How To Turn Plain Roller Shades Into Works Of Art With Paint And Fabric

Roller shades are ideal for blocking out light and protecting your privacy, but many of them are quite basic in appearance. Even if you picked out a fabric or vinyl for the shades in your favorite color, you'll eventually think about changing them to freshen up the decor of your room. Instead of buying new roller shades to get a change, try painting the material or applying a layer of patterned fabric for a fun new look.

Painting a Roller Shade

Fabric roller shades are easily painted with any acrylic paint as long as you mix in the recommended amount of a fabric medium liquid. If you have vinyl shades instead, you'll need a vinyl specific primer first, then your favorite acrylic paint. To save a step, try a spray paint designed for use on fabric and vinyl so there's no need to wait on primer to dry.

Take the shade down and unroll it completely to paint. Consider marking out a geometric pattern, like trendy chevrons, with painter's tape and then roll, spray, or dab on the paint. You can also try free-handing artistic designs with a brush if you are artistically inclined. You can even treat the shade like a canvas and paint a portrait of your family, create a beautiful landscape, or just go wild with abstract splashes of color.

Covering a Roller Shade with Fabric

Start by picking a fabric that isn't too thick. The thin cotton used for making quilts is a good choice, but any fabric that thin or thinner should work just as well. Quilting cotton is a good place to look for bright colors and fun patterns as well. Measure your roller shades when they're fully extended and buy a piece of fabric that will fit over the entire shade with at least one inch of extra material in every direction.

Coat the outside of the extended roller shade with a spray adhesive that works on fabric and vinyl. Arrange the fabric over the shade so any designs or patterns are centered, then smooth the fabric onto the shade from the middle outward to minimize wrinkles and bubbles. If a wrinkle forms, gently lift the fabric back up and straighten it out. Trim the excess fabric with sharp shears when you are done. The adhesive will likely recommend a certain amount of curing time. Once that time period has passed, your fabric-covered shades are ready to be reinstalled and put to good use.

For more information about care and maintenance of your roller shades, contact companies like Sylvan's & Phillip's.