal and are available in a range of coloured finishes, including special effects such as mirror, marble and perforated slats. Wooden-slat versions are also made.
Putting up a Venetian blind
If you plan to hang the blind in a window recess, measure the width at the top and bottom of the opening. If the dimensions differ, use the smaller one. Allow about 9mm (3/8in) clearance at each end. Screw the fixing brackets in place so that the blind, when hanging, will clear any window catches or handles. Set the end brackets about 75mm (3in) in from the ends of the blind’s headrail.
Mount the headrail in the brackets. Some are simply clamped, while others are locked in place by acatch on each bracket. Raise and lower the blind to check the mechanism is working freely. To lower the blind, pull the cord across the front of the blind, to release the lock mechanism, and let it slide through your hand. Tilt the slats by rotating the control wand.
Hanging a blind at an angle
Venetian blinds can be specified for use on a sloping window. Thread the guide lines (they prevent the blind sagging) through holes punched in the slats. These lines are fixed at each end to the headrail and are held taut by fixing brackets at the bottom.
Sophisticated Vertical Blinds
Like Venetian blinds, vertical blinds suit simple modern interiors and work well with large picture windows and patio doors. The blinds hang from an aluminium headtrack that houses the mechanism and is fixed to brackets screwed to the wall or ceiling; the vanes are simply clipped into hooks on the headtrack and linked together by short chains at the bottom. Weights fitted into bottom pockets ensure that the vanes hang straight.
Fixing the track
Mark a guide line on the wall, ceiling or window soffit. Allow sufficient clearance for the rotating vanes to clear obstacles such as window or door handles. Drill, plug andthe mounting brackets in place and clip the track into the brackets.
Hang the pre-assembled vanes on the headtrack hooks, first checking that the hooks are facing the same way and that you are attaching the vanes with the seams facing in the same direction.