West Elm style inspired wooden curtain rods that can save you lots of money and still provide a modern, unique style at less than half the cost of the original rods from West Elm.
Ah, West Elm. I love them so much. I just don’t always love their prices. Which is why I am STOKED to be writing this post today. We decided to make DIY curtain rods during a snow day so it was off the cuff, one of the easiest things we’ve done so far (well, kinda) and didn’t take long at all! AND saved us about $50. Now, that’s just all the ingredients I need for a recipe for some GOOD OLD FASHIONED MOM FUN. idk what that means. Just keep reading.
If you follow us on Instagram, you might have seen that we were considering taking down our plantation shutters in our house. If you guys do not follow us on Instagram, what are you waiting for?! Just kidding.
All the windows that are in the front of our house had plantation shutters.
Let me take a TV time out to talk about this for a second. We actually really liked them. They are also very expensive so the thought of us taking them down just made our wallets shudder. So, why did we want to take them down for $10 Ikea curtains and a $17 curtain rod? Because of this: Money doesn’t create the feel you’re going for in your house.
If you don’t have $500 to spend on a light fixture or window treatment you really want, then don’t.
If you don’t have $3000 to put in new floors in your entire house, then don’t.
If you move into a house that has really expensive window treatments and they’re not your style, CHANGE THEM. It’s your house!
*jump* (<– That was me, jumping off my soapbox.)
Now, on to the fun stuff! I want to show you how to make these knockoff West Elm curtain rods for yourself! The measurements here will be for one curtain rod for a 32″ window. Let’s do it!
How to create these West Elm curtain rods:
*Some affiliate links are provided.
- (1) 2″ dowel rod
- (1) 1 1/4″ dowel rod
- (2) Galvanized ceiling plate. Gotta be real here. I have no clue what this is actually used for in real life.
- (2) 1″ Galvanized split ring tubing hanger. ^^Ditto to what I said about that.
- (1) 3/8″ allthread bolt. This link is for 5/8 because for some reason, the link for the bolt we actually used doesn’t exist.
- (1) 1/4″ allthread bolt
- (1) 1/4″ Tee Nut
- (4) 1/4″ copper coupling with stop. Let’s just say I’m glad my husband knew what he was going for when he left to get these supplies because I have never even heard of these things, much less would have been able to find them in a store.
- Matte black spray paint
- Wood glue
- Stain in color of your choice. We chose Special Walnut because … regular walnuts just won’t cut it.
- [Optional]: Craft dowels (you’ll see why these are optional in step 10)
- Gather your supplies. (Do I really have to put this as step one? Internet seems to think I have to.)
- Measure your window. For reference, our ceilings are 8 feet and our windows are 32 inches wide. We wanted our curtain rod to be as high as it could go to help with the fact that our ceilings are short enough for Jordan to touch them just standing there, so we measured so that the base of the wall plate would be right at the base of where our crown moulding will (hopefully someday VERY SOON plz Jesus) be.
- Your 2″ dowel rod will be the finials. We made ours 3″ long. We started with 4″, but felt that was a little overkill. Cut them to size with your saw. Ya know, sometimes you don’t get pictures of steps with power tools because your toddler needs a “thnack” every five seconds (which is toddler for “snack”, obvi. Dang it, I’ll feed her forever if she keeps on being this cute.)
- Now look. I’m going to throw some math at you but hopefully this won’t make you run for the hills and let an invisible fire burn you up.
(“Please don’t let the invisible fire burn my friend” – Cal Naughton, Jr. / me)
Width of window + width of window trim you may have on either side + amount of overhang you want = length of your 1 1/4″ dowel rod.
For example, this is how it worked out for us: 32 (width of our window) + 7 (3.5″ window casing on either side of our windows) + 9 (4.5″ overhang on each side) = 48.
- Using your saw, cut your 1 1/4″ dowel to the number that you got in the aforementioned step. Again, for us, this was 48. We actually ended up trimming of a bit of the end to ensure the cut was super flat and ours went from 48 to 47 3/4″. No biggie.
- Now that all your pieces are cut, it’s time to stain! You probably want to do this in a well ventilated area. Or, if you’re super professional like us, you can just do this on the end of your kitchen counter. It’s cool.
- While your stain is drying, you’ll want to assemble all those weird metal parts we told you to buy like this:I laughed when I saw this because it looks like the shrug emoji which I use v. often in real life. This is the ceiling flange on bottom, the 3/8 bolt cut down to a couple inches with 2 of those copper couplings covering it and then the
shrug emoji armssplit ring hanger.
- After you’ve assembled 2 of these guys, spray paint them with our absolute favorite, use it on everything, matte black spray paint.
- Once your stain has dried, it’s time to get to work. You take creative liberty here, Picasso, but for us, we glued one finial on and then made the other side removable so our curtains could be taken down and washed. Our daughter (and her father) really like Cheetos and these are white curtains.
- If there will be a side you’ll be gluing: To help hold the glue while it’s drying, drill a hole as close to the center as possible of both your finial and your curtain rod. You can eyeball this. We did. Break off a little piece of (
that Kit Kat Bar) a teeny dowel rod and place it in to your curtain rod dowel. We did add a dab of hot glue in the hole before putting the little dowel in there.
- Add wood glue around the base of the dowel and then push on your finial end. Allow this to dry for a couple hours before messing with it.
- For the other side that needs to be removable, you’ll drill a 1/4″ hole in your finial end and hammer in the tee nut. For the curtain rod side, you’ll cut a piece off that bolt, drill a 1/4″ hole, then put a dab of hot glue and put in your bolt.
If you’re wondering why I have no photos of us cutting the bolt, it’s because we used a tool we probably shouldn’t have and it sparked a lot and I thought he was going to set himself on fire, so I chose to act like it didn’t happen cuz PICS OR IT DIDN’T HAPPEN, right?
- Measure and hang up your now sprayed bracket that will hold your curtain rod. We drilled these into studs that were on either side of the window which just worked out swimmingly.
- Hang your curtains on the rod itself and then hang! Easy peasy!
I am SO happy with how these turned DIY curtain rods turned out! What do you guys think??
Whew! We did it! Is it just me or did that feel like a really long post? Sorry. I hate it too. But before I go, y’all know I gotta do a little price breakdown for ya:
the how much for us:
- 2″ dowel rod – $8.87, BUT you can get 8 curtain rods out of one of these, so it’s about $1 for this one that we made!
- 1 1/4″ dowel rod – $4.98
- Galvanized ceiling plates – $1.27 each
- Galvanized split ring tubing hangers – $1.70 each
- 3/8″ allthread bolt – $3.89, but you’ll have enough to do 5 from one bolt. So, this broke down to about 75 cents each.
- 1/4″ allthread bolt – .98 cents and you’ll have enough for at least for, so you’re sitting pretty at A SINGULAR QUARTER HERE FOLKS.
- 1/4″ Tee Nut – These come in a pack of four and you only need one, so again, A SINGULAR QUARTER Y’ALL.
- 1/4″ copper coupling with stops – 78 cents each.
- Stain – Had on hand
- Matte black spray paint – Had on hand.
- Wood glue – Had on hand.
- [Optional]: Craft dowels – had on hand
$17 + tax.
the how much for you:
Depending on what you have on hand, this will be between $21 and $30. However, If you’ve read anything that we’ve done before, you know how much we love matte black spray paint so if you don’t already have that, that’s on you. JK. Kinda.
Yes, we would do this again! In fact, we actually most definitely will be doing this again because we only did one window in our den and we have two. HA! We just wanted to see if we liked it before we took the bigger plunge.
Dude, you’d think Home Depot was paying us to write this post because we got LITERALLY every supply we needed from there minus the little dowel rods that I already had on hand because I’m a crafter, B U T they’re not. If they want to though, holla atcha gurl. I can usually be paid in trips to Taco Bell or coupons for naps.
If you’re still reading this, go ahead and get yourself a little treat. You worked hard out there today, buddy.
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