Home > Mom's window shades

Mom's window shades

June 26th, 2016 at 03:19 pm

One of the very last things I took from my mother's condo, after the buyer had already committed to the purchase, was my mother's handmade window shades.

I always liked them and I know it was a lot of work for her to make shades for all the windows in her condo. So I took them, not being at all sure they'd be the right size for my windows.

This morning as I lay in bed trying to decide on the day's agenda, it suddenly occurred to me that I should delve into the shades which were dumped in my basement 9 months ago. The longer they sat down there, the more dirty/dusty and possibly unusable they'd become.

That spurred me into action and I'm happy to say, I got my 2 front, east-facing windows covered. These windows have been problematic for me because while I have wood shutters covering the bottom, I chose to leave the tops bare. No privacy issues here. Yet the summer sun is quite strong and pours in these windows from sunrise to about 1 p.m., and ever since one of the giant pine trees in the row along the road came down in a storm, there's a big gap in the middle of that row of trees and even more sun hits the house. Good in winter, not so great in summer.

When you don't have central air, covering up sunny windows is very important. These should help the house stay cool

Here's what it looks like now:

This is the front window in the living room. Do you think it looks funny to have bottom half shutter, top half blind? Be honest.

I'll try to take pix this afternoon when sun changes position so you can get a better view. One of the dining room windows had a white lacy curtain on top, but I think it looks too granny-like:

I like a more contemporary look.

The fabric is a nice canvas type muslin or something, off-white, and she used a wood beam at the top, which I screwed into the wall, and little wood dowels that span the width of the curtains for the rows between the square-shaped blocks.

Her condo windows were much wider than mine, but not as long, vertical-wise. I had to (bravely) cut the wood beam at top in the middle and then I had 2 shades that covered my windows pretty well width-wise, but are about 5 inches too short. That's why it's good I already have the shutters up, becus you'd never notice they were short and I would never have them down all the way.

So I have 2 curtains up and would like to do the 2nd window in the dining room. That would still leave me with enough curtains to cover 3 more windows but I may stop there due to their being short and just save them in case I do ever move.

Looking at these shades more closely I now realized, in my mother's sewing supplies, why she had so many small white plastic circles. She used them to thread the strings in back of the shades. Smile I thought they were very cleverly made. She used velcro to attach the top of the shades to the wood bar at top, which in turn is screwed into the window.

In other news, I found a new place for "Celebration."

I moved this piece from mom's condo last May, and it was so big and bulky my handyman and I just parked it in front of an old wood chest I have, and there it stayed, blocking the chest and taking up a lot of space. But I've had so many other things to attend to. Now that a big chunk of the artwork has been donated, I was able to move Celebration from the living room to the dining room hallway. It doesn't seem in the way there.

For the first time I was able to get a really good look at the baby robins today. Each time I'd looked before, mama Robin was on the nest, and I didn't want to disturb her. This time, I'm guessing she was off hunting. Still couldn't see much with the naked eye, with all the mountain laurel branches in the way, but with the binoculars, wow, what a difference. I was able to see there are 3 baby robins, and after just 1 week since fledging, they are pretty big. The 3 were all sitting there with their mouths wide open and I could see clear down their throats! Waiting for food to arrive.

By next weekend, they should be ready to leave the nest, and I'm very anxious for them to do so becus then I can clean all the leaves that have collected on the patio below them, hang up 3 new macrame plant hangers in the shade of the rhododendrons and prune some nearby boxwoods. And vacuum my car, and water some plants. I've been trying to not make a lot of disturbance in their vicinity.

So for the rest of today, not sure what I'll do. I was trying to push myself to visit Promisek, a garden that is only open 1 day each month in the summer. But I'd be perfectly happy spending the day cooking up something good for the coming workweek, reading, tending to my garden and what not. Which is what I'll probably end up doing.

I'm taking this Friday off from work which means I only have to drive in to the office 2 days and work at home the other two. Sweet.

Yesterday's doings:

1. Drove up to gallery to collect 3 pieces she framed for me. We always have a nice talk when I go up there. I also gave her some of my mother's art supplies I thought she could use, including a large roll of plastic to wrap framed pieces in, and panes of 12 x 16 glass. I am trashing and recycling some old used metal frames.

2. Stopped at the organic farm and bought a head of lettuce. The Farmer's Market begins this Tuesday for the season and now that they're open til 6 pm, I can scoot over right after work (on a work from home day, conveniently) and browse the market, which they've expanded to include homemade foods and food vendor trucks.

3. Stopped at Bed Bath & Beyond, wanting to use up the $55 balance on an old gift card. I spent it on one of those new outdoor garden hoses that's made of a very lightweight fabric that is a heck of a lot easier to drag around than the rubber hoses. It was very expensive for what it is, but I think it will be worth it becus I HATE dragging heavy 100 ft. long hoses around the driveway and lawn.

4. Filled up the gas tank at BJs.

5. Stocked up on cat food at WalMart, plus cat litter.
I had a bit of a scare after bringing Waldo back from vet becus even after he got his allergy shot and was breathing so much better, he wasn't eating all day Friday, so he missed getting both his meds. I spoke to vet and scheduled another visit for Tuesday for full body x-ray to look for cancer. I was very worried.

Then, like magic, Waldo appears famished by Saturday afternoon. Vet had said the shot, which is a steroid, increases appetite, but maybe it takes a while for this particular effect to kick in. He seems like his old loving self again. So I'm pretty sure, as long as nothing else changes again, that I can cancel the Tuesday afternoon appointment with vet.

8 Responses to “Mom's window shades”

  1. Carol Says:

    Mom's shades look fine over the shutters. Would a white simple valance work in the dining room instead of the lace or do you want to try the shades there too.(or is their color too dark?)
    Those open baby robin mouths are so insistent--I have such sympathy for the mom.
    Good health to Waldo!

  2. househopeful Says:

    I love the look of the shades over the shutters. So happy to hear Waldo is doing better!

  3. ThriftoRama Says:

    Hmmm. Did the condo buyer say anything? Usually the window coverings are written into the contract as included with the house. That's standard where we are at least!

  4. PatientSaver Says:

    Window shades are up for discussion if a buyer is interested, or if a seller is inclined to leave them. In this case, she didn't want them.

  5. Turtle Lover Says:

    I think the shades / shutters look great! I knew somebody who had custom shades made that did the same thing ... so maybe it's a style. :-) Also glad Waldo is doing better.

  6. ThriftoRama Says:


  7. rob62521 Says:

    Those are great shades and I don't think they look odd at all with the shutters. Good use of them.

  8. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    I like the shades.

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