Home / How-to guide / How To Apply Roller Blind Backing

How To Apply Roller Blind Backing

Roller blind backing material

How to make a roller blind with iron-on roller blind backing

Make a roller blind from fabric using our iron-on backing and you can use (almost) any fabric you want for your blinds! Read on to learn how to choose a fabric for a DIY roller blind, how to measure and position your blind fabric for best results, and how to apply iron-on roller blind stiffening material to your chosen show fabric to make a custom roller blind.

When choosing show fabric to make your own roller blind, look at fabrics suitable for curtains; these are heavier than dressmaking fabrics, but lighter and easier to work with than upholstery fabrics, although some of these will also work. As you need to iron the backing on, check the manufacturer’s care instructions before ironing, or test a piece of the fabric with a medium-hot iron.

If you’re making a small roller blind, it’s worth checking our remnants for blind-sized bargains! You can use the Find My Fabric search tool to guide you, or click on the quick links below:

We sell roller blind stiffening backing material by the metre, so that you can achieve a professional-looking finish at home with the fabric of your choice by following these simple steps. Pre-stiffened fabrics are available, but this really limits your choice. You could opt for a spray-on stiffener, but these can be messy, don’t work with some fabrics, and tricky to get right. The best solution we’ve found in our workroom is an iron-on roller blind stiffener. Using this backing you can use most fabrics as roller blind fabric, so long as it can take a hot iron and is not too thick to roll up once it is backed with roller blind stiffener. Here’s our top tips to get it right!

If you need help measuring, our guide on how to measure for a Roman blind also applies to roller blinds, and will explain how to measure accurately for a blind that fits inside or outside a window recess.

What you’ll need:

  • Show Fabric (the fabric for the front of your blind)
  • Roller blind backing fabric – buy it here
  • Steam iron
  • Large clean surface to iron on. You may like to protect the surface with a folded duvet cover or towel)
  • Tailor’s chalk (you can use a pen/pencil instead)
  • Tape measure
  • Set square (or something to ensure corners are right angles)
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1

Calculate the measurements

Both the the show fabric and the backing are worked out the same. The width should be a minimum of 2cm (1″) wider than the finished size of your blind.

Add 30cm (12″) to the finished length, to allow for turning at the bottom and top. More overhang is fine, you can trim later.

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2

Measuring and marking

Place your roller blind backing right side down (smooth side). Measure out the size of your blind (width +2cm, length+30cm). Mark out on the wrong side (shiny side). Use the set square to check the right angles so that your blind won’t look wonky! Once you are happy with the marking out, cut out the backing.

check your show fabric

3

Take a look at your fabric

First press your show fabric, then position the fabric and find the top. For plain fabric, skip to step 5. For a patterned fabric, look at the design, and decide where to centre the design on the blind

A patterned fabric may need extra material for pattern placement, or for pattern matching for multiple blinds.

measure out the show fabric

4

Decide on pattern placement

Pattern placement is important for a professional finish. If you have a large print, choose to centre a prominent feature. Check where your pattern will sit on the blind, remembering to allow for turnings – usually 20cm at the top and 10cm at the bottom, but check your cassette instructions. Mark where you would like your blind to sit with a few pins.

5

Position the backing on the fabric

Now you’re ready to apply the roller blind backing. Put your show fabric right side down and position the piece of backing, you cut earlier, onto the fabric lining it up with the pins. You can now mark around it with chalk and remove the pins once you are happy it is positioned correctly. If your fabric is plain, then position the backing directly onto the show fabric in the same way, and mark with chalk.

6

Preparing for ironing

Set up your ironing surface. If you are using your kitchen table, protect the surface with a large towel or blanket, make sure it is smooth and flat. Check that your show fabric is right side down, and the roller blind backing is on top and right side up. The slightly bumpy adhesive side of the backing should be against the back of the fabric.
Set your iron to medium – high temperature.

2

Apply the roller blind backing

Apply the iron on blind backing by ironing with a firm pressure. Work from the centre of the blind stiffening fabric, working outwards in circles of increasing size; continue this process all the way out to the edges of the roller blind backing.

You will need to press and hold the iron down firmly and apply steam. Be careful not to move too quickly – it will cause wrinkles. To ensure that all of the backing has stuck down properly, look at the fabric from a low angle in good light; this will show up any bubbles that may still be there. If this is the case then use the iron to push these bubbles out to the edge of the fabric so that the air can be released. Check around the edges and ensue that they are firmly sealed together; you’ll find that having the extra 1cm either side helps to ensure a good seal right to the very edge.

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4

Cut to size

Cut down the bonded show fabric and roller blind backing to the desired size of your finished blind. Trim off 1cm each side (this is the 2cm you added earlier) leaving the extra 30cm (12″) you allowed on the length. This will be used to turn the bottom, and for attaching the bind to the cassette. .

finished roller blind, DIY roller blind

4

Your blind is complete!

Follow the instructions for your cassette to attach the blind, and then roll the fabric onto the roller.

Your blind is now ready to fit to the window.

You can buy our iron-on roller blind backing by the metre here:

CategoriesHow-to guide

10 Comments

  1. Fiona Bashford

    Does using the backing material mean there is no need to hem the edges of the blind?

    Reply
    • ltextiles

      Hi there Fiona, that’s right! the iron-on backing seals the edge of the fabric, so there’s no need to hem, which means the blind can roll up more tightly and evenly.

      Reply
  2. Jennie Taylor

    I need to join curtain fabric because my blind is 2m 35cm wide I have re made blinds for this window before but used 54″ wide fabric width ways. This time I have bought a vertical design fabric so I will need to join pieces together. Will this blind backing be suitable?

    Reply
    • ltextiles

      Hi, you would be able to use the roller blind backing but we are not sure how you are joining the pieces together. If you have a seam we would recommend sticking the hem down with hemming web before applying the backing, but the seam would still be bulky which might affect the performance of the blind. If you are not having a seam just putting the cut edges of the fabric together the backing will stabilise it to some extent but you may still need to apply a product like FrayCheck to the cut edges to reduce fraying. We have not made a blind with joined fabric, so please do let us know how you get on with it.

      Reply
  3. Christine Marson

    Hi
    I assume when using this product one side of the blind will be plain
    Thank you

    Reply
    • ltextiles

      Hi yes it would be. If you want a blind patterned on both sides you would need to join 2 fabrics together with something like fuse-a-web.

      Reply
      • Christine Marson

        Thank you would I do this before using the backing
        Thanks

        Reply
        • ltextiles

          Hi Christine, If you use roller blind backing, you’ll have a plain backing because the backing is unpatterned. If you’d like a patterned backing, a better choice might be a roman blind, or for an easier make, a Swedish blind, if this would work with your decor.

          Reply
  4. Sally

    Hi. I was just wondering how long this would last on a blind. I am hoping it doesn’t start peeling off after a few months/years.
    Thank you

    Reply
    • ltextiles

      Hi Sally, we haven’t had any reports of it beginning to detach. Once the glue is melted it is a secure bond to the blind fabric. In the unlikely event there was any peeling you could take the blind down and apply a hot iron to any problem spots (avoiding the mechanism)

      Reply

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