There are 2 types of pattern repeat on a patterned fabric, Horizontal and Vertical. We are generally more interested in the vertical pattern repeat when making curtains and blinds and if only one pattern repeat is given by a manufacturer we would expect it to be the vertical one.
VERTICAL PATTERN REPEAT
The distance up or down the fabric, the pattern repeats itself.
HORIZONTAL PATTERN REPEAT
The distance across the fabric, the pattern repeats itself.
Thank you for your excellent worksheets and videos. The blind I’m about to make has a finished width of 141 cm and the fabric is 141cm in width. It is fairly plain and, having seen an earlier reply to a similar query, it could work horizontally but the blind is in the same room as curtains at a floor to ceiling window and they will be in the same fabric so it wouldn’t work on this occasion. A contrast strip is also not an option. What do you think would the best solution here please? Thank you!
Unfortunately if your fabric isn’t wide enough you have no alternative but to add on either side.
If it’s a plain then I would reduce the size of the centre panel and have the side sections approx 10cm each. Good luck. Cindy
I have a large width window, so I have added panels to each side. I'm wondering if I should iron open (like a butterfly) the seam allowance on the back or iron both layers to one side. Ironing to the side would lesson the amount of fabric design that might show through. However, I'm worried that it will be too bulky. I will also be adding lining but am turning it horizontal, so I won't need to have any seams in it. Any advice would be appreciated.
There are merits to both options with the seam. I normally open them up like a butterfly, particularly if you are working with a woven or chunkier fabric. If the central panel is paler fabric, the it would make sense to press them towards the side panels. There is no definitive right or wrong but, if it were me, I would open them up like a butterfly.
Regarding railroading your lining - you sound like you have made blinds before and used the lining sideways before so know what you’re doing. I would add that, in my experience, some linings do not make up well when used like this. I’m not exactly sure why but it appears the lining moves more when making rod pockets up along the length potentially causing a loss in accuracy. I tend to join lining widths in the same way as face fabric but make sure you use tiny tacking stitches to hold the seam open before sticking in the rod pocket otherwise you won’t get the old through later in the make up process. Good Luck.
How much fabric for a blind 170 wide, 99 drop. Fabric 140, pattern repeat 31cm. Customer wants central panel and 2 narrow side panel
We don't make calculations for people. If you are making curtains professionally for people you need to be able to work this out. A central panel with 2 narrow side panels is the standard way to make the blind.
Hi I am making a roman blind or attempting to ! The material I have is 137 wide and that leaves 3.5cm each side for turning in the edge, however I have read that you should have 5cm each side for edging. will i get away with it do you think ?
It is possible but not ideal. If we were making for a customer we would also consider making the blind with a contrast border down each side.
I hope you can help. I am planning on making a Roman blind with blackout lining. My question is would light come through the rod pocket sewing holes in the blackout fabric? Also would you advise using inter lining and blackout lining together?
I hope you can help. I am planning on making a Roman blind with blackout lining. My question is would light come through the rod pocket sewing holes in the blackout fabric? Also would you advise using interring and blackout lining together?
I am making two blinds to go side by side on the same window. The window is very wide, and I felt that two blinds meeting in the middle would be less likely to sag, and also allow me to open one to open the side part of the window and let air in while keeping the other one lowered. I'm using a patterned fabric - would it be better to pattern match across the two blinds so that it looks like one continuous pattern, or make the two blinds identical, which may mean that the patterns don't match at the join?
This is a design decision and we have done both.
Your pattern will be a factor. If you match the pattern across there may be alot of wastage (especially with a wide horizontal pattern repeat) and you will really need to think about it before making up, you'll need to mark it out and take into account the side turns.
Matching the pattern across blinds
Blinds all balanced with a centalsised pattern and the same.
Hello, I am going to attempt to make a roman blind for our bay window. The central window is: 225cm finished width and 193cm finished drop whilst the two surrounding windows are 60 cm finished width and 193cm finished drop.
This will be my first attempt at a blind and unfortunately I seem to have chosen a rather ambitious fabric to work with...It is 140cm wide so I will need two widths for the central window. However it is a geometric pattern which starts off larger on the one side of the fabric and then gets smaller to the other side. It also has a repeated pattern which is at a height of 63cm.
For the central window, I believe I should have one width as a central panel and cut the other width into two, line up the pattern and sew it on to either side. Once this is done the pattern should flow from medium size, to large, to medium, to small then back to medium!!
As if this wasnt complicated enough, I then feel that this should flow through to the windows either side! Do you think that this is even possible?! If it is, how much fabric should I order to ensure Ive made allowance for not only keeping the height of the repeat pattern at the same height across all 3 windows, but also trying to continue the pattern from large to small?! Im determined to do this myself but im a bit worried that I might have bitten off more than I can chew!!
I dont think you could have been much more ambitious, your 3 main challenges will be
1. Making a large blind
2. Matching Pattern repeats
3. Fitting to a bay
When making a large blind we would strongly recommend using a geared chain mechanism due to the blinds weight. You will probably find a normal one wont actually work (check what you are buying)
The fabric pattern sounds a bit strange and we are wondering if it is a half drop pattern repeat. There is a tutorial on the website explaining half drop pattern repeats (check with your fabric supplier what the pattern repeats are and if it is a half drop)
We would also make the 3 blinds so the pattern flows continuously from blind to blind. Unfortunately we do not make peoples fabric calculations for them.
When fitting to a bay we would fit the rails/battens first and then measure. Because the rails/battens sit out from the windows you would probably find you make the blinds slightly too wide if you measure directly from the window. Generally we would fit the rails with approx a 2cm gap between them where the blinds will butt up against each other and have the rails 1cm shorter than the finished width of the blind. This would give us 1cm sideways adjustment when fitting each blind without exposing the headrail, to make sure the blinds hang nicely alongside each other and dont knock on each other when pulling up. (note we fit blinds in a bay so the ends butt against each other not overlapping. The 1cm/2cm figures are general and we vary them a bit depending on the bay)
My window is 142 cms wide by 125 cms drop. The fabric I am working with has a very large pattern repeat of 64 cms. Would you advise me if I should position the start of the pattern at the top of the blind or at the hemline.
Also do you think that this pattern size is too large for this size window.I have a large kitchen diner and I am making full length curtains in the same fabric for the other windows.
We would position the pattern at the top of the blind so it looks right
when the blind is pulled up which is the position it will be in most of
There is no problem with a large pattern repeat on a blind providing there is plenty going on within the pattern.
Thank you so much for your advice regarding where to position the start of the pattern on the Roman blind.
I will be hanging a full length door curtain next to this window should I position the start of the pattern at the heading rather than ending the pattern at the hemline?
Also I will be hanging full length curtains from a pole in the dining room end (it's a kitchen diner) should I position the start of the pattern at the heading for this window as well or would it be better to finish the pattern at the hemline
Generally we would position the pattern in the best place at the bottom
of a curtain. However when fitting to more than one curtain or blind to a
room we would also consider placing patterns so they all line up at the
same level around the room. This is basically a design decision that
only you can make based on the pattern and your window layout in the
Hello. Thank you so much for such a brilliant tutorial. I would be grateful for some more advice.
Although I only need 1 width of fabric I have decided to use the fabric horizontally simply because I can centralise the pattern to the window size and get a more balanced effect. I have enough fabric for the finished drop including the hem and heading allowance but ideally I would like to join on a small amount at the heading so that the top of the blind included a whole pattern. If I do this I would end up with a join in the fabric 6 cms down from the finished edge of the heading. The top of the window is fairly high so I don't think the join would show too much.
I realise that this may not be the norm but do you think that in this case it would be acceptable to have join 6 cms down from the top.
We would never put a join there.
I am making two roman blinds with a drop of 199cms. The pattern repeat is 35cms. I calculate the fabric cut drop to be 213cms. I divide the cut drop by the pattern repeat and the result is 6.0857. Do I really have to adjust this up to the nearest whole number ie7?
You dont have to but if you want the pattern to start at the same point
on each blind so they are the same (and look professional) you need to
cut the fabric in whole pattern repeats. You can either make the blind
with 6 pattern repeats which will give you a cut drop of 210cm and try
and make the blind with 3cm less fabric In the top and hem or round up
to 7 pattern repeats as we suggest.
Hello - simple question...does the fabric for a Roman blind, cover the mechanism at the end of the fixing or do I make the fabric marginally narrower ?
You'll find the answer to this in Step 10. You make the blind to the
width required for the window. Then you cut down the mechanism or make
the batten 1cm shorter than the width of the blind. This enables you to
slightly adjust the position of the blind without exposing the batten/
mechanism at the end.
Note the blind only attaches to the face of the batten/mechanism it does not attach to the sides of the end.
Hi. I am making a roman blind. I have a window 171cm wide & am using a fabric 145cm wide. I believe I need two separate 145cm widths of fabric, placing a whole piece centrally & then cutting the 2nd panel in half, & joining the two halves vertically to either side of the central piece. Is that correct? Having 2 vertical seams? It just seems strange to me to have 2 vertical seams on a roman blind. Am I misunderstanding the information I've been given?
No you are understanding it right. You can make your blind with a seam
down the middle if you like, there are no set rules. The reason we
choose not to is that your eye is drawn to the centre of the blind and
the first thing you will notice is the seam straight down the middle. In
our opinion with the 2 seams to each side it looks more asthetically
pleasing and balanced.
Hi, my window is 145cm wide and the Fabric 150cm. Will it work to just make a 2.5cm hem on either side. Exstra stitching, but dont know what else to do.
We make blinds with a 5cm side turn on each side. We haven't made one
reducing it down to 2.5cm so can't advise. If you decide to reduce down
to 2.5cm to avoid joining fabric, you will need to increase the width of
the lining panel accordingly.
I had two things to ask about, one more technical relating one-bend bay window and another to ask your opinion about fabric choices.
This will be my first time making blinds so am a little jittery about what to do.
I have a one-bend 90 degree bay window which is set back into a recess with no space above the window for fixing the brackets, so will have to be ceiling fixed and inside recess blinds. It measures approx. 65cm for the small window on one side of bay, and 242cm for the large window. The larger window is made up of 61cm - 120cm - 61cm, so I'm thinking to do 3 x blinds instead of 1 x 242cm blind.
I see from previous replies that you normally leave a gap of 1-2cm between each batten so they butt up to each other (which I guess I will do for the large window), but in regards to battens that meet in the corner, would I need to deduct the projection of the ceiling bracket from the length of each corner blind?
With regards to the fabric, I am a bit lost. All the walls in the room are of a soft subtle cream/white colour and there is a feature wall of a cream coloured wallpaper with A gold flock pattern design. Looking at the window, the feature wall is to the right of the 242cm window - in your opinion, would you go for a plain style fabric or a patterned one? I am not sure if a similar flock pattern material would be overkill, or if something like flowers or stripes would be a clash. I know its a design choice and really my decision but just wanted to know if you use a general rule for this kind of thing?
242cm is a "big blind" especially if it is your first time making roman
blinds. We wouldn't go for the big blind. It is hard to comment on the
number and split of blinds without seeing the room and window (its a
design decision on what you think looks best). If you are making blinds
for the bay fit the battens first with the approriate gaps between, then
measure for the size of the blinds from faces of the fitted battens.
Generally it is best to have worked out your wallpaper, paint and fabric scheme at the start all in one go before you do anything. It can be tricky to match and tie your fabric in later when you have already picked the wallpaper and paint. This is really a personal decision, without seeing the room, windows, colours and sizes of the potential pattern blocks on the walls and windows relative to the plains it is impossible to say. (thats where a good interior designer earns their money). We just did a room with a large feature wall in Farrow and Ball wallpaper, Farrow and Ball matching paint and a large Plain fabric curtain that colour matched nicely. That did look good.
As you are new to making blinds and going around a bay a plain is definitely an easier option as you do not have to match the pattern all the way around the bay across the blinds. If you want a little more than a plain you can always contrast trim along the edge or bottom to try and tie in some other colours.
I have completed 2 blinds using your tutorial which I have found to be very helpful. For the third blind, the finished width is 145cm but my fabric is 145cm wide so I will need to join two panels. Would you add 1 narrow strip on each side, or make up the width by using 3 equal panels?
With Patterned Fabric
1.We would go for 2 edge strips.
With Plain Fabric we would
2. See if we could use the fabric horizontally if it looked ok and the drop could be contained within the fabric width to avoid joining.
3.Consider a contrast border fabric.
4.Go for edge strips rather than 3 panels.
Saying that there are no rules if you think 3 panels look better go for that.
Really looking forward to making my blinds. Just a quick questions, my finished blind will measure 105.2cm in height and 158.7 in width. Is it possible to turn the fabric on it's side so I only need one piece of fabric? I'll use a plain coloured fabric.
Thank in advance for your help.
Yes that will work, you'll avoid making any joins and require less fabric provided it is a standard width of approx 137cm.
I'm making a roman blind finished width 98cm 10 cm added on for side turnings.
finished length is 89cm I have added 5cm for heading & 10cm on for the hem.
the fabric is 131.5 cm.
I have worked out I will need 1.04m of fabric.is this correct, also do I have to worry about pattern repeat if I don't have to join widths.
1.03m is the minimum fabric you would need to make the blind as you only need 9cm for the hem rather than 10cm. We would probably order a little extra though as your fabric may not be cut straight and may need trimming square.
Your question about not worrying about pattern repeat if not joining widths does raise a few points though (I will rewrite and clarify the instructions for the patterned fabric - good question).
If you are making a single blind with no joined widths from a patterned fabric you do not need an adjusted cut drop and the fabric required will be the same as for a plain fabric*.
If you are making only one blind and it requires joined widths you will need to use adjusted cut drops*.
If you are making more than one blind for the room and want all the blinds to start at the same point in the pattern (something we do ) you will need to use adjusted cut drops regardless of whether the blinds have joined widths or not*.
*However if you want to place the pattern on the blind or blinds (usually so it falls nicely when the blind is in the up position- something we do) You will need to add an extra vertical pattern repeat length of fabric to the fabric order to position the pattern. - Note only 1 pattern repeat NOT 1 per blind.
I am a little confused I have chosen a fabric for some roman blinds and they tell me the vertical repeat is 135cm? am I right in thinking I will only require 1 fabric width (fabric is 135 wide)as my window is 105cm wide by 125cm drop and a fabric drop of 139cm? therefore I would have to order 2m of fabric?
One width is fine, 139cm length is the minimum fabric you will need to
make your blind if the finished length is 125cm. Any extra fabric would
be used to position the pattern on the blind. Whether you would want to
buy an extra 1.35m (full pattern repeat) to position the pattern depends
on the style and pattern of the fabric.
Hello! I'm making a long blind 130x240 using plain fabric which is 147 wide. Is there anything that I should be aware of if I use the fabric horizontally and not vertically to avoid joins. Thank you kindly
No, if you are happy with the grain and the way the fabric looks hanging
horizontally it will work and save you 2 joins and some fabric.
Hi, I’m attempting to make a roman blind for my bedroom, my window is 180cm wide x 120cm drop. The fabric that I want to use has is 140cm wide and has a pattern repeat of 62cm. I think I will need 310cm of fabric. Is this correct?
I'm afraid we don't make calculations for people. We would just turn into a 24hr calculation service.
3.10m is not right though it doesn't look like you are calculating an adjusted cut drop, which you need because you have fabric joins in your blind .
In your example you are going to need 2 drops of fabric. Because the fabric has a pattern they need to be Adjusted Cut Drops (ACDs). So as per the instructions First work out what your normal "Fabric Cut Drop" is
Fabric Cut Drop = Blind length + 5cm Heading allowance + 9cm Hem allowance
then increase the " Fabric Cut Drop" figure up to the next number of whole pattern repeats to get your "Adjusted Cut Drop". eg 2 pattern repeats would be 124cm 3 pattern repeats 186cm etc. That is effectively what the method above to calculate the Adjusted Cut Drop is doing.
So you will need 2 Adjusted Cut Drops (that would be the absolute minimum amount of fabric to make the blind). However we also add in 1 pattern repeat extra (62cm in your case) to position the pattern on the blind.
So does that mean in this example
Fabric cut drop = 120cm Blind Length + 5cm Heading + 9cm Hem =134cm
Adjusted Cut drop = 186cm (3 pattern repeats)
Fabric total = 2 Adjusted cut drops + 1 Pattern repeat
= 186 +186 + 62
Hi I am making roman blind for bay 250 cm wide and 128cm drop. Could I use material horizontally instead of joining two drops?
You can use fabric horizontally and we have done it many times with
plain fabric on blinds. Check you are happy with the way the grain and
weave looks when sideways.
The width of your fabric will need to be wider than the cut drop of the fabric. Remember that is blind drop plus the hem and heading allowances. that will be 128 + 5 + 9 =142cm.
You are going to have to check the width of the fabric, most fabric is usually 137cm wide (which wouldn't be enough).
Hi, I am making 2 Roman blinds. I require 158 cm of fabric for each blind and am 10cm short of the fabric I have. Would it be possible to make the top and bottom hems slightly shorter on each to save buying another length of fabric? Why does the bottom hem have to be 9cm rather than 5cm like the top? Thanks
The bottom hem is a double fold to enclose the bottom bar that is why it is 9cm.
If you dont want to buy new fabric and make it the way we do in the workshop, you may get away with attaching some lining to the bottom to form the bottom hem (assuming you are 5cm short for each blind not 10cm). This will not be as good as doing it properly and leave a join on the back, but you wont see it from the front. (note you will lose some length joining so make sure you have enough fabric to get the join on the back not the face of the blind.)
Hello, thanks for this tutorial, I have made a plain blind using it and it's been really helpful. I am now challenging myself to make two other blinds with a patterned fabric. The fabric pattern has a vertical repeat of 31.1 cm and a horizontal repeat of 15.24 cm. I am slightly confused as to what repeat to use for the fabric calculations... does that depend on the orientation of the fabric that I will chose? Ideally I would like to use the vertical repeat, but considering that the finished blinds measurements are 164Wx130L and 133Wx132L centimetres, how much fabric do you think I should order? I have come up with 7 Metres in total. Thanks in advance for any tip!
You use the vertical pattern repeat assuming you are hanging the fabric vertically.
I'm afraid we do not make calculations for people. (we would be flooded with requests)
Got everything to make my blind apart from a set square & I can't seem to find one anywhere!!!
Found a company on ebay but they've let me down.
Please can you advise me.
try merrick and day online
Hello, thanks for all the wealth of information on these pages and in the videos.
My daughter has bought fabric that she fell in love with for me to make her a lined Roman blind, but it's only the finished blind width plus 4cm, instead of the 8cm I need (I'm using blackout lining). It's too expensive to buy the same amount again. Can I join a 2cm binding tape (bias binding?) to each side of the face fabric and then slipstitch the other edge of the tape to the lining?
In the workroom we would
a. Purchase the correct amount of fabric. Or
b. Add a contrast border to each side.
if neither option is possible you can add lining to each side as it will be folded behind the blind.
When calculating the drop, do you need to allow extra fabric for the rod pockets?
No the rod pockets are made from the lining or with rod pocket tape
attached to the lining. That is covered later when you calculate lining
quantities in the next STEP.
I want to make a roman blind for a bedroom window using material from curtains from another bedroom. They would need to have a join as the curtain length is shorter than the window where the roman blind is needed.Is it possible to make a join across the blind to add length?
It can be done but we would never do that.
hi, is the 5cm heading allowance you mention to add the same thing as the 7.9cm headrail allowance im going to be using?
The heading allowance is the extra fabric or lining you need to fold over at the top of the blind when you make it.
The Headrail allowance is a figure you need when calculating the spacing of the folds. It is the extra space you need at the top of the blind so the rings don't hit the rail when the blind is pulled up. There is a BLOG article that explains headrail allowance in detail.
Hello, really great instructions. I am trying to use some fabric that I already have for this project however my width is 4cm too short. Can I get away with 3cm side hems?
You can (not best practice), You will probably be better off making the lining wider (only 1cm gap down each side)
I have calculated my heading allowance as 8.5cm. to get folds etc according to your calculator it will be 9.1cm Just wondering when I work out cut length of fabric do I use finished length plus 8.5cm heading and 9cm hem allowance rather than 5cm you quote ?
You are getting a bit mixed up with the figures and terminology. the
“Finished length of the blind” includes a “Headrail allowance” the
heading of the blind is formed using a “Heading allowance”. They are
My window is approx 6ft wide and my chosen fabric is 4ft wide. Should I join the fabric down the middle or on either side of the blind?
The answer is further on in the tutorial in STEP 6. We always have a central panel with a strip joined each side.
I intend to make a blind which will be 180cm wide but only 110cm drop. I thought I would use material horizontally so that I won't need to join widths. I have taken on board your comments on check fabric but would it still apply if I use it horizontally, and what about a stripe fabric used this way? Your advice would be appreciated.
Every fabric is different some will work fine others may cause problems.
There is no reason a check or stripe should not work used horizontally.
You just need to take into account the potential bend in the stripe or
check you can get with some fabrics. When picking your fabric, roll it
out and see if it is going to cause you this type of problem.