How To Make Wooden Blinds

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Windows are a great addition to your home. Most windows, especially during construction, have the same style of glass panes with frames. 

Such windows sometimes fail to meet most homeowners’ needs, especially regarding light and privacy control. Because of this, homeowners are finding ways to modify their windows to suit their needs. 

One way to do this is through window treatments, such as blinds, shutters, and drapes. Suppose you want to adopt blinds for your home. Blinds have different styles, from roman shades to wooden and Venetian blinds.

Now, if you’re partial to wooden blinds like I am, you might be wondering how to go about making them. Stick around, because I’ve got a step-by-step guide to help you out.

Measure Your Window

The only way a window treatment, like the roman shades, will meet your needs is if it fits over your existing window. A blind too big will affect the aesthetics of your home, while one too small will bring in unwanted light, defeating its purpose. 

measuring window size

Therefore, it’s important to measure your window before making your wooden blind.

Here, measure the length and width of your windows. The measurements should start from the edge of your window frames for indoor window blinds. On the other hand, you should add a margin of approximately 10cm for outdoor blinds.   

All you require for this process is a measuring tape. Should you encounter any challenges, I recommend asking assistance from a carpenter. They have the skills to take the right measurements for your wooden blinds.

Must-Read: How to Read a Tape Measure

As you take these measurements, it’s important to draw a sketch. It’ll prevent errors as you make your wooden blinds.

Gather The Needed Tools

Before starting your project, gather the tools you need for the job. These tools will not only ensure a smooth construction process but also help you achieve accurate measurements and precise cuts.

You don’t want to be in a position where you have to pause your work just to go fetch a tool, right? Trust me, I’ve been there, and improvising can affect the final quality of your blinds.

tools and materials for making wooden blinds

So take a moment to list down what you need. For this project, you’re looking at getting a grinder, wood cutter, screws, a drill, some adhesive, and wood stain. Make sure to grab extra screws, adhesive, and stain; you’ll thank yourself later. These are all things you can easily find at your local hardware store.

Get Your Slats

Wooden slats are the cornerstone of your project. You can buy these or fabricate them yourself. If you’re like me and love the hands-on approach, you’ll first need to figure out how many slats you need. You’ll use your window measurements and the ideal width slat to get this number. 

Suppose you want to make your slats from scratch. For this process, you’ll require wooden planks, a grinder, and a woodcutter. Use the woodcutter to cut the planks into your desired slat width, length, and thickness. 

I can’t stress enough how crucial the width is. It plays a huge role in the amount of light and privacy you’ll get. So choose wisely; the wider you go, the more control you’ll have.

Prepare Your Wooden Slats

With your wooden slats ready, proceed to treat them. Treating the wood reduces termite infestation, which reduces your blinds’ durability. It’s important to stain your wood to reduce, if not prevent, moisture absorption since wood is porous. Staining also adds to the beauty of your blinds. Alternatively, you can change the wood color from dark to light.

Next, drill holes along the thickness of your slats on both ends. Follow this by preparing wooden pockets for the slats. They’ll have a tongue and groove jointing mechanism, where you’ll insert your slats in the pockets. 

preparing wooden slats for window blinds

These pockets should be slightly bigger than your slats for proper fitting. Proceed to add holes along the thickness of the pockets at the same position as those of your slats. 

Slide the slats into the pockets, and screw them in place. Yet don’t screw them too tight to allow easy movement as you open and close them. 

What follows this is preparing a wooden frame that will hold your slats. The frame should be the exact size of your window frames, as you previously measured. And you should drill holes for these, through which you’ll attach the wooden pockets. Ensure they’re in line with the holes in your pockets. 

With the holes ready, fix the pocketed slats into the frame, ensuring your position them appropriately. Like how you make bed slats stronger, secure the two together with screws. But again, don’t over-tighten; leave some room for movement.

(Check out the best screwdriver bundles here!)

Install Your Wooden Blinds

Once your window frame and the slats are well-made and jointed, it’s time to install them in your existing window. Since you took the correct measurements, the frame should fit snuggly with your window.

wooden blinds

You now want to screw the frame to your windows. The installation mechanism depends on your preferred operating mechanism. 

Suppose you want to be able to open and close your blinds to expose the window pane behind it. You’ll add hinges to your blinds, so you can open and close them like a casement window as the need arises. 

But let’s say you’re a “set it and forget it” kind of person and don’t intend to move the blinds once they’re up. In that case, you’ll simply screw the frame in place at the top of your window. Doing it this way means your blinds will stay put, and you’ll only be able to adjust the slats.

That said, your wooden blinds are ready. Lifting one of the slats automatically opens the others since they overlap. The reverse happens when closing them. 

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You might have thought that making wooden blinds was some Herculean task, but trust me, it’s totally doable, especially after you’ve read through this guide.

Seriously, it’s about having the right tools, knowing the ropes—or should I say slats?—and having a vision for what you want to create. Once you’ve got those bases covered, the whole process becomes way less intimidating. So go ahead, take this guide and run with it on your next DIY project. You’ll find it makes everything smoother and ups your odds of nailing it.

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Robert Johnson is a passionate furniture maker & carpenter, sought after for his knowledge on the craft.
You’ve probably seen his down-to-earth wisdom in USA Today, Bobvila, Family Handyman, and The Spruce, where he has shared commentary and guidance on various woodworking topics.

Robert is the brain behind Sawinery, where he aims to share tips, tricks, and a passion for all things carpentry.

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