At first I tried to find a cheap solution online. Most shades or blinds for skylights run in the $100's. Some require assembly on the roof and have to be put up and taken down. I'm ladder-phobic. Recalling dad's design, I would only need a broom handle to slide the blinds over or off the lites. Much better. Now that the weather has cooled significantly (and the forest fires too) I have the blinds drawn back.
Note: I'm borrowing from my window and door sales experience in this 'ible. I call each "window" in my skylight a "lite."
Step 1: Tools & Materials
Materials (about $30):
- Small diameter doweling per lite (costs about 85¢ per foot for hemlock, sold in 8' lengths)
- Old tablecloth or sheet (white to reflect light) with enough fabric to cover each lite (thread count up to you)
- Small nails or screws (3 per dowel)
- Fabric glue
Tools (few and simple):
- Drill & small drill bit
- Screwdriver or hammer
- Hand saw
- Scissors suitable for cutting cloth
- Measuring tape
- Straight edge (optional)
Step 2: Measuring
My lites were 770 mm long and 606 wide including the lip surrounding the lite. this "ledge" lets the doweling rest on the inside edge of the lite while supporting the cloth part of the blind.
My advice is to measure all, draw diagrams, THEN shop for cloth. I did not have enough material in my tablecloth for 6mm of hem I was going to do -- with the fabric glue. Yes, I'm not a sew-er -- but i can glue with the best of them! Also, the small city where i live no longer has fabric stores. And box store staff are of no help. So you may have to improvise too...
Step 3: Cutting
Cut 3 doweling to the correct length and test that they rest on the ledge of the skylight. One doweling at each end and one in the middle. The middle one supports the cloth so it does not hang down too low.
Step 4: Assembly
Affix all three dowels to cloth.