BLIND SAFETY
Blind Safety

This website is viewed globally and at the last time of looking had been used by people from 136 different countries.

The instructions and videos on this website show you the traditional methods of making a roman blind. Many countries have introduced safety regulations with respect to child safety, to reduce the threat of injury or strangulation to young children from the cords of roman blinds.

It is your responsibilty to find out what the regulations are for your country and modify these instructions to make your blind compliant with those regulations

Examples of safety advice and rules used by some countries of the world are:

  • Do not place furniture or beds near windows where children can climb up and access the blind cords.
  • For roman blinds with rod pockets greater than 20cms apart at any point a breakaway device must be used on each cord.
  • The cleat must be 150cms from the floor and accumulate all/most of the cord – only a single cord of no more than 20cms can hang below the cleat.
  • The bottom loop of the chain or cord must be 150cms from the floor and secured with a safety device OR If the operating chain/cord has a breakaway device then the bottom loop of the cord/chain can be 60cms from the floor.
  • Some countries require that all the blind's components have been tested and certified when used together.

BLIND SAFETY
Blind Safety

This website is viewed globally and at the last time of looking had been used by people from 136 different countries.

The instructions and videos on this website show you the traditional methods of making a roman blind. Many countries have introduced safety regulations with respect to child safety, to reduce the threat of injury or strangulation to young children from the cords of roman blinds.

It is your responsibilty to find out what the regulations are for your country and modify these instructions to make your blind compliant with those regulations

Examples of safety advice and rules used by some countries of the world are:

  • Do not place furniture or beds near windows where children can climb up and access the blind cords.
  • For roman blinds with rod pockets greater than 20cms apart at any point a breakaway device must be used on each cord.
  • The cleat must be 150cms from the floor and accumulate all/most of the cord – only a single cord of no more than 20cms can hang below the cleat.
  • The bottom loop of the chain or cord must be 150cms from the floor and secured with a safety device OR If the operating chain/cord has a breakaway device then the bottom loop of the cord/chain can be 60cms from the floor.
  • Some countries require that all the blind's components have been tested and certified when used together.

Materials
  • - Fabric
  • - Lining
  • - Thread
  • - Velcro Loop Tape
  • - Cord
  • - Rods
  • - Bottom Bar
  • - Rings
  • Tools
  • - Sewing Machine
  • - Tape Measure
  • - Needles
  • - Scissors
  • - Set Square
  • - Straight Edge
  • - Invisible Marker
  • Options
  • - Invisible Marker
  • - Velcro Hook Tape
  • - Screw Eyes
  • - Acorn
  • - Cleat Hook
  • - Cord
  • - Staple Gun
  • or
  • - Headrail Kit
  • - Hacksaw
  • Watch the videos for full step by step tution of the instructions and expert tips from the workshop

    Video User Comments

    I love your videos they have given me the confidence to make my own curtains and blinds....Julie

    Your videos are so good, thank you…..Alex

    Once again, I should say that I think the video tutorials are extremely well done. Although I've been sewing for years I've learnt lots of techniques that are new to me and that give a much more professional finish........Heather

    Thank you for such brilliant tutorials and videos....... ....Barbara

    I have absolutely loved your videos for curtain making, I have learnt so much from you….Charlotte

    Step 9: Insert Rods & Attach Rings
    Printable Worksheet
    Printable Worksheet
    • Cut the fibreglass rods approx 1cm shorter than the rod pocket lengths.
    • Insert the fibreglass rods into the pocket using end caps if you have them. Then hand sew the ends of the rod pockets closed.
    • Cut the aluminium bottom bar 2cm shorter than the bottom pocket.
    • Insert the bottom bar into the pocket using end caps if you have them. Then hand sew the ends of the pocket closed
    • Hand sew brass or plastic rings onto the positions marked on the back of the rod pockets. (check if there is any applicable child safety legislation in your country, for example some rules require break out devices instead of the rings.)

    if using ROD POCKET TAPE

    If you have used rod pocket tape rather than make traditional rod pockets, after inserting the rods into the tape fold the excess 1cm of tape over at each end and sew closed. You may not need to sew on rings as you may have fabric loops on the tape to thread the cord through instead.

    This video shows you
    • How to insert the rods and bar.
    • How to close the ends of the hem.
    • How to close the ends of the rod pockets.
    • How to sew the rings on.

    Extra Help & Comments

    Sew Helpful
    Post your questions and comments here, we will reply so everyone can see the answer. 
    Jo
    In the list of materials required for an interlined blind, you have a bottom bar  included, but there is no reference to it in the instructions. At what point is this fitted, if it is indeed necessary? I see that one is used in a lined blind (Step 9.4)
    Sew Helpful
    The bottom bar is inserted earlier in step 6 in an interlined blind. When you CUT AND INSERT THE INTERLING (at the bottom of the page) and sew up the mitres, see  lines 11 12 and 13.
    Val
    What are the dimensions for the bottom aluminium bar please. I can work out the length [2cm shorter than bottom pocket] but cannot find any reference to the other dimemsions. Thanks
    Sew Helpful
    The aluminium bar we use in the workshop is 25mm x 3mm. Many blind casettes come with a bottom bar  (which you usually find laying in the top) in ours they are 20mm x 4mm.
    Heidi
    I have made 3 roman blinds following your directions, one is 80inches wide and the fiberglass rods are bending, I have had to join 2 rods with a metal splicer, can you think why the rods may be bending, would the rod pockets be too tight?
    Sew Helpful
    We would not join rods, we would cut rods to the correct length with no joins. How many cords have you used pull the blind up and support the rods? It sounds like you do not have enough.
    heidi
    hi

    I can't find rods that are long enough from a store, I can only get 5 ft rods I need 80inches, is there something I can use from a DIY store?

    I am using 7 cords to pull up the blind, is this enough
    Sew Helpful
    We use continuous rods purchased from a UK wholesaler who only supplies to trade  in 3m lengths. 7 cords should be enough. Other reasons for sagging may be due to your stab stitching not being right.
    Petra
    Step 5 on this page: when and where do we mark positions of the rings on the backs of the rod pockets?
    Sew Helpful
    You would have marked the position of the rings in the previous page (STEP 8) when you marked and sewn in the stab stitches.
    Margaret Craig
    Hi, what is the diameter of the Rods you use please. I am looking at 4mm. I am concerned about the rods bending or does the number of cords you use ease this problem. thank you for your valuable help. I have 2 blinds to make soon and will definitely use your tutorial again.
    Sew Helpful
    We use 4mm fibreglass rods and they are fine (even on wide blinds). As you say the number of cords negates the problem of bending.

    Some cheap blind kits come with thinner rods, that size rod is fine on a light blind but we find 4mm is much better for the lined and interlined blinds we make. 
    Jackie
    How do you insert the rods when you have sewn the pockets(lining) to the main fabric. Should I have left each pocket open and sewn around them or do I cut through the lining
    Sew Helpful
    The rod pocket ends should be open at this stage. When you join the lining to the fabric in STEP 7, you slip stitch the lining to the fabric (Not stitching the ends of the rod pockets). It's all in the videos. 
    Pam
    I am making a blind 143 cms wide and relatively heavy with blackout lining and 180 cms long. How far apart should I position the rings to pull up the four rods
    Many thanks
    Sew Helpful
    STEP 8 gives guidance on the number of rings across the blind and their spacing see (stab stitching). If you are using a chain pull system make sure you use to number of cords supplied  and space appropriately as with the new breakout systems, each cord can only take so much weight before breaking away.
    Kate
    What do you use to cut the fibre glass rods with?
    Sew Helpful
    You can buy a tool which is like a small guillotine to cut them but it is quite expensive. Otherwise a junior hacksaw cutting the rod held in a vice is another way. They do splinter on the end so you will want to cut tight to the vice and make sure you have a good blade to get a clean cut. Also the splinters are very fine and quite nasty if you get them in your fingers so gloves are best.
    Kate
    Yes, I saw that mini guillotine, nice to have but a bit pricey! Will try the hacksaw method as there must be one somewhere amoungst my husband's DIY tools in the garage!
    Thanks for your advice.
    Kate
    Thanks for your advice about cutting the glass fibre rods – using a hacksaw worked well. Thought I'd pass on a few tips when using this method.

    1. IMPORTANT: wear rubber gloves thought out the process. Helpfull husband wore dust mask as well while cutting the rods for me.

    2. As you advised it is imperative to use a brand new hacksaw blade and if you are cutting lots of rods change the blade frequently.

    3. Wrap the cutting position with masking tape and make an initial
    saw cut all round the rod, this minimises glass fibre splinters.

    4. Carefully sand the end of the rod with fine glass paper. DON'T be
    tempted to pull off any raised fibres, they won't break off but will just continue pealing away! Snip them with scissors (not your best embroidery ones!) and smooth down with glass paper.

    5. I bought some of the tiny rod end caps. These are a very tight fit so I soaked them in boiling water with a little soap solution added to soften them. This made it much easier to get them onto the end of the rods using rubber gloves and a twisting motion to make sure they were fully on.

    Hope this advice helps any one not sure how to tackle this!
    Sew Helpful
    Thanks for your tips Kate, I'm sure they will help other people.
    Suzette Bradbury
    Do I attach the rings above or below the rod pockets since the stab stitches start above but end beow?
    Sew Helpful
    The stab stitches do not start and end below the rod pockets -see video on how to stab stitch. The videos also give a detailed close up of how and where to stitch the rings on.
    Carole jones
    I have reached stage 9 of your excellent step-by-step guide. I am using pocket rod tape but when I click on red advice line re
    Pocket tape there is no response. Please advise me on the information I cannot access. Thank you.
    Sew Helpful
    The text is

    If you have used rod pocket tape rather than make traditional rod pockets, after inserting the rods into the tape fold the excess 1cm of tape over at each end and sew closed. You may not need to sew on rings as you may have fabric loops on the tape to thread the cord through instead. 

    What are you viewing on. The text reveals when clicked on using our computers. 
    Liz
    I'm ready to sew on the rings. Do I attach along the seam of the rod pocket or at the top of the rod pocket? And, do I go through all layers? Thanks!
    Sew Helpful
    You sew the rings onto the rod pockets not the seam, the videos show you in detail how we stitch these on.
    Kathy
    How important is it for the rings to be exactly in alignment vertically? I have tried to do this but not 100% sure they are. Would it be advisable to hang the blind temporarily and use a plum line to ensure this or is it not really that important. Thanks
    Sew Helpful
    Your blind should be square and you should be able to measure in from the side to get all your rings in line with each other. 
    Jemima
    Is there a way you can make the rods and bottom bar removable so that the blind is washable? Maybe leave the rod pockets open at one end of something?
    Sew Helpful
    You can always unpick and re-stitch. and with rod pocket tape the rods can be slid in and out without unstitching.

    That said we would never wash a blind so always stich every thing in, in our experience they are never the same after. Different shrinkage rates between the lining and fabric are likely to cause it to pucker and it will most likely shrink and not be the same size after washing.
    Tanya
    Hi,
    Thanks for the fantastic instructions .
    I've read most of the queries and haven't found this question, so hopefully it's not a duplicate!
    I'm currently ordering my materials and have found the bottom bars to be really pricey (will be about £45 for my blind) do you have any advice on alternative options to weight the bottom of the blind?
    Thanks
    Sew Helpful
    £45 sounds a lot, how big is your blind?  Lots of blind headrail kits come with a bottom bar included. A quick look online shows you can get a 3m long bottom bar and 7 rods for under £20 plus delivery (I expect delivery might be high for such an awkward shaped item).

    We always use bottom bars as they weight and shape the bottom of the blind. 
    Tanya
    I've bought all of the items individually, but can only find 2 suppliers for the bottom bar. I probably should have gone for buying the set.
    The window is just over 4 metres wide and I'm dividing it into 3 blinds, so 2 3 bottom bars would be needed.
    I'll pop into a haberdashery if I can find one near by.
    Thanks
    Sew Helpful
    Try Merrick and Day online.
    Anna-Marie
    Hello, I have made a pair of curtains and have now nearly finished a blind, all with your instructions so thank you.

    I have come up against a problem however. I have a very wide, lined blind. The lining wasn't wide enough so I sewed on an extra panel. It means I have two little internal folds in the rod pocket and no way of getting the rod through. I noted your tip on using a second rod to avoid having that problem at the edge.

    Can you advise?

    Many thanks,
    Anna-Marie
    Sew Helpful

    The flaps inside a join on a rod pocket can be a pain. You generally have to push down on them to try and pop them into an open circle shape then pass the rod through. You quite often have to fiddle about to get the rod through the hole and not stuck in the flap.  Coming from the other side with another rod can help.

    If you have completely blocked it up by pushing against the flap you may have to snip it open on the rod pocket join, get the rod through then sew it back up. In future you could use bonda web on the pocket seams when making. Thats what we now do and will be including in our new instructions.
    Anna-Marie
    Thank you - I have snipped them open and am sewing up. The rods are now through.

    Anna-Marie

    Rose
    Hi, I'm a little concerned about my rod pockets bending. My blind is 193cm wide and I have made it from a blanket and blackout lining. My rods are 3mm and came with a Roman Blind Cassette kit. My pockets are 30cm apart on a length of 142cm. I have six strings with my kit, so I am hoping this will negate bending. I have seen a blind made using dowel as rods - quite wide dowel, about 2cm diameter. The rod pockets were larger to accommodate. I have sewn all my pockets at 1.5cm but guess I could put thinner dowel in. What is your opinion on dowel?
    Sew Helpful
    We use 4mm fibreglass rods and have never had a problem with bending (but we havent made a blind from a blanket). Ultimately you just need to try it and add extra cords and stab stitches if necessary.
    Millie
    Hi, I am about to make a blind which is 133 cm wide and 127 drop. Do you think 3 or 4 pull up cords would be better for the width and also how many rods would you have for the drop? Many thanks
    Sew Helpful
    4 or the number that were supplied with your headrail. The number of rings across the blind is covered in the previous step of the tutorial.
    Millie
    Hi, thank you for your response, I am actually using a wooden batten, as it is an odd size blind that I cannot get a headrail for. I will use 4 as recommend. I cannot see on the previous step the number of rods for 127 drop, do you think spacing them about 20 cm apart is ok? thanks
    Sew Helpful
    The number of rods is a design decision that you make and clculate in STEP 2. There is also a link to an online calculator there for you to play around with numbers.
    Paula
    I brought a blind kit and am thoroughly confused as it provides rods but also what I can guess is rod sleeves? They are a flat plastic with a round open edge which the rod fit's into?. I don't understand. Would attach a photo but don't seem to be able to
    Sew Helpful
    They may come with rod pocket tape that you can attach to the lining rather than make your own rod pockets from the lining. The tape is usually fabric though not plastic.

     
    Elaine
    I have purchased a manually aporated blind kit and I have used rod pocket tape for my Roman blind. However, I can't seem to work out how to attach the flat pieces of plastic strips onto the rods which are inserted in to the rod tape ?
    Sew Helpful
    Not sure!!

    Usually the rods go in the rod tape and the clips clip onto the loops of the rod tape.
    Kris
    Hi, Ai tried to make lined roman blind using this tutorial which is 215cms wide and 166cms long. It sags from middle and doesn't look that good. Is it because of width? I used 4mm fibre rods. Any suggestions please to make it look better. What is the maximum width I should go for with a roman blind?
    Sew Helpful
    A smaller blind is easier to make well and is best for beginners. Wider blinds are harder to make, they are  not easy to get straight and square - any small errors are amplified. They do require a lot of care when making up. Quite often the long bars in the bottom warp as well with heat.

    The fabric you use can be a factor as well, stiffer fabrics make up better. Also when you press you need to take care. Shrinkage can be a problem when pressing after made as there is such a large area of fabric and the fabric can shrink unevenly in places if you havent been careful, creating puckering.


    When making

    Did you make it using the techniques in the videos to get it square?
    Did you press the fabric before measuring and cutting it?
    Are all your stab stitches in place and done the way we showed in the video?
    When you stitched did you make sure all your stitching was in the same direction (as in the videos) and you weren’t stitching in from each end.

    It could be a hanging problem.

    Send us some photos to help@sew-helpful.com  and we will see if there is anything you may be able to tweak.

    Wide blinds are difficult, It can be done though here is a picture of one someone made using the tutorial. (see more on our Your Makes Page)

    wide blind


    Pat
    Hi I've made the roman blind,but cannot see where to sew the rings on. Do,I sew rings on the rods and folds or just the rods?
    Many thanks
    Sew Helpful
    The rings are attached to the rod pockets (Item 5 of the instructions on this page). See the diagram in STEP 8 also.
    Angela
    Is it necessary to insert a bar at the bottom? Is it just a case of style and taste rather than necessary. When I made roman blinds years ago I did not have a rigid bottom and it always appeared to hang OK to me.
    Sew Helpful
    We insert a bar to give the blind weight when it pulls down and hold it's shape. You are free to make it how you like though.
    Lisa Nicholas
    Where can I buy cleat hook, 3mm end rod caps and plastic rings with hook on them to put on the rods please?
    Sew Helpful
    We buy wholesale, for small purcases try collybrook fine furnishings online shop

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