Saturday, July 31, 2010

It's Curtains For You!

Okay, this post is going to be a little bit different....its all about curtains, drapes, window treatments what have you....


In a desperate attempt to get our daughter to sleep past 5:30am we surmised that maybe its the morning sunlight streaming into her room that is waking her up? Her room used to be a sun porch ya know. What if we could get 'blackout' curtains for her room? If it was dark would she stay asleep?

Off I head to our local Bed Bath& Beyond store.....now, I've never really ever in my life thought about curtains and it turns out I had A LOT to learn....luckily a kindly store employee took pity on me and helped me figure things out. Did you know that a curtain needs to be at least twice as wide as the window?



One thing I gotta say......'Holy Friggen Mackerel Curtains Are Expensive!!!' I guess that's why the standard window treatment in the ghetto is the ole 'tumb tacked bed sheet to the window trim'.


After what seemed like 30hrs staring at the clearance section this is what I came home with. Curtains for Tasha's room and for our room. The box of candy wasn't on sale but it was necessary none the less...as was the large mocha I was sipping in the store...without that caffeine I think I woulda strangled somebody...



This was an interesting find I thought. Curtain rods that are hinged to swing away from the window. I thought it would be the perfect thing to replace the curtain that we are using as the door to the nursery.



Here's the curtain that we're replacing.



And the new double layer curtain-door thingy.



Here's a shot of the 'door' open. One side blocks the light from the window on the door and that's not ideal...But we like how the other side blocks the view of all the ugly crap on the open shelf.



Here's what the old doorway looked like on a bright sunny day.



Here's what it looks like now! Success I'd say...



Here's what the original curtains looked like.




Here are the blackout curtains I bought to replace them. I should have another panel here as these are kinda stretched thin.



Here's a shot of the curtain rod I installed and the curtains open to prove what a lovely day it was.



Here's a shot with the curtains closed. The room really is, a lot darker now. But will it be darker enough?



Here's a shot of the original curtains in our bedroom. This is in the later afternoon so there's direct sunlight shinning through them. I didn't buy fancy curtain rods for in here...we're going to try to make due with just the tension rods.



Here's what it looks like with a double layer of 'light reducing' curtains....Its markedly better for sure but there is still a lot of light streaming in around the edges.






Wow, I spent almost an entire Saturday dealing with curtains!...

Will it work? Will the rooms be dark enough to keep the baby asleep for longer?

Update:
It appears to of worked!! The baby woke up at 5:30am and put herself back to sleep until the friggen cat woke her up. Irene scooped her up and brought her back to bed and fed her. Our newly darkened room appears to be dark enough as the baby went back to sleep and slept until....8:30am!!! Wooooooo-Hooooooooooooooo!!! Could this be the answer? Have we missed out on countless hours of sleep for the lack of correct window treatments?

Update to the Update:
Dang, Monday morning and the baby was up for good at 6:30am......maybe yesterday we just got lucky? I guess time will tell...

12 comments:

Kitt said...

Oy. Curtains are an ordeal I dread undertaking! I hope your efforts continue to pay off.

I need to get something on our hallway window. I have this sneaking suspicion that the neighbor has set up a video camera. Probably not, but he could.

Mom said...

Nice going. Hope it works for you.

The MadScientist said...

Kitt, you sound a little paranoid.....

The MadScientist said...

Mom,
We hope they work out for us also.
Its been ages, when are y'all coming for a visit???

Jessamyn said...

I'm not sure why you need a double layer on the door? I use a swing rod on a doorway, but just the one.

Handy tip: blackouts are great, but pricey, and forget "light reducing" stuff. All that really means is tightly woven material.

I bought strongly light-reducing rod-pocket curtains for our bedroom at Lowe's or Home Depot (don't remember which) quite inexpensively, because they weren't advertised as such. I just went through the samples, holding them up to the light, until I found ones I liked that blocked a lot of light. Usually something like velvet is a good bet - lots of fiber between you and the light - dark colors work better than light ones - and, sadly, poly is more likely to work than a natural material (because the fibers are so fine, they can be packed more closely together).

I'm a costumer, so fabric is my thing!

Heather said...

Another idea is to buy blackout curtain liners from a fabric store. They're about $7/yard, and I just clipped mine behind my curtains--works great!

Mom said...

I know it's been ages. Can't wait to see all 3 of you. Would like to come up either this weekend or next weekend. The following weekend I have something all day Saturday and the weekend after that is just before my August 30 surgery. Would need to wait for a while after that but don't know how long.

The MadScientist said...

Jess,
Two curtians over the doorway cause I'm a belt and suspenders type. The doorway, which faces east, is where the bulk of the morning sun comes in.
I have to admit that I wasn't really paying attention to the types of fabric. I didn't even know that lowes or Home Despot even sold curtians!

The MadScientist said...

Heather,
Huh didn't know that you could just buy blackout cloth like that...see how much I don't know about curtains? Maybe we'll do that for the bedroom curtains if we decide that they are not dark enough...

Kitt said...

I *sound* paranoid? Have you tapped my phone????

Anonymous said...

I'm assuming fromthe general tenor or the blog that you are from the generation that didn't have mandatory home ec classes with sewing. Seriously, sewing curtains is one of the easiest things to do. If you are cool at cutting drywall or lumber it's similar work.) And judging by the number of windows any Vic has, you will save boatload of $$$ doing your own. Also, Vics have idiosyncratic, weird long sized windows, so many off the shelf items won't fit anyway.

1. Buy a basic Babylock machine (from the place on Piedmont in oakland). Nice lady who owns the shop also holds classes. (Don't buy a Singer or anythng from walmart/kmart/target - you won't get any support.)

2. Get copy of the SINGER SEWING LIBRARY curtain books and it will show you the formulas for yardage. Its all straight seams and I hate to see anyone spend bucks on something you have to settle for when you can make it right to fit your self.
cheers, Bette

The MadScientist said...

Hello Bette,
I actually took a cooking class in 8th grade but not the sewing class....

You make good points and when we get around to making the 'final' 'nice' curtains we probably should make them ourselves....

The ones we have now (all bought on clearance) are just a temp solution.