The great debate

I absolutely love our house, but there were two things that I really disliked about our house when we looked at it. I knew both could be changed very easily, so I looked past it (and a lot of other things). Those two things are ceiling fans and mini blinds. I know that some people love ceiling fans and mini blinds, but I am definitely not one of them. When I say that there was a ceiling fan in every room where one would fit, I’m not exaggerating at all. You’ve seen the one that was in the entry way in this post and you can kinda see the one in our bedroom in this post. This one was in my creative space.

There was even one in the upstairs hallway that had a 15 foot string (maybe longer) that dangled down the stairs so it could be turned on from either floor of the house. Awesome.

Michael is a fan of fans…but I think that he could sense my disdain for them so those fans started coming down right away. We found some lights on sale at Menards for $7 each or Michael might have fought for the fans a little harder.

We still have two more that will need to come down when we start working on those rooms, but I have to find lights for them still. I’m waiting to see if Ikea (hallelujah)  comes out with a fixture that I can’t live without for the dining room and the closet this summer when the new catalog comes out.

It’s been quite the struggle to get rid of the mini blinds though. If it was up to me alone, all of the mini blinds would have come down right away and we would have lived with nothing on the windows until we decided on curtains, but since marriage is about compromise, the mini blinds have stayed. It’s been relatively easy for us to decide what we want to do in our house. Some things are a little more difficult, like the plan for the future kitchen, but I think the most difficult thing has been curtains. It really should not be this hard to decide what to hang on the windows. A couple weeks ago I was on Pinterest (when am I not?) and found some adorable half curtains for the kitchen.

From Woman's Day

That’s it! That’s what I want. Let in some light, but still have some privacy since our kitchen windows can be seen from the street…or the neighbors house. They were the perfect solution, I just had to find the right fabric! Remember that fabric I got at Wal-Mart a while back? No? I may have been slightly over-shadowed by my unnatural fear of Wal-Mart confession.

I used it to make half curtains that were hanging up on one window in the kitchen since I showed you the fabric. I put them up and immediately loved them, however our curtain debate continued. I love the half curtains, Michael hates them. Michael likes full curtains and while I have become a fan of the high and wide curtains, I am not with these – it just doesn’t work in the space. Michael would be okay with the half curtains if we had blinds behind them, while it would be an improvement from the red paper that covered the windows for a while, this chick does not like that…at all. I put up the half curtains in the window hoping that it would grow on Michael. That didn’t happen so it was time for me to face my fear again and head to Wal-Mart for more fabric.

With fabric in hand I headed home to make curtains to fit the full length of the window. My evening was filled with cutting, ironing and sewing but the curtains are up. I would have still liked the half curtains, but the full ones are much better than the mini blinds that were there. Don’t worry the blinds will not be going to waste…they will be re-purposed into something pretty. Want a hint? Check out my Inspired DIY board on Pinterest. But I digress.

To make the curtain I cut my fabric double the width and the exact size of the height since I knew I would be using ribbon for hanging and my curtain rods were $3 tension rods from Menards that would hang inside the window frame. I also decided to spray paint the rods copper to make them look a little more classy and I’m all about classy…well maybe not.

My windows were 28 inches wide and 36 inches tall so I cut my fabric to 36 inches and I used the width of the fabric for my width because it was close enough to the width I needed. I then cut the width in half so I would have two curtains and hemmed all sides in 3/8″ then folded them over another 1/2″. Seem tedious? Yeah, it kinda was. But it was worth it. After all the panels were ironed I added the ribbon hangers. To do that I cut 5 pieces of ribbon for each panel that was 12 inches long, folded it in half and then sewed them on by hand. The only reason I did this part by hand is that we were having a heat wave (heat index around 125) and our 100 year old house doesn’t have air conditioning in all rooms so my creative space/sewing room was hot! I was sewing one panel then going to cool down then back to sew another so it took quite a while to sew all of them with the breaks between each one but I finally got them done! To make sure I got the curtains at the right length, I hung up my pretty copper rods and took my pretty curtains and tied them in place there.

Once the curtains were hung, I had to break out some paint because the paint on the windows was chipping and falling off. This would be your classic “one thin leads to another” situation. I mean really, the windowsill looked like this

I want to make sure to tell you that I’m not thrilled by the fact that the fabulously gorgeous woodwork was painted and I promise that it won’t stay that way! When we do the big kitchen reno, we are planning to take off all the trim and strip all the paint off and stain it to match the rest of the woodwork in the house. I know that’s years down the road so with the help of Sherwin Williams, the woodwork around the windows in the kitchen got a fresh coat of Creamy paint. (Creamy is the color BTW, not a description of the paint consistency)

I’m glad I painted because the woodwork looks better solid than chipping and peeling and with the new curtains up, I love them!

Those blue bottles are temporarily there until I get started on the blue bottle tree we are going to make for the garden (posts here and here about the blue bottle tree). I’m hoping to get started on that next week after Michael and I decide on a final design for the tree. But I digress again…seriously, this is what it’s like to talk to me too. I have ADOS: Attention Deficit…Ooooo Shiny!

Project cost breakdown:

  • Two 28″ tension rods – $6
  • Two yards of fabric from WM – $14
  • Two rolls of green ribbon – $4
  • Copper paint – no cost, we had it our paint stash, but it was $7 when we bought it
  • Not having mini blinds in my kitchen anymore – priceless

Our kitchen and entry room are one big room so you can see the kitchen when you walk in the front door too which is how the color from our state canvases from yesterday ties into the rest of the room. It’s all in the curtains, but I’m doing a little painting in the kitchen too. I have quite a bit to do on that part before I post it. I promise to share once it’s completely done.

What do you think of the curtains? I had plans for pendant lights to take the place of those two fluorescent ones, but now I think I’m going to have to revamp that with the patter in the curtain. I don’t want to hide any of it! The most important thing I’ve learned in the last 20 months in our house is that the plans are constantly changing. That might be my ADOS though.

Anybody else still catching up from the Pinterest Challenge yesterday? I know I am. So many great projects to see!

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Categories: Let's shop!, Living Frugal, Projects, Tour | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “The great debate

  1. Mini blinds are the worst. Fans area close second (we have WAY too many in our house too). I really like the fabric you chose for the curtains … super cute! :)

    • I’m so glad to have someone on my side with this. I think I will have a big party when all the blinds are gone :)

      I’m really picky about curtains. Since I’m a make it myself kind of gal, I only want to make them once and when I saw that fabric, I knew it was perfect! Thanks for stopping by!

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