Window Quilts -- ideas? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I recently heard about window quilts and I am trying to figure out the best way to make them. Do you need to make it like a shade? Or can you make it more like a curtain? I've made curtains and quilts before but never combined the too! :) Is cotton batting good or should I use wool?

Thanks for any suggestions!


-- Rebecca Lovelace (, November 11, 2001


The best way to make them would be like a shade. The would roll up during the sunshiney part of the day, and roll down at night (or when needed). Personally, as I raise sheep and use their wool, I would use wool. I believe it is warmer and thinner....

I have never seen window quilts like a curtain...but never say never!!! Good luck and have a great one!!!

-- Jackie in Northern New York (, November 11, 2001.

Rebecca: Here is the addy to another site that has good directions as well as illustrations of how the woman made window quilts. I think as long as you use something thin, and completely block out the air flow, you could make them however you wanted. Check it out here, then go to the section on "Homesteading". One of the sub-headings is "window quilts". Good luck, Jan

-- Jan in CO (, November 11, 2001.

I made the quilts for my office windows simply by cutting down worn bed quilts to size , sealing the cut edges and putting on hanger loops and weight at the bottoms. Hang them by two hooks at the top of the window when needed.

-- Jay Blair in N. AL (, November 11, 2001.

I make them this way:

Cut your top and bottom fabric and the batting the size of the window plus some extra around the edges so that you block out the air coming in from around the window frames plus 5/8" for seams. Lay out your top fabric right side up. Put on the batting. Put on the bottom fabric right side down. I use quilting pins to pin the whole thing together then stitch around the entire piece, leaving a section to turn it all right side out. In other words you are doing this how you would if you were making a pillow.

For quilting, I just use matching yarn and tie the quilt every 5" or so - like you do for a tie quilt (but you could quilt as usual). Sew up by hand the opening you left for turning, give it a very light pressing and the hard part is done.

Ok, now for the hanging of the quilt. I attach a thin board to the top with the staple gun. The thin strip a bit thicker than the kind of wood you find in the bottom of shades. It buy it a Home Depot and it costs less than a dollar. Attach 2 eye hooks to the top of the wood for hanging.

You could just hang it as is, but I do mine in a roman shade type so that it can be rolled up when it is nice outside or sunny. That way we aren't in the dark all day and night! It is very easy. I do mine so it is easy and you don't have to fool with a pully and all that stuff!

I use 1/2" washers. You can use the plastic cafe hook things, but I find the metal washers give the shade some weight and hangs much nicer. Depending on the size of the shade, I start by putting one row of washers near the bottom and on each side and middle of the back. All spaced evenly across. Sometimes 3 across the row works, but if it is a large window you may need 4 -6. Now keep adding rows of washers up the quilt. Sometimes 4 rows is all you need but depending on size you may need 5-6. I hope this makes sense. In other words you need washers going up and down the quilt all in rows and all spaced evenly. This is going to make the pleats and the things that make the quilts lower and go up. They need to be even or when you draw up the quilt the shade will not pleat evenly across.

Ok, now you need eye hooks on the top back of the board where you stapled the quilt to the board even with the washers. You will be stringing the washers into the eye hooks and it is the string, eye hook and washers that will real it up and down and creat the roman pleats. I use non-cotton string since it lasts longer and doesn't fray. Cut as many long pieces of string as you have vertical rows of washers. Be sure they are LONG you can cut them later if too long. Tie the string to the bottom washer then bring it up through the first row of washer, through the first eye hook and through the other eye hooks (you can do this so the string comes out on whichever side you want to use to raise and lower the shade). Do the same to each vertical row using a seperate string for each. When you have them all strung, hold all strands together and test to see if it raises and lowers ok and that the pleats are even and equal. If you like the effect you are done. Just tie off the strings together. If not, make whatever adjusts need made.

Hang the shade and I just use a nail to wrap the strings around when the shade is raised, but you can get fancy if you wish. I usually make mine out of muslin, but I have gone some in pretty prints and colors. I plan to do Thanksgiving and Christmas ones for all the windows -- someday in my spare time. LOL

Since cold weather is coming and if you don't want to fool with the shade type now, just make the quilt and hang. Using my method of the eye hooks to attach it to the window, it is so easy to take the quilt off the window when sunny and rehang at night. You could then take your time and add the the shade parts later, maybe doing one a day until you have them all as shades.

You can make one of these easily in a day. Best of luck. If any part didn't make sense let me know and I will try to clearify it.

-- Karen (, November 12, 2001.

We have one room that is especially cold in the winter so I put velcro along all four edges of my window quilt and also put the peel and stick velcro around the window itself. It seals really tight and makes a big difference.

-- Grannytoo (, November 12, 2001.

These were in a back issue of Countryside, anyone remember the issue number?

-- Sandie in Maine (, November 12, 2001.

Karen, I tried your layers of fabric and batting instructions using two washcloths and a paper towel (as the 'batting') -- just experimenting to see what would happen because it didn't sound right to me. I ended up with the paper towel batting on the outside. I think the order should be top fabric right side up, bottom fabric on top of it, right side down, THEN the batting. What do you think?

-- Joy F [in So. Wisconsin] (, November 12, 2001.

Yep, only I would sew them with all of that flip-flopped or the batting will drive you nuts getting hung on the top of the foot. On really thick quilts I have used a light weight piece of tissue paper to keep the batting from getting stuck up on top of the sewing foot thingy. If you are doing the quilt with the batting side down in the sandwich, then a piece of tissue will keep it from messing up in the feed dog too. When you are through you can just tear the tissue or whatever you use, off.

-- Nan (, November 13, 2001.

Oh! I am sorry for butting in Joy, I just was thinking back on the last quilt that I did like that for a baby and how frustrated I got when the batting kept getting stuck around the foot thing......I will let whoever was giving the previous advice say Yep now. So sorry to butt into the middle of a question:~)!

-- Nan (, November 13, 2001.

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