19 September 2013

DIY pelmet boxes: hanging & the reveal!

Hey errbody, today’s the final installment of my DIY pelmets! Get it? Installment? That bad pun means it’s time to get these suckers on the wall.

As you’ll remember, I made the pelmets with foam-core board and upholstered them with Waverly Chippendale Fretwork fabric.

But, first: how I hung the pelmet for the little dormer window. As I showed you, it was basically just an upholstered rectangle:

I intentionally made it exactly as wide as the walls around the window. Which meant that when it came to “hanging”... I just shoved it up there.

Ta-da! Hangerless hanging! If only the other two pelmets would be so easy to hang.

Before I get to those, though, can I just take two seconds to tell you how darn excited I am about the pelmet in this dormer window? I’ve been wondering how on earth to dress this little vertically-challenged window ever since we moved in. Floor-length curtains didn’t seem right, short curtains didn’t seem right, but this pelmet? GOOD to GO. High five!

Now. As for those other, much more giant windows... they required actual hangers to suspend them from the wall. So, I took a tip from Jenny (who inspired this project, remember!) and bought a few sets of L-brackets. I found them in the hardware aisle at Lowe’s, where they were something like $2 for a set of 4.

To attach them to the pelmets, I first made super-sure the fabric was secured to the foam-core board with a few extra staples:

Then hot glue. Lots and lots and lots of hot glue. I’m not joking when I say I went through more than four mini glue sticks to attach eight brackets onto the two pelmet boxes (two brackets per side – one near the top, one near the bottom).

As needed, I trimmed away the batting so the bracket and glue would adhere directly to the foam-core board. If these fall off the wall, it won’t be because the brackets weren’t secured to the pelmets!

It will be because they are held up there with single nails that aren’t even all the way in the wall. Or, more accurately, with crossed fingers and good intentions.

If we weren’t renting, and if these were MY walls, and I could abuse them to my liking, I’d get out my drill and make the holes (and put in anchors, if they weren’t plaster) and use a stubby little screwdriver that would fit behind the box to secure these to the wall forever and ever, amen. But these aren’t my walls. And so they are held up with a grand total of seven skinny nails between the two pelmets – which, considering how lightweight these are, is possible, but perhaps not the best idea. Still... so far, so good!

Figuring out where to hang these was a bit tricky. On the left window, I had the diagonal sloped wall to contend with. I wanted the pelmet as high as possible, with its corner against the diagonal wall, so that we could easily access the pull-down blinds without reaching high up behind the pelmet. I also didn’t really want ANY sunlight blocked. Sunlight is a natural resource in every single room, and I wouldn’t squander any of it, which meant the pelmets needed to be as high as possible.

So, we started with the left pelmet, and with Mr. P stood on one counter-height barstool, holding the pelmet whole thing up. I scurried around him, eyeballing it to make sure it was level and the right height. I also made blind marks where the brackets were, so I would know where to hammer in the nails. We waited to mark the right pelmet until the left pelmet was hung, so it would be the same height.

And honestly, I think we did a pretty good job.


We managed to get them pretty darn close to the same height, and I’m proud that I remembered to make the pattern fall in the same place on both pelmets.

The pelmets are, admittedly, sort of a mess on the inside of the “wings”, with the raw fabric edges and staples and duct tape and globs of hot glue and exposed foam-core board. But, once the curtains were arranged up against them, you can’t even tell!

The blue fabric is fantastic. Although the color might make the walls look a bit pinker (ugghhhh), the blue does tie in perfectly with the art over our bed.

My worries about the potentially wonky sides turned out to be for naught, too. Although there is an obvious seam on one side of the one pelmet (because the fabric wasn’t wide enough to be one continuous piece, remember), it doesn’t look out of place at all even if you do notice it.

And it’s not obvious that the right pelmet isn’t a true box until you’re right up under it, checking it out.

As a matter of fact... they look pretty darn amazing from afar. Which means I’m THRILLED that when I come home, and turn my head just to the left, this is the view I see:

There’s still work to be done in the master bedroom – clearly, we’re still duvet-cover-less, and I have GOT to get an ottoman or something to hide the array of outlets between the windows... among other things. BUT! I’m on my way, right? It looks like we’re making ourselves right at home.

Time for a breakdown, yes? YES.

Time spent:
Most of my free time one weekend, so let’s say about six hours. Not counting time spent shopping for supplies, or hanging them up with Mr. P. And honestly, I don’t know WHY they took me that long to make. But it wasn’t something I whipped up in a few hours.

Foam-core board: $9 for six sheets from Michael’s
Waverly fabric: $10 for two yards (50% off, plus another 50% off thanks to a cashier error) from JoAnn
Batting: $8 for two yards (40% off with a coupon) from Hobby Lobby
L-brackets: $8 for 12; I only used 8 but have yet to return the extras, so $8 it is
Miscellaneous supplies (scissors and rulers, duct tape, stapler, glue gun, hem tape, nails, etc.): already owned
Total cost: $35 for three pelmets

So! There you have it. I’m still the biggest fan of long white curtains that you’ve ever seen... but I’m also a fan of getting some color up there, too. And now I want to make pelmets for ALL my windows. Unfortunately I can’t, because of weird slanted wall angles... so I’mma just need you to make some for yourself, for me. Go for it, dear readers!


Rachel C said...

Yay for window updates. I love the fabric and how it tries in with your bedroom artwork. I think you've inspired me to finally hang the white Vivian curtains I bought in March. :-)

Also, relating back to your white office lamp, did you see Sara at Thrifty Decor Chick's navy blue bedroom lamps? I think navy lamps with the white shades would be fantastic in your office. It's a pop of color but still a neutral.

Tina said...

I really like your proportions so much more than the ones on the host website - yours look great! (Wondering if the backs are visible from outside 3 stories up...?)
Remember how what comes around goes around in decor? The pelmet boxes on practically every window on Baker road constructed from .5" plywood? Fancy,heavy suckers! That I took my life in my hands removing in the 80's??? Yours are way more practical.:-)

Tina said...

There is a third way to accomplish the pelmet look by using a 1x3 board a little wider than the window frame and stapling your material (sew three sides and turn right side out for visible finished edges)to the top of the board on three sides. Attach your L-brackets to the bottom back of the board and screw, nail, whatever (hot glue nor duct tape will not be secure enough in this case =P)to the wall and you have soft pelmets. You've seen them in this house once upon a time... Just another option for diy.
The former owner of the Baker Rd. house said he paid over $400/window dressing in the 70's! That's why it took me so long to undo them, I guess...

Christal said...

I want to live in your house.