How To Add a Privacy Liner to Bamboo Blinds & an FAQ

Love the look of bamboo Roman shades, but hate that they’re see through?  Here’s how to add a privacy liner to bamboo blinds so you can get the look for less!

Back in 2010, I took budget bamboo blinds and made them both private and insulated, and I did it on the cheap. I never knew that it would become such a popular post! Since then, it’s become one of my most visited posts and I decided that I would update it with more info I’ve picked up over the years.

DIY Privacy Liner Bamboo Blinds

In my apartment living room I replaced my white plastic blinds with bamboo roman shades. I saved a ton of dough by opting for the unlined blinds in my living room and dining room-turned-office. . . but they allowed both strangers’ eyes and cold drafts straight through the windows.  So, in one afternoon I DIY’ed them into insulated, privacy bamboo shades.   Here’s the scoop

DIY Privacy Lined Bamboo Blinds Cheap and Easy

How to line and insulate bamboo Roman blinds:

1.  Purchase white insulating lining fabric from a sewing store.

2.  Spread out the shade, fully extended, on your work surface.

3.  You’ll see that pull cords run down the back of it, going through little rings.  Untie the pull cords from the bottom, and remove from each ring. Leave them attached at the very top, where all the fancy hardware is.

4.  Figure how much of the back of the shade you need to line.  (For example, I didn’t need to extend the lining to the very bottom, because the shade is doubled up at the bottom.

5.  Cut a piece of liner fabric to fit the shade.

6.  Grab a glue gun to adhere the fabric to the back of the shade with hot glue.

**Notes: I found that three thin vertical rows of glue worked best.  The blue arrows and numbers in the image below show how I applied the glue in three rows.   The red circles show where the rows of cord loops are.   Be sure not to apply glue too close to where the cord loops are.

DIY Privacy Lined Bamboo Blinds How To

7.  Once the liner is glued to the shade, carefully use sharp scissors to cut a very small notch in the fabric where each metal loop is.  Pull the ring through the notch.

DIY Privacy Lined Bamboo Blinds Cheap and Easy

8.  Run the cords back through the metal rings, and tie at the bottom as they were before.

9. Hang your shade, and enjoy your newfound privacy.

Tips and tricks:

  • If you have a single shade that is wider than 54″ you will need to line it in sections.  For example, if your shade is 60″ wide, you’ll want to line it with two 30″ sections just to keep things nice and even.
  • Use a coupon at the fabric store to find the fabric for less than $7 a yard.
  • If insulation, and not just privacy, is your goal – be sure to buy “insulating” liner fabric, not just privacy liner fabric.

DIY Privacy Lined Bamboo Blinds Cheap and Easy

Frequently Asked Questions

“Did you do anything to the edges of the fabric to keep it from fraying?” 

I used an insulated drapery liner fabric, and it didn’t try to fray.  Over time it still didn’t fray.  Perhaps the insulated fabric has a coating or polyester component that prevents fraying.

“I’m … wondering if the glue will still adhere when we have really hot days – when the sun is beating down on it all day. I’m just worried it’ll melt and get all gooey and gross!” 

My windows didn’t get a lot of sun, but if you’re worried about that, I would test  your window by putting some hot glue on a piece of cardboard and letting it sit in the window for a few days. You should be safe, though.  Reader Jim added, “I don’t think the hot melt glue will decompose if the sun shines on it even on a really hot day. According to Wikipedia, the standard hot melt glue gun melts the glue at somewhere between 248 °F and 374 °F.

Can I buy pre-cut fabric for the blinds?  

There are pre-made, and pre-cut privacy liners specifically for adding to existing blinds, but they cost more than if you DIY.   Check out the Designview Fabric privacy liner or Radiance Privacy Liner.

Still not sure you should try it? Here’s some feedback I’ve gotten:

“Thank you SO MUCH for this post! I recently moved into a beautiful place that came with bamboo blinds, and I wanted to keep them but had to do something about the privacy issue. They’re very narrow, so replacing them wasn’t really an option, either; at least not an option I could comfortably afford after an expensive move. I was ready to tear my hair out when I found this. It took me a few hours to add lining to the eight blinds along my front windows, but the results are exactly what I hoped for, and the total cost was less than $25. You are my hero!!”

“OMG, Jane, your instructions were flawless. What a money saver. And the finished product looks so good. I can’t thank you enough for posting this step by step how to. Truly, thank you”

how to add a privacy liner to bamboo blinds so you can get the look for less

My Charlie Cushions are Finally Launched!

Charlie Cushions are here!  

Janery Charlie Cushion Waterproof Designer Dog Bed
I’m so excited to launch these plush, waterproof pet beds.  There’s a story behind every product I create, but the story of the Charlie Cushion may be the most important of them all.

Charlie Cushions are the reason I started Janery.

In 2003 I rescued a hairless and emaciated dog and named her Charlie.  She was a Rottweiler mix with a bullet in her leg, and with a lot of love and a little training she quickly became an irreplaceable part of my family. Charlie
Charlie loved any and all soft beds, probably after years spent sleeping on the streets.  But if she ate something she shouldn’t, Charlie would have incontinence issues, leaking on her beds as she slept.  I was constantly buying and throwing out cheap dog beds.

I finally got a high end pet bed for Charlie, thinking it would last longer and be less wasteful.  I was so disappointed when Charlie had an accident on it, and the dog bed insert came out of the washer all lumpy.  When Charlie curled up on it the stuffing piled up in the corner leaving a hard spot in the middle.  Plus, the smell hadn’t come out.

For years I wondered why there were no durable dog beds that also looked fabulous.  Why weren’t all dog beds protected by a waterproof liner so their cushions weren’t ruined by an accident?

When my husband gave me a sewing machine for my birthday, I started sewing.  And a year later I decided to create and sell waterproof dog beds.  Beds that complement your decor but are durable and practical.

I had a corporate day job, but on nights and weekends I sewed for hours, honing my skills and testing different designs, but ran into roadblocks finding a quality American-made supplies.  I also got discouraged several times and took time off from the project.  During this all, I developed other pretty-but-practical products – washable throw pillows for humans, Merlin Mats and Catnip Cuddlers for pets, and more.

Now Janery is my full-time job, I’ve found the right suppliers, and my Charlie Cushions are ready to shine.  I said goodbye to my beloved Charlie on Christmas day two years ago, but my other dogs and my cat have tested the beds for her.

If you’d like to save 15% during the launch week sale, you can join the JANERY VIP club here.

The Spookiest Halloween Decorations I’ve Ever Seen in Lambertville, NJ

Our little family spent this past weekend in New Jersey, and during our trip we spotted the spookiest Halloween decorations ever at the epic Halloween house in Lambertville, NJ.

Ryan’s family lives outside of Trenton, near this funky riverside town that apparently takes Halloween quite seriously.  It’s full of coffee shops and boutiques and art galleries, and one of the older residents has created the most incredible Halloween sculptures.  She’s a retired art teacher who is clearly talented.

The display began in her yard only, but has spread to neighboring homes as her family  of decorations has grown.  We went at night, and it was incredible.  You can read more about it here, or just scroll down to see the photos!

PS: If you go to see this or other neighborhood decor attractions, please remember to be respectful of the fact that you’re in someone’s neighborhood.

Spooky Halloween Decor Lambertville NJ

Spooky Halloween Decor Lambertville NJ


Spookyiest Halloween Decorations Ever Lambertville NJ

Spooky Halloween Decor Lambertville NJ-003

Creepy Halloween Sculpture Decor Lambertville NJ-004

Tim Burton Inspired Halloween Decor House in Lambertville NJ

Famous Halloween House in Lambertville NJ

Spooky Halloween Decor Lambertville NJ-007Spooky Halloween Decor Coffin Bride Lambertville NJ


Secondhand Score: Retro Style Metal Patio Glider and Chair

The other day I dropped off a carload of donations at Goodwill. . . but it resulted in my bringing home not one, but two, carloads of furniture.

Wait a minute. . . That’s not how clearing clutter is supposed to work!

As I pulled into the donation area, I spotted a treasure trove of recently-donated vintage furniture, including a vintage metal patio set.  I hopped out of my car and asked if I could buy it.  I have always wanted vintage metal patio furniture, the kind that glides back and forth, and at first I thought it was a vintage set in great shape.Retro Metal Patio Glider Sofa Red White

Upon closer inspection I suspected it was a reproduction, but that didn’t lower my enthusiasm.  When the employee quoted a price of $39 for the set of chair and 3-seater sofa, I immediately said yes.  Vintage or knockoff, it doesn’t matter – that’s a steal of a deal for metal outdoor furniture!  And then I texted Ryan to ask him.

While I was waiting on Ryan’s response, two other people tried to buy it as they walked into the store.

Retro Metal Patio Glider Chair Red White

That night I returned to Goodwill to pick up the furniture.  A woman was outside eyeing my patio set, and she tried to buy it from me – first for $100, then for $200.  That was awkward!
When I got home, a little online research showed that it’s most likely a newer reproduction made by 4D concepts.  Their 2-seater glider is currently on clearance all over the internet for about $200.  The chair is about $100.  I’m debating buying both, so that we have a complete set around the fire.  It’s one of those things that’s not really in the budget, but it may be worth pulling from some savings in order to have a matching set and not be stuck next summer trying to hunt them down.  However, they get mixed reviews – some for difficulty of assembly, some for poor packaging, and some saying it’s not super sturdy.

The furniture is just what we needed around our fire pit in the back yard, and though there are a few small rust spots, I’m hopeful that we’ll get a few good years out of it before we have to strip and repaint it.   I’ll have to share a photo once we’ve moved it into place.

In the mean time, what do you think – should I get the 2-seater glider and chair in the matching color?  And what’s the best way to protect it from getting rusty during the winter?  Put it in the shed?  Or apply a new layer of clear coat?