21st Century Window Beads

Remember those groovy plastic window beads of the 60’s? They were my inspiration for this quick and easy way to get some great new fabrics in your decorating design. Go to the moda fabric website with your own decorating colors in mind and I’m sure you’ll find they have just the line you need!

One honey bun (I used Sultry by Basic Grey to go in my pink & brown bathroom )
Wood craft beads with large holes
First off, a little bit of math is required. My window measured 37 inches wide. I divided that by 1.5″ (the width of the honey bun strips) . The result was 24 point something so I rounded up to 25 strips. I picked 25 strips from the roll and laid them out in a pleasing manner.

Now, before we do the tiny amount of sewing that is required, I will show you a couple ways you can get this done with no sewing at all. One way would be to tie them on to your curtain rod

Another idea would be to attach each strip with various buttons
For this window I sewed the top “sleeve”. I would fold over the same amount on each, working one strip at a time as I sewed.
After a quick measure, I’d flip it over and sew continuously, never cutting the thread from the previous strip.
You’ll see I applied a piece of low-tack tape to the machine as a temporary sewing guide so that my line stayed straight. Now I have 25 strips sewn together. I then ran them through for a second line of stitches
Mainly because I’ve just always sewn window curtains with that top ‘pleat’. So, in less than 20 minutes you have your strips ready to hang. Now we move on to the beads.

I can’t tell you how badly I wanted to do fabric covered beads for this. OH I tried and tried. Different glues. Different applications. It just wasn’t going to work for me. And I needed fifty beads so for heaven’s sake I didn’t want to spend an hour messing with each one! There are great tutorials to be found online, and you may have better luck with it than I did, but I cut my losses and moved on to spray paint.

The above picture shows how I first started trying to spray in a box (not so great) but then I made a jig with a scrap piece of wood and lots of nails. Over the course of a day and a half I’d go out in the garage and spray a coat whenever I remembered to. True sign of a craft supplies junkie: I already had six cans of paint that would coordinate with my fabric!

You can arrange the beads in an allover random effect, or in a pattern as I did. Then just trim the ends of the strips so they sit nicely on the sill. My window was just tall enough that I only trimmed about an inch off the 45″ length, but if your window is even longer, you could attach strips end to end and hide that spot inside a bead.

Voila! Simple as that; you are done.

submitted by jen duncan

24 comments on “21st Century Window Beads

  1. Jackie says:

    I think they are pretty cool!

  2. Tami says:

    I LOVE this idea! SO simple, yet ADORABLE! I’ve been trying SO hard to come up with an idea for a curtain for my newly finished sewing room…this is PERFECT!! Thanks!

  3. Sonja says:

    Just wonderful, thank you!!!
    Luckily for me I’ll move in a few weeks and will have to change all the curtains;D

  4. Kristy says:

    That is a super cute idea!! I love it!

  5. Vickie E says:

    that is an interesting idea…hmm where can I do this? hmmm my mind is spinning here..

  6. flavia says:

    MY BLOG:

  7. GROOVY MAN !!!! (and I give it a “10” on the cuteness scale !)

  8. Sheila says:

    What a brilliant idea – I absolutely love it!!!
    And I like the way you have placed the beads in a pattern.

  9. Gosh Jen who else other than you would have thought of something so simple, yet lovely and vintage/today!? No one. What a sweet idea.

  10. happy zombie says:

    Three snaps in Z formation!!!!

    I love this Jen! Love, love, love it. And no surprise it came from your creative mind. I MUST make this – too cute for my rambling words.

  11. Sproutz says:

    Beautiful! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  12. Where’s the lava lamp? That is such a cute idea!

  13. dotti white says:

    Jen–once again I love your ideas. I’m going to keep my eyes and mind open for a good window in my home to try this window treatment! Thanks so much!

  14. LilyHaven says:

    What a fun project!!! I’m going to try this. My daughter would love this.

  15. Micki says:

    The curtain is awesome…i will be trying that pattern.
    Thanks so much!

  16. Hello! My name is Nika! I so like your blog! We are from Russia. My husband and I to work with students. We organize many clubs to construct attitudes friendship and to speak them about the Christ. I have ladys club, we to do hand made cards, scrapbook, quilt and crosstitch. It is good opportunity to testify about our God and His love! Every Saturday I have craft club for ladyes. We do cards, quilt, crochet, cross stitch too. It very not usual and new to Russian culture. I to study from different blogs how to make cards, made quilt and to use different technics. We are missionary to the Far East Russia. We are russian. We live in city Birobidzhan, it is the Jewish region in Russia. A lot of Jews live here. They have synagogues and to celebrate religious holidays. But many of them do not know the Christ. We have 2 daughters. Polina is 8 years and Liliya is 2 years.And if you are interesting about us I shall be glad give answer to you. I will glad if you can write me.Sorry my English.

  17. Neabear says:

    That is a really neat idea! Now I am wondering if it will work over my sheers in the living room. They are floor length. Hmmm. I would need a lot of strips obviously.

  18. josy26 says:

    Congratulations ! your Blog is very nice !
    Thanks for tutorials !
    I am French …

  19. H says:

    Absolutely fab !!! -now I just need a spare window…..

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