Roman blind tips
Roman blinds should hang completely even to avoid looking messy. Cords on the back of the blind used to raise and lower it.
Once upon a time Roman blinds were notorious for hanging wonky. The old style way they were attached to wooden battens with cords meant the user often needed to level the blind manually. Not anymore! Child safety laws targeting the danger posed by looped cords came into force in 2014. This meant that Roman blind hanging systems got an overhaul. The upgraded chain operated metal headrails which resulted mean that the problem of manually levelling a blind has largely been solved. Headrails come in different qualities which ultimately define ease of use. With child safety in mind the chain is designed to either snap under the pressure of a 6kg weight, or fall out of the headrail to save a child’s life. The better systems will have a pull out cog in the headrail which is easy to snap back in. It’s also significantly better as it allows for the chain to be longer – 60cm up from the floor, rather than the 150cm necessary with the breakaway in the chain. In some situations using the latter can result in a very short chain which is too high up to be user friendly. I have had calls from people telling me they need to stand on a chair to operated their blinds! Needless to say, you would be wise to upgrade to a better system. Headrails are not created equal. There are different gearing components inside and the choice depends on the weight of your blind. The heavier the blind (due to fabric weight or size of blind) the slower it will pull up.
At the back of the blind are cords by which the blind is pulled up. These cords also form a loop between the rods which pose a child safety risk. The maker must use special clips which snap apart under pressure to make sure a child cannot get entangled in it. Of course, snagging a blind on a window handle may also cause these clips to trigger. However, they can be clipped back together easily. Remember that roman blinds are made out of fabric and thread and as such they should be operated with care and never tugged as this can break threads, snap clips, trigger chain breakaways and ultimately shorten the life of the blind. With care, a well made blind can last many years. Where price is not an issue, there are now motorised headrails which mean you can operate your blind at a touch of a button or a call of ‘Alexa!’. I would never advise washing or even dry cleaning a roman blind as there is a possibility of shrinkage. Simply vacuum clean them a few times a year with a soft brush upholstery attachment to keep them looking their best.