If your new window treatments include blinds, save the hefty installation fee by hanging them yourself.
Step 1: Decide on placement Decide whether you want to mount the blinds on the inside or outside of the window frame. It's a matter of personal preference. Will they fit flush between the inside edges of the window frame and just cover the glass — or will they cover the entire window itself and extend all the way to the outer edges of the frame?
Step 2: Measure frame Measure the window frame both horizontally and vertically so you know what size blinds you need. Your measurements will determine both the length of the head rail — the long horizontal piece that the blinds drop from — and how far down your new blinds should fall.
Step 3: Have them sized Once you pick out blinds, have the store cut them to size.
Step 4: Read the instructions Read the manufacturer's instructions before you begin installation, so you understand any unique elements of the blinds you chose.
Step 5: Mark the frame Find the end brackets that came with your blinds. They will anchor the ends of the head rail. Mark the window frame where the brackets will be installed. Make sure they are evenly spaced from the sides of the frame and — if they're within the frame — from the face of the window.
TIP: If you're mounting the blinds inside the window frame, mark the end brackets at least an inch and a quarter from the face of the glass so the blinds won't touch it.
Step 6: Mark the support brackets Keeping in line with your earlier marks, pencil in the location of the support brackets, which will be spaced evenly along the head rail and help hold it up. How many brackets you need depends on the length of your blinds.
Step 7: Drill holes Hold the brackets up to the frame to mark exactly where the screws should go, and use an electric drill to create holes for attaching them. Use a drill bit slightly smaller than your screws.
Step 8: Install the brackets Using your guide holes, screw in one bracket at a time by hand. It is critical that the brackets are well aligned so that the blinds will rise and fall evenly.
TIP: Rubbing wax on the screws before you install the brackets will make them screw in more smoothly. A candle works well.
Step 9: Attach blinds Consult your manual for the final directions on how to attach the blinds. In many cases, you will insert each side of the head rail into the appropriate end bracket and snap it closed.
Step 10: Attach the tilt wand Look for a small plastic spinning mechanism sticking out of one side of the head rail. The tilt wand included with your blinds has tiny hooks attached to one end that will easily latch onto this mechanism, allowing you to open and close the blinds.
Step 11: Keep extras Hang on to the instructions as well as any extra pieces of equipment that came with your blinds. You might need them if you ever want to reinstall your blinds.
FACT: The early Egyptians tied together reeds from the Nile River to create an early version of window blinds.