We recycle so much of what is in our homes yet many people are mystified when it comes to what to do with their old drapes or blinds and the pieces end up in the landfill. First of all, maybe they aren’t really  ready for the big bin yet.

Many blind distributors are trained on repair of their product so you may be able to have  broken cords or missing slats repaired locally.  Consider having blinds re-cut to fit a smaller window. If your verticals are vinyl consider painting them  with Crylon paint- add a new fabric valance and side panels for more pizazz.

When removing blinds make sure you keep all the hardware. Put it in a small bag and attach it to the blinds.  If you want to really be helpful, take a picture of the hardware as it sits on the wall and include that. 

 The Churches thrift store will take blinds and drapes.  Call the Women’s Shelter and the Salvation Army. You could put an ad in the paper and give them away.  If you want to sell them, be realistic about the price – usually  about $5.00  to $10.00 per hundred of original price.

Drapes and curtains (drapes are lined, curtains are not) are prime candidates for in-home recycling. I recently took down some living room drapes and re- cut and re-pleated them for use in 3 basement bedrooms.   The fabric was in  good condition and we didn’t even have to put in new lining (good quality lining to start with.) We saved hundreds of dollars by doing this. The fabric would also have been quite suitable for a slipcover, or duvet cover, or big floor cushions. 

Perhaps you like the drapes but just want an ‘update’.  Think about attaching a trim or band of color  to the leading edge, perhaps re-styling the drapes will do the trick. If you have recently installed blinds and don’t need the full drape coverage re-cutting the drapes to side panels and a valance is a good idea. 

Consider trading with a neighbor or  having  Roman Blinds constructed for another room.

It could be that your drapes are fine but you require more light control  and heat loss protection.  Lining can be added – to the existing drapes or as a separate curtain- that will provide just the coverage you need. 

With  the amazing assortment of fabric  available now it is almost always possible to  find a  complimentary fabric and use the old and new to re-do a spare room. Don’t forget the impact of good trims and the special look created by mixing patterns. I have 150 fabric books to work from and the gals at the local fabric stores are really helpful when co-ordinating patterns. Have fun..

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