Measuring For Blinds In A Splay Bay

Hello Everyone, Elsie Wolfe here.

I know I have gone through how best to measure windows before. To a certain degree there is a huge overlap with that and what I am about to guide you through in order to measure up for blinds. I hope this will help, I found when I stuck to the following it helped immensely, to avoid forgetting a measurement and in reducing the chance of mistakes. 

Enjoy.

Reading The Tape Measure.

I know, I know. The first time someone asked me when I was training, “do you know how to use and read a tape measure ?” I rolled my eyes. seriously though, so many people think they know till they watch someone who really knows how to use a tape measure, use one. 

There are lots of little tricks that I will show you in up coming blogs but this is the first with regards to recess’ , specifically for those using the lo tech tape measure and not the digital ones.

Width and drop recess. You can sit most tape measures in a rebate this way due to them have a size written on the side marking the length of the casement. take the size at the point it hits the top of the case then add the case size on. This gives you the recess without having to bend the tape measure. tape-recess2

If you are old school  and prefer to measure this way, the measurement you take is just as the tape begins to curve. In this case 64 1/4″ . This is also the same off measuring drops for curtains to a floor level. I measure in inches because some of the windows I measure are quite large so reading the cm/mm would be practically impossible with me stood in the middle of the tape measure.

Recess Sizes

How to measure a rebate is largely effected by the type of window we are dealing with. In this blog I am only going to focus on the following type of window when measuring for blinds.

Bay Window

Lets put the varying types glazing to one side, and focus on how we attack measuring for blinds in a bay once we have decided where we are fixing said blinds to begin with.

As a rule I tend to advise against using traditional style Roller blinds in bays. I have yet to see them fit neatly, function properly and not have huge gaps caused by brackets and side controls. 

With this in mind lets look at how blinds fit into a splay bay windows.

sheila-garside

http://www.curtain-up.ltd.uk/

  1. Measure the recess (corner to corner as well as top and bottom).
  2. Measure each angle. Top and bottom of the recess (just in case of variances).
  3. Measure from the top of where the blind will sit to where you want it to finish. In this case the sill. Measure at several points around the bay ( I recommend 2 for each blind).

As previously advised, please use simple line drawings and fill in the sizes. This is so much better than a list of measurements. There is also less chance on getting them wrong or mixed up. I find plan drawing helps for width sizes and a separate elevation drawing for drops is also useful.  

Now you need to work out the size of the blinds that will be made.

This will be different because the projection of the blind reduces its width because of the angles.

Step By Step Guide to Sizeing Blinds in a Bay Window

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Draw in the angle of the bay, then using the real sizes (Not scale), draw in the front edge position of the blind. This needs to be the rail + the thickness of the blind. (I normally allow about 1/4″ blind thickness.) In the example I have drawn it is 4cm just for the purposes of this exercise.

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Draw in the front edge of where the back and side blind intersect.

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Measure in aprox 1/8″ from the intersection on both sides.

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Draw right angle lines back from this point to the wall.

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The above has to be done for every angle where two blinds meet. 

Take measurement and – measurement from both sides of the middle blind. 

This will give you size = the blind size.

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The side blinds sit just up to the corners on the outer edge. Measure forward at a right angle then go past edge of rail aprox 1/2″. Due to the projection of the blinds and the bay there will be gapping at the side . The 1/2″ reduces this gapping. You can also have external dress curtains to hide the gaps.

fti1

http://www.finishingtouchesinteriors.co.uk/

Side blind is as follows. – + 1/2″ = F. Be aware that the rail size excludes the 1/”.

If you want a snug fit on this outside edge a batten system using an adaptor for safety from Evans means you can shape into the angle.

This then changes the workings on the side blind to ………….

D – E + distance from edge of blind to wall – 1/8″ =  blind size.

Keep in mind that the back of the batten will be a different size to the front (blind size).

The 1/4″ and 1/8″ allowances are to stop / reduce the blinds from rubbing as well as helping them to fold up properly and so the gaps are not too big.

Always size the blinds using the shortest and narrowest sizes obtained.

Use the shortest drop for the blind drop but do not take anything off that size. The blind will naturally spring up slightly.

 

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Finished blind positions.

fti3

http://www.finishingtouchesinteriors.co.uk/

 

victoria-hill

http://victoriahillbespokesoftfurnishings.co.uk/

Some bay windows have frames or mullions that allow the blinds to sit within a rebate and not interfere with each other. These are just worked out using the recess sizes of each separate area. A 1/4″ off the width size needs to be deducted so the blind does not rub. It can be a real feature having the frame, framing the blinds.

Kelly White @ www.facebook.com/whitewolfeint

Swaffer fabric and Evans rails were used in the above design.

I hope you have found this post helpful / informative. I plan to write additional posts about blinds in other types of windows so keep your eyes peeled ?

Thank you for reading.

Elsie Wolfe

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Bay behind an Arch

Hi all, Elsie here.

                                  So a bit back I touched on bay windows but this time I would like to dive a bit further into this lovely little architectural oddity that you don’t see very often. Looks good I know but it can cause some difficulties when you want to dress it.

The Bay Window sat behind an arch.

                                Some people get quite excited when they sees these lovely windows. They often come with additional plaster detail, sometimes sash windows and occasionally stained glass.  On first inspection they appear lovely but then we have to get practical. Warmth, privacy, functionality and oh you don’t want to hide any of the bits you like about the window.

More often than not one or more compromises have to be made for a dressing to work in these beauties for one reason or another. I have never seen two the same, each one is individual and has its own little quirks so each one has to be attacked differently. However I can go through some of the common issues that may arise to help you along the way.

clearview-secondary-glazing-bay-window

This shows clearly a couple of issues that this style of window come with.

  • Sill extending further than bay recess.
  • Window frame up to back edge of arch.
  • Deep sill.
  • Picture rail within recess.
  • Arched fascia wall onto ceiling.

 

First lets tackle the sill shall we ?

The sill (especially in the image above) coupled with the arched section of wall onto ceiling makes it infeasible to have a full length curtain within the bay.  This is not always the case, in some situations there is a very narrow sill or none at all.                                                             A face fixed pelmet enables under-slung tracking so that pinch pleats can be used to stack as far back as possible. This however may not be preferable if a pelmet ends up covering stained glass that you want to remain on view (depth permitting).

If a pelmet is undesirable then a plastic tracking system can be used (Sologlyde) I find is the best (my preferred option).

Solo-glyde

The downside is only pencil pleat can really be used with this rail, giving a more “casual” look and bulky when open. This heading will encroach further onto the glass at the sides than pinch. Sologlyde is best I feel for pencil due to the style of hook. This hook keeps the heading as neat as can be and stops it tipping forward due to it being on the fascia of the rail and not under-slung.

In this type of bay pelmet returns may also be tricky depending on window frame positioning etc. The most narrow style of pelmet is a “Lath” where the pinch is on view under the pelmet  and is traditionally put onto a Silvo metal rail. Pre bent made to measure rails can also be used but are a more costly option over Silvo. Silent Gliss and Evans are great companies to look at for made to measure rails.

silvo-curtain-rail-b

Silvo rail

Pelmets can help you clear protruding window frames.

It is also possible to attach tracking systems to some window frames (style depending).

All things like picture rails and cove can effect positioning of any fittings so therefore must be taken into account.

“Gapping” can occur with curtains and blinds. Curtains can sometimes be hooked onto the wall on a return (depending on space) but this is not the case with blinds. If there is not a return wall to block it, there will be gaps on the outside edges of the extreme right and left blinds. This is due to the projection of the blind rails coupled with the acute angel of the arch coming across. This may cause you to be able to see out the window even when blind is down.

You can combat “gapping” or at least reduce it by having dress or functional curtains across the front of the arch. These can be on poles, rails, under pelmets depending on space allowance and / or individual preference.

It may be that dressing the front (across the arch) and staying out of the recess completely is a preferred course of action. Poles are sometimes possible, Silent Gliss Metroploes are great in limited space and can allow for wave as well as Pinch pleat headings. You can also shape a pelmet to follow the arch, therefore retaining the shape even when the curtains are closed. This can make a lovely feature. You do lose the bay when the curtains are closed however.

bay-window-curtain-rails

There are even possibilities for a curtain treatment to close across the bay but to sit directly behind the arch, which looks wonderful if there is an architectural feature on the arch itself.

There are so many variations on this style window. They must all be approached from a technical aspect first due to their many varying complexities. Only then can a designer begin to dress them in stylish and sympathetic way.

 

I hope this has been a helpful guide to starting you on your way to dressing what is a lovely architectural feature. I would recommend that if you have one of these windows that you seek guidance that is specific to your window. You can go to http://www.facebook.com/whitewolfeint for help or message me here?

As time goes by I may add more examples of this wonderful window dressed. Keep your eyes peeled ?

Thank you for reading .

Kind Regards

Elsie Wolfe