Fitting a roller blind over a window reveal is a quick and easy solution for adding a window covering to a kitchen, bathroom or even bedroom.
Once opened out, a roller blind (as long as its the correct width and length) will completely cover a window reveal and, unlike curtains, once wound away, will totally open up the window, unlike curtains which can overhang the edges.
Roller blinds are also relatively cheap to buy and, as long as you have a drill/driver and a few masonry bits, you don’t need and fancy tools to fit them.
Read on below and find out how to easily fit a roller blind over a window reveal.
Can I cut a roller blind down to size?
Many roller blinds allow for the end user to cut them down to size if they are too large for your particular window reveal.
With most makes and models, the instructions normally suggest doing this with a junior hacksaw. They usually say to measure and mark the point on the blind that you want to cut it to and then cut it down to size using a hacksaw by cutting through the blind material and the inner core.
Although this technique does work, it’s not the best as it leaves you with jagged and frayed edges which look ugly and untidy.
In our opinion, cutting a roller blind down should be done by opening the blind out completely and cutting the fabric all the way up with a hobby knife and straight edge or a pair of upholsterers scissors (really sharp).
The roller section or inner core itself (usually cardboard or plastic) can then be cut with a junior hacksaw. The result is a much neater cut.
Face fitting or inside fitting
As with most window coverings there are two different ways to fix them so they cover a window – inside the window reveal (inside fit) or over the outside so it drops down over the window itself (face fitting).
Ultimately it is up to you how you choose to bit your blind.
Inside fitting is generally neater as you can tuck the blind up inside the window reveal itself, but it can be quite tricky as access is limited and tight and quite often you will have to drill and fix into a lintel which isn’t easy.
Face fitting is generally easier as there is much more room and you can in some cases avoid any lintels, but it can look a little untidy.
How to fit a roller blind
Before we start fixing anything in place, firstly measure your window opening. If the roller blind is to be fitted to the outside and hang over the entire opening then allow a suitable overhang either side of the window reveals.
We suggest, when fitting or fixing to the wall face you allow 50mm either side of the opening size and always measure to make sure the distance either side of the window is exactly the same.
If fitting the blind inside the window opening allow some distance (we suggest 25mm each side) between the edge of the blind and the window reveal.
In this example we were going to face fix a roller blind over a window in a garden office
Identify each fixing bracket
Each end of your blind will have a different bracket. One end will be shaped to take the pull cord or chain and the other bracket will be a fixed bracket to allow the blind to rotate.
Depending on the type and manufacturer of your blind, the actual brackets and pull cord mechanism will probably be different than the particular blind we are using here, but for completeness the following image shows the type of brackets we had.
Test fit to know how they fit
Before fitting anything in place it’s always a good idea to do a test fit first to make sure you know exactly how your particular roller blind goes together and operates.
In this case the pull cord mechanism featured a recess that slots into a locator on the actual roller that allows the roller to turn when the pull cord is pulled.
This indicated exactly where the pull cord insert should be pushed into the roller body.
The pull cord bracket featured a spline that would sit into the pull cord, holding it in place and allowing the roller to turn when the chain was pulled.
The idle bracket at the other end simply featured a housing for the pin on the end of the roller body to sit in and rotate freely when the chain was pulled.
The idle bracket also featured a clip that could be pushed in once the roller was in place to hold the pin in the bracket recess.
Measure, mark and position first blind bracket
Before fixing anything in place we need to know the exact position the object in question needs to be fixed. In this case we want the blind to sit central to the window so that when it’s unrolled it covers the glazed area fully.
In this example we were fitting a 1200mm blind over a 1200mm upvc window. As the window was 1200mm wide including the frame, the frame itself accounted for 50mm either side of the glazing. giving us enough overhang to fully cover the glass.
Firstly we measured the size of the reveal which was actually 1210mm width. Next we measured the width of the blind including the brackets which was as suspected 1200mm, so we wanted to fix the brackets 5mm inside the width of the reveal.
Starting with the left hand bracket, we measured and marked a point 5mm in from the edge of the reveal and then positioned and leveled our bracket in place. Using a pencil we then marked through each fixing hole.
In this case we were simply fixing into a sheet timber surface which we could just screw into fairly easily.
In the majority of cases you will probably be fixing into a masonry surface, which will involve drilling a hole using a 6mm masonry bit and then inserting a red wall plug which you can then fix into (more information on fixing to masonry surfaces can be found in our project here).
to help in this instance, we drilled a small pilot hole to assist with inserting our screws. Tips on drilling pilot holes can be seen in our project here.
With the pilot holes drilled we then screwed the first bracket in place.
While screwing up the bracket, use a spirit level to check that the bracket is horizontally square.
Fit blind and mark second bracket position
With the first bracket firmly fixed we then inserted the roller blind with the chain mechanism attached into the bracket, positioned the right hand bracket on to pin of the roller and then moved the blind up into position above the window.
We then leveled the blind using a spirit level and marked the fixing holes on the second bracket with a pencil.
Once marked, we removed the roller and bracket and put it to one side.
Fix second bracket in place
As with the first bracket, we then drilled some small pilot holes to help with screwing in our blind bracket screws.
With pilot holes drilled we then screwed the bracket in place, ensuring it was totally square.
Squaring the second bracket with the first is essential as if they are not totally aligned then the entire roller blind itself will bind as the rolling mechanism will be stiff and awkward.
Fit blind and test
Once both brackets are firmly fixed, the final job now is to install the roller blind and chain mechanism in place.
Tilt the splines of the chain into the carrier on the bracket, making sure that the chain itself is hanging at the base and not out of the top and the roller action of the blind wont work.
Once the splines are engaged, gently slide them into the bracket and then, moving to the other end, slide the pin into the right hand bracket and ensure its pushed into the housing.
The final job then is to push in what ever type of retainer (if there is one) that your particular blind features. In this case it was a small push in clip. This then firmly holds the pin in its housing preventing the roller from jumping and and the whole item falling to the ground.
Once secured test your roller blind out to make sure all works as it should and you’re done!
Fitting a roller blind over a window reveal is a fairly simply job. Just take your time and make sure everything is square and level and you can’t go wrong!