Saturday, May 5, 2012

Making a lace window screen



When I moved into this new apartment in March, I didn't really think to check if we had screens in our windows, since it was much more the kind of weather where all you ask about is the heating bill. However, on the first nice day when I opened the windows, I found them to be shamefully nude. The breeze is nice, the bugs are not. Plus, I am just waiting for the day when a squirrel leaps into my window and Andy and I reenact that scene from National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.

So I call my landlord and ask for screens, and he responds so quickly! I was like, good job landlord! Until I get home and see that he has given us these:



What. the. fuck. is that?? They are only seven inches tall! Does he think we only need that much air? That we need small barriers to keep us from jumping out of the window? If he keeps giving us these half-assed solutions, we just might need that barrier.  Whatever, they were probably just the cheapest screens at Home Depot. I don't want to fight him, since I'm trying to woo him into thinking I'm awesome enough that he should let me get a dog, so I had to come up with an alternate solution.

I went to the thrift store and bought a lace tablecloth for $2 and decided to make screens out of that instead. The lace is knit tight enough that it mimics a screen anyways.

Cut a square that is big enough to cover your window. As always on this blog, no need to measure perfectly, just make sure its big enough. We'll take care of the excess a bit later.

I'm so sorry, you never realize how dirty your windowsill is until you take pictures of it for a blog, I guess.


I tried a few methods to hold it up there, glue, thumbtacks, etc but found that a good old fashioned staple gun worked best. Pulling it taut, staple the perimeter of the lace. When everything is all tacked up, take a rotary cutter and just slice off the excess lace.  See, this is why measuring is for squares. 

The staple gunning was a bit tiring, because I did this when no one was home, so I had to use one hand to hold up the window and one to staple, but overall it was a pretty easy project. And now no creatures will be coming in my window to pick away at my flesh while I sleep (which was just one of many paranoid dreams I had on nights where it was just too warm to sleep with the windows closed.

What can I say, we picked this house for the view.

Okay, so I still need a mirror to prop the window open, but baby-steps.


xo,
zandi

14 comments:

  1. I love this!

    M

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  2. I love it too, but I'll admit that my [parental/homeowner] reaction was GAAAAAH SHE STAPLED IT TO THE WINDOW FRAME !?!?! because I can't help it. My only suggestion is propping the window up with something stout like a white wine or Malort bottle, so that if the window crashes shut it won't kick your little mirror onto the floor and break it, causing seven years' bad luck and also slivers of mirror everywhere (speaking of bad luck).

    You're my favorite new blog!

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  3. This is a fantastic idea; we need window screens too, I was thinking of buying screening from the hardware store (if the even have it) but I like this idea better. I"m thinking I might try and find some double sided sticky velcro and try that first; probably will not work in the bathroom though. I also want to make a screen door for the kitchen as the tree next door to us is alive with wasps.

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  4. There are screen making kits at big hardware stores (home depot & lowes). They come with frames for you to make custom sizes. We use them to make screens for the tops of our aquariums to keep expensive fish from ending up on the rug! You could put the lace in those so that the screen can be popped in and out. bad weather may rip the fabric. That would look neater, so that the landlord doesn't freak out about you having stapled to the window frame.

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    Replies
    1. i'm going to do that for the other windows in the house, but i was admittedly impatient on this round! thankfully it took very few staples and didn't bend the frame at all/leave any real damage! thanks for the suggestion!

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  5. Count me in...I love it too. I also think that propping the window up with a beautiful framed mirror is genius. Very clever, young lady.


    Mothercrone

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  6. Hmm, the landlord probably didn’t know what you wanted. Good thing you managed to make an alternate solution. It looks even better now with the lace. How did you learn all this DIY? Those who love vintage designs and window viewers should learn this too. Thanks for the share! ;)

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  7. This is so awesome! I'm wondering if you have any ideas on how to make this work with shutters. I live in France so all the windows have working shutters that we open and close regularly. i would love an elegant solution like this, but it would have to be able to be put up and down throughout the day.

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  8. I love it! Did you have to waterproof the fabric?

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    Replies
    1. i didn't, but its one of those granny-table cloths that has a plastic-like coating on it! its held up pretty well!

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  9. What a wonderful solution - very pretty!

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  10. Been reading this site for awhile now, always has really good posts and topics please keep it up! loads of blogs are going under lately from lack of new posts etc
    Curtains

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  11. I am making these on my next day off! You're fantastic. Thanks for all the inspiration!

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