Custom Fabric Roller Shade

Transform a plain roller shade into a custom window treatment that complements your decor by replacing the vinyl with fabric and adding decorative trim.

transform plain roller shade into custom treatment

transform plain roller shade into custom treatment

Roller-style window shades are great for privacy, but most are awful for style. Fortunately, it's easy to keep the handy roller mechanism and replace the vinyl with a fabric that matches the rest of the decor. Trim and tassels give a finished, stylish look.

Materials and Tools:

store-bought roller shade
measuring tape
staple gun or heavy-duty, double-stick tape
fusible webbing
decorative trim
decorative tassel
fabric glue
hot glue gun and glue sticks


1. Unroll the shade and remove the original fabric or vinyl from the cardboard tube. (It may be necessary to remove some staples.) If there is a wood or plastic strip at the bottom of the shade, remove that also.

2. Measure the piece of fabric or vinyl removed from the shade. Add two inches to the width and four inches to the height and cut the shade fabric and lining fabric to these dimensions.

3. Press both pieces of fabric. Apply fusible webbing to the lining fabric, rough side down. Peel off the paper backing and iron the shade fabric to the webbing. If the fusible webbing isn't wide enough to cover the entire shade, work in sections.

4. On the lining side of the fabric, use a yardstick and pencil to mark cut lines for the width of the shade. Cut the window shade to the same width as the original shade, keeping the cuts as straight as possible. Apply fray-stop along the edges as needed.

5. Line up the top of the fabric shade with the cardboard tube, making sure the roller mechanism is going the right way. Hot-glue the fabric to the tube, running a bead of glue the entire length of the tube. Roll the shade once around the tube and glue again. Roll up the shade.

6. Run a bead of hot glue along the bottom edge of the fabric shade and glue on the plastic or wood strip from the original shade. Fold the fabric around the strip and glue again. Hot-glue decorative trim along the bottom of the shade; add a decorative tassel if desired. Once all the glue is dry, mount the shade in the window.

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