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

Pelmet Precision

Pelmet Precision 

Hello everyone, 

                                well it has been a while, sorry to have neglected you but I have had my hands full with my new business. Also due to the restrictions on image sharing it has been increasingly more difficult to get examples of the type of work I rattle on about. So without further ado, a post about pelmets!!

Enjoy.

Elsie Wolfe

 

Pelmets

O.K. lets just clarify what I mean when I say PELMET. 

Pelmets are hard flat box dressings that go across the top of blinds, curtains and even beds. They are usually made out of essex, ply or bucrum. (I personally would not recommend bucrum as it has a tendency to warp, especially on bigger items, also they tend not to have a sharp return to the wall ) . They can be shaped or flat. Interlined or padded using foam.

Traditionally they were attached to pelmet boards using tape stitched to the top back edge of the pelmet then tacked to the board (occasionally they still are). These days strong Velcro is used and additionally a panel pin is put in at the side to stop the returns popping out. The fabric can be lifted over the tack to disguise as best as possible. Thinner fabrics are obviously harder to hide the tack with. Tacks can sometimes be hidden with a trim such as a braid.

When measuring and designing a pelmet there are crucial things to take into consideration.

  • How much space have you got to play with above the window / door.
  • Does the door / window open in or out.
  • Is there coving, beams and / or a picture rail, how big and where are they positioned.
  • What is going under the pelmet.
  • The pattern on the fabric.

 

I will answer the above in order to clarify exactly how these points effect the style and design of the pelmet. 

How much space have you got to play with above the window / door.

This is an obvious one. You need this to help with the depth of the pelmet and also how the item will be fitted to the wall or even the ceiling when there is no “dead light” (name for wall above the window or door). This helps you to decide what brackets to use and where to position them or if you have to drill into the ceiling. Sometimes beams are in the way, a skilled designer / manufacturer can sometimes create pelmets to cut out and fit round beams, more than one measure is required at times for this so that templates can be created for accuracy.

DSCF2930

 

clews-bedroom

 White Wolfe Interiors . www.facebook.com/whitewolfeint

 

Does the door / window open in or out.

Again a really obvious one but one that can be easily looked over. If the window or door opens in, the pelmet has to be positioned so as not to hinder it opening.

ER

http://www.englishrooms.co.uk/

door

White Wolfe Interiors. www.facebook.com/whitewolfeint

Is there coving, beams and / or a picture rail, how big and where are they positioned.

In some cases there is coving you have to either shape round or cut out in order to position a pelmet where you want or need it. The same goes for picture rails. Exacting sizes need to be taken as well as templates of what to are shaping round. Also being very careful when fitting into a gap /dorma space.

 

 finishing-touches-interiors-based-in-selby-4

Finishing touches interiors. http://www.finishingtouchesinteriors.co.uk/ 

What is going under the pelmet.

This piece of information effects the depth as well as the projection. The height of the pelmet as well as what is under it is integral to the balance and proportion the the finished article. Scale drawings may be needed to play around with this to get it just right. Work on fifths and thirds, then adjust accordingly. It is not an exact science, it is what looks right in the end. The projection is controlled by the size of item under the pelmet and the rail being used. E.g = curtain heading projection, stack of blind or is it just a pelmet dressing on its own in which case very little projection is needed to stop it looking like there is something missing.

edward-grace-interior-design

Edward Grace Interior Design
www.interiordesigneressex.co.uk

kitchendining

White Wolfe Interiors

Finishing touches interiors. http://www.finishingtouchesinteriors.co.uk/

The pattern on the fabric.

I have mentioned this briefly in the “Pattern Perfect” blog. Centralising a pattern can dictate and the depth of a pelmet, you can also shape around a pattern, or even turn the fabric on the side and run it across the pelmet. Can you use the fabric in a way so as to avoid seams on the fascia (a preferable look)? Centralising a pattern always enhances the look of the finished design.

One thing I strongly recommend is when putting a pelmet inside a bay window, please get it professionally measured and made. They can be very tricky and require more than one fitting in most cases. Boards first then a check measure, make the final item and fit.

 

standard-roman-with-pelmet-closer

Designed by K.White (White Wolfe Interiors)

When putting pelmets into dorma’s / recess of windows, I generally recommend having no returns on them. This is primarily due to the return stopping the item underneath fitting as close to the wall as possible. The extra bulk of a return increases the gap from item to wall (not ideal in my mind).

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http://www.englishrooms.co.uk/

Shaping On A Pelmet

Shaping is to be carefully considered and I would recommend scale drawing before hand just to make sure it fits with the pattern, size of the window,  and is in keeping with the item underneath. You can do all sorts with pelmets beyond shaping. You can add trims, layers as well as additional padding (wadding) to add to the luxury of an item.

 

Items 1,2 & 4 = Fox Ridge Interiors@Foxridgeinteriors

Item 3 = Finishing touches interiors. http://www.finishingtouchesinteriors.co.uk/

Into The Window

Be very aware ( especially when shaping) that the wall is still covered, particularly in the situation of curtains being used. Ideally you do not want wall showing. Unless there is a restriction I recommend a minimum of 3″ going into the window / past the reveal. It is also worth mentioning that depending on how tall you are or where you are stood in the room effects how far the pelmet can go past the reveal to cover the wall and underside of the inside of the window. I recommend holding a tape measure up, standing back and seeing where you are happiest the pelmet ending.

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Curved (bow ) pelmets are particularly difficult to measure and construct. Different manufacturers work differently. Some score the back of the board so the ply bends and some use flexible ply.  You must be very aware that the more curved the bay the more the fabric can ripple. Some people construct on site and some don’t or only do partial construction. But all bays and bows need more than one fitting / measure.

Designed by K.White @ White Wolfe Int

It is amazing how a pelmet is constructed. Once you understand that it is a highly skilled craft to design and create a pelmet you then appreciate the cost involved.                            The manufacturer is actually upholstering a shaped construction, many accurate measurements are applied, the craftsmanship of a wonderful pelmet is simply sublime.

Multiple window sizes and shapes must also be taken into consideration at the design phase. Balance and unity of the design must at all times be considered, with the consideration of the overall look of the room at the heart of the design. In the design below the bottom of the contrast on the curtain is designed to be in line with the base of the pelmet on the other window, also the pattern on the blind is level with the pattern on the curtain

IMG_1249.JPG Designed by K.White @ White Wolfe Int www.facebook.com/whitewolfeint

http://www.englishrooms.co.uk/

I do hope you have enjoyed this post and want to thank all the designers who have contributed their beautiful work.

Kind Regards and please look out for my next post.

E.Wolfe