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I was searching everywhere for short (15 inch) curtain rods to use on either side of a large window (instead of having a large rod that would remain bare in the middle). I had seen them in model homes and on TV decorating shows, but they just don't seem to exist! I went to my local home improvement store, took a 1 1/4 inch dowel, cut it down myself (at the store) into my 2 rods (plus, I got a great rolling pin from the remainder piece!). I then ventured off to JC Penney to look for finials, as there were no brushed silver ones at the home store. I found 2 packages of 2 on clearance for 5.24 each package, marked down from 28.00 each, and also purchased some brackets to fit the dowels. Make sure the brackets stick out into the room enough to accommodate the finial, mine are large and chunky.
Once home, I drilled holes for the finials and installed everything. My cost for the 2 poles was about $16.00 including the brackets. Custom made ones at my local home decorating store start at 50.00 each!
Source: My own invention!
By Ginny from South Carolina
I have gotten so many compliments on my cheap copper pipe curtain rods and curtains so I wanted to pass this idea on. One of our windows in our home is over 7 feet long. We could not afford a curtain rod or curtains, so I chose a copper pipe (about $3.35) cut to length with gold brackets, two nicely finished table cloths ($7.99) as curtains (on sale of course) hung by metal circles with clips ($13.99) which can be purchased at any of the "mart" stores and small floral arrangements ($1.00 rummage sale finds) taped into the pipe's ends as the finials.
I also used this same idea with our sliding glass door but found an old, lovely cloth shower curtain. This is a different, outstanding, and unique look that can be made to fit any decor. Enjoy! I never thought this cheap could look this good.
Editor's Note: These prices are from 2004, when the tip was originally posted. The price of copper has steadily increased in the intervening years and would be more expensive today.
Using electrical conduit to hang your curtains is super inexpensive and it has that industrial look. It can be purchased at your home improvement store in 10 foot lengths for a little more than a dollar for the entire piece. You can easily cut to fit with a simple pipe cutter or hacksaw. Remember to file down ends. Then use larger screw eyes or hooks mounted into the wall or window frame to slide the conduit through. Lastly, I purchase inexpensive rubber furniture feet for outdoor patio furniture; these I put on the ends of conduit to prevent it from sliding out of the wall hooks. :)
I used the round tube from a fabric bolt for a curtain rod once and it worked wonderfully! I had some contact paper in the wood-look pattern and covered the tube with it and on the ends I poofed up some fabric and covered the ends with it and rubberbands. Being it was a smaller sized window I used one curtain panel and pulled it to one side. It turned out terrific. And best of all, it cost nothing since I had it all on hand.
You can get the cardboard tubes from any fabric store since they throw them away anyway and most are glad to give them to you.
I needed spring rods for my sheers at several windows, but they were more expensive than I could afford. When we go to home fairs or safety fairs, we often get yardsticks.
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I has an extra wide sliding glass door for which I'm wanting to make a curtain rod to hang sheers or light weight grommet type curtains. I don't want a traverse rod. The width of the window is 144 inches plus 8 inches (4 on each side). The curtains will be drawn from the middle; therefore I will only be able to use supports on each end and one in the middle.
By weinerdog41 from Ft. Worth, TX
You can make it with PVC for looks, then put a smaller wooden dowel inside. You just have to make sure they aren't exactly the same width and you are good to go.
Rebar...cheap, won't bend and as long as you like.
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I have a bayside window and instead of paying too much for custom curtain rods, I made my own, using 1/2 inch flexible black plastic tubing, 1/2 inch electrical wire clips. When I finished hanging that up, I cut off the ends and added a black drawer knob that fit into the tube ends.
The result: a custom curtain rod that cost under $7.00!
It also looks pretty sharp!
By Emmy from Elsmere, KY
Have Mercy. I have a bay window in my kitchen and a "Friend" quoted me at least $100.00 to make me one. I have been waiting for "It" to come to me. Thank you so much for the idea.
I kinda have the Rustic Tropical theme up right now. I like it but it is time for the change. I simply took dowel rod and hung them by hooks and tied them off with Raffia, and of course I painted them and put the big ole wood beads on the ends. I found some of the Bamboo beach mats and I redid the edges with a Hot glue gun and Raffia. Turned out pretty good. Maybe cost $5.00. (Saved me $95.00) Can't beat it.
Where do you get the 1/2 inch flexible black tubing and what is it commonly used for? (05/02/2008)
The tubing is used for irrigation systems. I found it at walmart in the lawn and garden section, next to all of the hoses. It's about 6 dollars for fifty feet. I only used about five feet of it though. (05/02/2008)
I used wood trim strips for my curved windows. I couldn't find any rods that were long enough or curved enough. The trim is available at any Lowe's or Home Depot and come in lengths up to about 14 ft and are inexpensive. I got a long piece and it curves over three windows for one nice long expanse instead of a bunch of small rods close together or an expensive custom rod. (05/02/2008)