How to Make a No Sew Faux Roman Shade

Back in April I shared my kitchen makeover which included my DIY window treatment. Well, it's now July and I am FINALLY getting around to posting my tutorial. When I was working on my kitchen, I had purchased blinds on sale but they did not fit the feel of the space. I had a few different ideas for the window and ultimately decided to make the faux roman shade.

 I purchased a yard and a half of fabric on sale from Fabricland as well as three tension rods from Wal-Mart. I also picked up HeatnBond hem fuser as I don't have a sewing machine. This was my first project using the product and it was very straight forward in terms of instructions.

I measured my window and cut my fabric accordingly. I added a few inches to the width to make room for the hem and several inches to the length for the folds of the fabric that would become the shades. I then hemmed all four edges to hide where the fabric was cut. I ensured that the width of the fabric with the edges hemmed matched the width of the window.

Back side of the fabric after hemming the edges.

Back side of the fabric after hemming the edges.

 I inserted the first tension rod into the hem at the top of the fabric.

I hung this rod just above the window frame.  

Sorry for the terrible lighting!! The window blocked out and my terrible fluorescent kitchen lighting are a bad combo!

Sorry for the terrible lighting!! The window blocked out and my terrible fluorescent kitchen lighting are a bad combo!

I then hung the second and third rods several inches apart from one another.

Sorry for the terrible lighting!! The window blocked out and my terrible fluorescent kitchen lighting are a bad combo but you get the picture :) also, don't mind the crooked rods, the can be adjusted at the end.

Sorry for the terrible lighting!! The window blocked out and my terrible fluorescent kitchen lighting are a bad combo but you get the picture :) also, don't mind the crooked rods, the can be adjusted at the end.

Pull the fabric forward over the second rod and repeat over the third rod to create our shades.

Adjust the fabric and rods as needed. I used my level to make sure it looked straight and even. I also pinned the back of the fabric folds to keep the shades in place, as it was starting to shift when we opened the window and let a breeze through.

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This worked out perfect for our kitchen as a decorative accent and can be adjusted as needed for privacy or letting in sunlight. It is not as simple as pulling a string for blinds but it can be altered by moving the rods and fabric. I can also easily change the fabric for a different look or replace it all together as nothing is drilled in. Easy enough, right?!

Jess xx

Chalk Paint Kitchen Makeover + How to Paint Tile

My new year's resolution in 2015 was to update our kitchen. We had lived with dated oak cabinets and stained laminate counter tops for a few years and decided it was time for a facelift!

Our kitchen is small and lacking counter space and we were not prepared for a full blown renovation. The cabinets were in great shape and we liked the look of them, so we decided to paint and update the hardware. Given my love of chalk paint, it seemed like an easy choice. I spent a lot of time looking at tutorials on kitchen cabinets painted with chalk paint as it is a high traffic area that needs to be durable and easy to clean. I also looked up how to paint ceramic tile to update our backsplash –see ya later decorative tiles!!

Unfortunately, I don't have any 'BEFORE' shots before the doors and drawer fronts were removed. If you look past the lovely ladies in this photos you can get an idea what the cabinets looked like;

New Year's 2013!!

New Year's 2013!!

Here you can see the beautiful backsplash with burgundy flower tiles and the plain-jane laminate countertop.

Here you can see the beautiful backsplash with burgundy flower tiles and the plain-jane laminate countertop.

I wiped everything down well using a bit of TSP to remove any grease. Chalk paint essentially covers anything and everything therefore there is not much prep (hence why I love chalk paint!).  I chose Annie Sloan Plain White for the upper doors and French Linen for the drawers and lower doors. I painted the upper cabinets-without the doors first. I did not paint the interiors as they are already white-ish.

For the backsplash.  I used TSP to clean and degrease the tile. I let the tile and grout dry and applied Zinnser Bullseye Primer using a foam roller and paint brush for the grout.  Once the primer dried, I painted 2 coats of Behr Alkyd Semi Gloss Enamel Paint. Oil-base paint is recommended for tile and this paint has the durability of a traditional oil-base paint but the ease of a water-base + less odor. The decorative tiles are slightly raised in detail but once they were white, you barely noticed.

I am so happy with how bright and modern this looks. Almost like subway tile, right? :)

Next, I painted the cabinet doors and drawers. This was the most time consuming part of this project despite it being a small kitchen. I will admit, that after the first coat of French Linen, I was slightly horrified with how green it looked. I began to panic but felt better as it dried. 

It may not look green to you, but it did to me!!

It may not look green to you, but it did to me!!

 For the hardware I kept cost in mind, choosing a simple brushed nickel pull for all of the doors and a classic metal pull for the drawers.

Once all the doors and drawers were painted front and back, I started re-attaching the hinges and the new hardware. I was hosting my family that weekend and got a bit too excited to get everything re-hung. I decided to forgo sealing the cupboards right away, figuring I would get to it later.

Well, it took me a year to come back and complete it! A little advice-- DON'T SKIP THIS STEP!! I had to touch up most of the cabinets prior to sealing them because of my procrastination. I also sanded all of the surfaces lightly to remove any bumps and brush strokes before sealing.  I used a clear polyurethane meant for floors to seal the cabinets instead of clear wax as poly is much more durable and easier to wipe up any spills or scuffs.

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We waited a few weeks after painting before replacing the counter top (cost, time, laziness, etc). We measured the counter top and headed to Home Depot again. I love the look of Calcutta marble but knew I wasn’t going to pay for the higher end laminate because after all, it is laminate. After a few headaches with a sales associate, we ordered our custom counter top. We did not pay to have it installed as TK is very handy. When we picked it up, my heart sunk! The simple grey detail of the laminate appeared much more patterned than I was expecting and was screaming GREEN under the florescent light! What is it with the grey becoming green in this project?!? Once we got it home and next to the paint, I felt much better! Tk surprised me by recruiting some family and friends to help install it one weekend while I was working :) I think it complements the cupboards well and we couldn’t beat the price!

We kept our existing sink and replaced the faucet with one I found on sale at Lowe's. I was looking for something inexpensive and functional that went with the space. If you are are having trouble finding a faucet for your space and would appreciate helpful reviews and information prior to purchasing, check out https://www.reviews.com/kitchen-faucets/. Reviews.com provides useful, well written and trustworthy reviews on a variety of products. They do the research for you and provide honest feedback and suggestions. Their resource for kitchen faucets is incredibly helpful for anyone in the midst of a home reno that doesn’t have time to research another product. 

I made the roman blind for the window (will be posting a tutorial) and replaced the florescent light above the sink with a simple pendant.

I decided to get rid of the beige walls throughout the house and started with the kitchen. We used Behr Dolphin Fin which has a slight blue undertone to it in some lights, but overall I am happy with how it compliments the darker grey and bright white cabinets.

Before & After

Before & After

Pantry Before

Pantry Before

Pantry after

Pantry after

More recently, we were able to update some of our appliances (still waiting on a new fridge) and I also decided to paint our laminate flooring. 

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I love finding ways to make changes within our budget and I stay busy day dreaming about my next projects :)

Jess xx