How to Restring a Wooden Roman Shade

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The cords on your Roman shade have broken. Shades with more than one pull string can still operate, but restringing becomes necessary when more than one string is gone or you have tied so many knots, nothing is working anymore. Restringing an existing shade takes a little patience, but if you can tie a knot, you can get the shade operating again.

  • Remove the Roman shade from the brackets holding it to the window.

  • Lay the Roman shade on a flat surface so that all of the holes, rings, rails and pencil marks can be seen easily.

  • Determine the number of cords. Measure each cord length and add 6 inches to each length. Add all of the cord lengths together to determine the length of the replacement cord.

    For example: The shade has five cords with a combined length of 300 inches, plus 6 inches added to each cord. This totals 330 inches. Buy 330 inches of replacement cord.

  • Purchase only a non-stretch drapery cord as replacement string for the Roman shades. Other cords may stretch or fray.

  • Locate the attachment points on the bottom rail. Attachments may be a hole through the bottom with a pin or a button holding the bottom knot. Attachments could also be a simple knot tied around the bottom rail.

  • Mark the bottom attachment points with a pencil line.

  • Locate the rings, grommets or holes with string running through them toward the top.

  • Mark with a small pencil line any hole not easy to see.

  • Locate the top rail attachment rings, hooks or loops. Top strings run through the rings and collect to one side of the Roman shade.

  • Mark the collection side of the top strings with a “C” in pencil.

  • Remove the bottom strings either by cutting the string or pulling the buttons out.

  • Run a cord through the first set of holes farthest from the “C” on the top rail. Attach the cord to the bottom rail, through the rings along the length to the top rail. Continue running the string through all of the rings on the top rail to the ring with the “C.”

  • Continue threading the cord through the next sets of rings on the length of the shade. Attach the string to the bottom rail. Run each cord along the length and through the top ring, then through the top rings toward the “C” ring.

  • Collect all of the cord lengths at the “C” ring.

  • Adjust the tension on all of the cords by gently pulling on the connection point cords. Straighten the shade completely flat on the surface. Cords should be tight without moving the shade.

  • Attach the shade to the existing brackets on the window. Readjust the cord tension if necessary. Tie a knot in all of the pull cords or braid them to make opening and closing the shade easier.

    Check the operation of the shade by lowering and raising the shade a few times.

Tips & Warnings

  • Replace worn or damaged rings before restringing.

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References

  • "The Encyclopedia of Window Fashions;" Charles T. Randall; 2002
  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images
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