Making a Window Valance: Ideas for Valances, Curtains and Draperies

Improve the Look of Your Home by Installing Valances for Windows

Purple valance

Valances are a great way to hide the hardware for your window shades and curtains. There are several ways to create a window valance and if you are having a difficult time with drapery ideas, check fabrics at furniture stores.

The following steps are for wall-mounted valance curtains that fit outside a window at the trim. You can also adjust the steps for an inside mounted window style by changing the measurements. Drapery styles vary, but they all achieve the same goal of covering window hardware.

Follow these directions to learn how to make valances:

Step 1

Materials required.

  • Valance board (thick cardboard or thin plywood)
  • Scissors or saw
  • Staple gun with staples
  • Fabric
  • Mounting Screws
  • Drill

Step 2

Measure window. This type of valance will be secured into the wall around and above the window frame so you need to measure the size of the window opening then add three inches on each side. You can make a larger valance if you wish but three inches on each side is enough. Valances for windows can be easily adjusted.

Step 3

Cut the valance board. You can use heavy cardboard or thin plywood for your valance board, whichever you prefer. Cut the board to the length measurement above. For the height of the valance, a good rule of thumb is that the valance should be ¼ of the total height of the window. So measure the window height then divide by four for the measurement of the valance height.

Step 4

Cut the fabric. Drapery designs are the fun part as you have numerous choices of fabric from which to choose. The fabric should be long enough to wrap once around the valance board from bottom to top and then have about one inch extra on each side.

Step 5

Drill or screw holes on each of the four corners of the valance board. The fabric should cover the screws once attached to the wall so prepare the holes ahead of time.

Step 6

Stretch fabric across the valance board. Use staples to secure the fabric to the bottom of the backside of the board. You will secure the top once the valance is in place. After you staple the bottom side of the fabric, stretch it across so that you can locate the holes you made for the screws. Cut square notches of fabric out on the top backside so that you can loop the fabric over the screws once the board is secure. Your notches will not be visible on the front of the fabric. Valance window treatments should hide hardware.

Step 7

With the fabric loose, secure the valance to the wall. Remember that the bottom of the fabric has been secured. Attach the screws so that the valance is secured about 1/8 inch from the wall. The valance should be positioned so it is centered on the window and above the window top frame by about two inches.

Step 8

Wrap the top of the fabric over the valance board. You may have to pull the fabric tightly remove any wrinkles. Slide the fabric between the board and the wall in the 1/8-inch space. Then from the window side, under the valance, staple the loose fabric to the back of the valance board where it cannot be seen. Fold the sides in and staple them as well.

You have created a window valance with just a few steps and simple tools you have at home! Feel free to get creative with the fabrics and/or mount the valance using different drapery hardware if you prefer. Once you have completed your first valance, then creating and mounting additional window valances will be smooth sailing, especially if your windows are the same size.


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