Make Your Own Shade Screens

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  • 1 hours
  • Beginner
  • 0-150
What You'll Need
Screen material
Sewing machine
Heavy dowel
Ribbon or twine

A shade screen can add comfort to any patio or large window. Not only will they look great on your windows, they can save you money on your utility bills if made correctly. These types of screens are commonly seen in sunrooms and on large bay or picture windows. Here’s an easy way to create your own.

Step 1- Measure the Window

The first step is to measure the size of all the windows you are making shades for. You will want to add several inches to each window’s measurements to allow for waste. Write this number down to take with you when you purchase your material.

Step 2 - Choose a Material

You can find material that is made specifically for shades. This fabric uses an oversize yarn with an irregular weave. They typically will block up to 90 percent of the sun's heat and UV rays. You can choose to use whatever kind of fabric you wish, but the screen material will be a better choice if you are wanting to make the room more energy efficient.

Step 3 - Cut the Fabric

pile of fabric samples

Once you get home with your materials cut the fabric to match the width of the window. Add two inches to the width, and add several inches to the length. Mark the material for the hem and add a double hem with your sewing machine. The top hem should be a little wider to accommodate the dowel.

Step 4 - Attach the Dowel

Place your dowel through the hem at the top of the shade. You can attach the dowel to the window using hanging brackets on the inside of the window. If you don’t want as clean of a look, install the dowel on the outside of the window. This choice is yours and will simply depend on your taste. Be sure the dowel fits in the bracket tightly so it won’t fall back or slide out.

Step 5 - Finishing Touches

Using the twine or ribbon you’ve purchased, roll the shade up and tie it back in place. If you prefer to keep the window covered, just use the ribbon or tie as decoration. It’s important to note this homemade shade isn’t meant to roll up and let down regularly. You can tie them back if you are expecting company or want to spruce the room up a bit, but in general these should be kept down most of the time.

Creating your own shade screen is easy and can usually be done in the same amount of time it takes you to sew a hem. Since shade screens are so simple to make, you can change them out often for a fresh look.