Easy Pelmet Boxes

Many of you asked about the pink pelmet boxes in my girls' room and I’ve been so excited to share the mini-tutorial! It’s an easy and inexpensive one!



Two of the three windows in the bedroom were obstructed by furniture, so curtain panels (my default window treatment) weren’t really an option. I thought about transforming the mini-blinds into fabric shades, but I was really hoping to find a way to make a structured valence or pelmet box.

In the early planning stages, I was going to buy some plywood at Home Depot and use an electrical saw to cut out a fun design. That was intimidating for me though, and the price of the wood and a new saw (or a carpenter) was going to add up. Then I realized that I didn’t need anything fancy in this room – just something flat that could be cut easily and that was sturdy enough to hold up some batting and fabric.

Enter: foam core board.

I picked up three sheets at Michael’s for $1.99 each. I carefully drew one half of my pelmet shape on to the foam core, cut it out with a box cutter and used that piece as my template. I also cut some short pieces that would be my sides.

I had bought some L-brackets, screws, nuts and washers to assemble the corner pieces, but I ended up just duct taping the whole thing!! This project was SO easy!!


Duct tape holding the two halves together (above) and the side/corner pieces (below)

Then, using ¼” staples and my trusty PowerShot Pro, I upholstered the pelmets with some batting and pink linen left over from a client’s project. I ended up using only about a yard of fabric for all three pelmets.

After stapling, I used Fabri-tac to glue on ¼” navy blue bias tape as a top and bottom border.

I don’t have a photo of this step, but to hang the pelmets, I simply epoxied some wall hangers to the back of the foam core, and hung the boxes on the walls with nails.



And that’s it! It took me about two hours to do this project - from design conception to hanging the three pelmets. So fast and so easy!



--P.S. Our internet has been down all weekend (I’m posting this from my husband’s office), so if I owe you an email I promise to have something to you as soon as possible. We’re hoping to have the situation fixed in the next couple days. Thanks!!

129 comments:

Trisha said...

This is just so smart! I saw a quick and pretty-much-disastrous tutorial on the Rachel Ray show once not long ago, but it all kind of fell apart due to the time constraints and quick-messy work. They added a ready-made strip of nailhead trim in lieu of your ribbon. (I like yours much better!) I'm happy to see that this can really work, and a super inexpensive window treatment really MIGHT be in my near future!

Grits414 said...

Wow!!!!!!! How neat and beautiful!!!

Pam @ bibbidi-bobbidi-beautiful said...

That looks fantastic and you've just helped me figure out a decorating dilemma I've been losing sleep over! BTW- I'm completely obsessed with your blog and I linked to you here:
http://bibbidi-bobbidi-beautiful.blogspot.com/2009/09/girls-shared-bedroom-reveal.html

Megan said...

Brilliant!! Marking this idea for sure. I do love your daughters room. My daughter is all about pink. I call her room the pink palace but have slowly been adding a bit of color other than pink or white. I think my fav part of the room is the yellow mirror. Or the window treatments. Or the headboards. Or the nightstand. Or the duvets. Hmm....I just like it all!

High-Heeled Foot in the door said...

Jenny! How fab is that!!! I totally thought it was MDF!!!!! Amazed by it. Great idea!

paula said...

I would have never guessed! I guess I have a new project to work on:)

Em said...

Hooray! I've been checking for this post religiously. (And subsequently bummed out all weekend) Sorry about the internet, hope it gets sorted out quickly!

Anonymous said...

wow, that is INGENIUS

Susan said...

Wow!! What a great idea. They look great. I love the look of the entire room.

Rachael said...

So awesome! I love love love that you do things we can all do. It's totally achievable you just happen to be super creative, too!

Isabella & Max Rooms said...

They are beyond gorgeous and look very high end!
Janell

Jenna said...

I cannot believe how incredible those look! You are brilliant!! I am totally going to borrow that idea some time in the future.

b. said...

you are soooo CREATIVE!!!!!!!! LOVE it and thank you for sharing!!!

Ann-Michelle said...

The colors in the room are so lovely! I wish I had such a good eye.

Katie said...

So genius! Can't wait to try this in my bedroom! You are such an inspiration -- keep the great ideas coming!

Lavender and Lilies said...

that looks great!

MyLittleHappyPlace said...

Seriously. You kill me - in the most awesome kind of way! Knock my socks off each and every post!!

CJ said...

Wow! Genius, I just might have to attempt this myself!

The Consummate Hostess said...

What a wonderful idea! I am afraid that I am not crafty at all but I am inspired. The room is a charming retreat for a litte lady.

My Notting Hill said...

Foam core board - very smart and creative!! Love the bedroom.

dr said...

what a great idea! I'm dying to make this for my daughter's room -

Kelleigh Ratzlaff Designs said...

No WAY!! I love this! I can't believe this was so easy! I must admit to chuckling just a little when I read that it was foam board!! This is SO inspiring!

Shelley said...

Boy oh boy, I am bookmarking you right NOW. You have beautiful taste and after reading through many of your previous posts I am so inspired. Just because I live in No. California doesn't mean we can't be best friends :)

Jane said...

Hi Jenny! I just LOVE your blog and especially was so amazed at this entry....

I decided to feature you on my blog because I love it so much! :) Thanks for all the posts and I look forward to seeing more.

-Jane @ http://brunchatthebeach.blogspot.com

Lisa said...

I'm not quite sure I know of anyone else in the world that could have come up with that idea! You are amazing!

Dagny @ Beautiful Living said...

Wow, I can't belive you made those yourself! I did a post about your bedroom makeover on my blog btw :) Very impressed!

Basha said...

This is so awesome, creative, and seems pretty easy. What do you think of applying this concept to a queen size headboard? I am intimidating by cutting my own wood too.

A.P. said...

I love your creativity! The fact that it's inexpensive is also a plus :) Thanks for sharing!

Blueprint Bliss said...

So smart- as usual. I just love your ideas and that you take the time to share them!

Ms. Bright said...

I just love when things are "rigged" but can still wind up looking so completely hi-end and custom. So smart!

Design Esquire said...

Wow. I was away last week and am just catching up on my blog reading, and I can't believe how beautiful you made your daugthers' room. You are incredibly talented and creative, and thank you so much for all your tips.

Heather said...

You did an amazing job! It looks totally professional!

Amy said...

I am amazed at this idea! Thanks so much for the tutorial!

Casey said...

wow! I never would have guessed that they were foam board! It's fabulous

smitten design said...

Thanks for continuing to share your projects. Your talent is incredible!

bethany said...

You are awesome - I love getting my daily dose of inspiation from your blog! Thanks!

Haven and Home said...

Genius!

Elise said...

These look great. I was just wondering how you got the fabric to be so smooth around the curved area. Could you explain how you attached it?

nkp said...

I can't believe how quickly this came together and how finished and professional it looks. Really, I bow to you. Another amazing transformation!

sarah said...

oh my word! you are amazing! Those are so beautiful!! WoW!

Trista said...

Ridiculous. If I could have just an ounce of your creativity, my rented house would not look like a one bedroom mess. Thanks for sharing. I look forward to copying more of your ideas. ha ha

Kath' said...

I really love these. Do you have a template for me to follow as I make them ? That I can print out. Also what are the measurements I didnt see that? Maybe you can just let me know how to measure my windows and how much to go over off each side. I am so excited I found these. Now a blog follower to keep up with you and your life. I am having a blog contest right now. Come follow me and enter to win a few things. Kath' at dublshot@comcast.net and www.lilbitoldlilbitnew.blogspot.com

Bonnie said...

This is fantastic! I've been thinking about how to turn my study into a nursery and one of the things on my list was Pelmet boxes. I was just crossing it off my mental list for the same reasons you mentioned- cost of wood/parts and sawing/creating the thing when this post comes along! I can't wait to try it out. Also, your little girls new room looks AMAZING! An excellent job as always.

urbansardines said...

You are pure DIY magic :-)

Sarah La Rose said...

Your daughters room looks fantastic!! I absolutely love your style. It's so fresh and easy. Thanks for writing such a great blog. It's one of my favourites to read each day.

Style Scout said...

you are so inspiring! I love to see what you come up with...it makes me more bold in trying to DIY in my home.

Pink Wallpaper said...

shut up! foam board...wow. I have got to try this. you are a master!!

inthetweeds said...

GENIUS! Omigosh I love this! This whole room is just the cutest thing!

Vanessa said...

I've done the same thing before, but I used a piece of insulation board. You know that stuff they put on the outside of a house before they brick or put siding on it? Anyway, you can get a pretty large piece (about 3x5 feet) for like $8. It is a about 1/2 inch thick. It works really well. We used long T sewing pins to attach the sides and top and then "upholstered" them. Then, we screwed L brackets into the wall and just sat the finished pelmet board (didn't know they were called that until I heard Candice Olsen talk about them!) on them. Yours look awesome!

KatieBabie said...

this just blew my mind! FOAM CORE!!!!!!!!!!!?!?!?! Brilliant darling... just brilliant!

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful idea. This really does put design within reach of everyone!

Pittsy said...

This room is fantastically original. I love your details and your DIY style tips. Thanks for the how-to on the pelmet boxes. I think I want to do this in my powder room.

tarheel said...

wow- foam board. You're too clever, and they look fantastic.

Elise said...

Lovely post, really enjoyed it - & I'm loving your blog ! Best wishes..

Miss Wendy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Miss Wendy said...

I love this! It's so easy and no one would guess it wasn't MDF. I may be using this in my kitchen.

Kendal Blanchard said...

Thank you so much! I'm off to Michael's and I can't wait to report back to you on how mine went!

Anonymous said...

I might even try this now that I see how easy it is!

Andrea

sarah @ realestatestyle said...

I guess they are light too? Can't wait to try something like this with foam board!

Alanna said...

Wow, these are so wonderful! The perfect solution to the impossible-to-curtain windows in my living room, too. I'll have to try it.

I absolutely love the fabric on the headboard too. Did you make that? I'd love it if you could tell me where the fabric is from!

Averill said...

Brilliant idea to use foam core -- it's not like the pelmet boxes will get heavy use so a weaker material isn't an issue. Plus, they're lightweight and much easier to hang than wood/MDF!

Anonymous said...

Hi, I LOVE this idea. I am having trouble figuring out how you hung the boxes. Is there any way you can take a picture of the side of the box (where I think the hanger is) and add it? Thank you so much!!!

Sara said...

I LOVE these, but I had to comment because I made something similar for my living room windows a couple years ago using the same methodology - foam board and lots of TAPE. Worked like a charm. :-)

compulsively compiled said...

You are a genius. I am so happy to have found your blog. I'm sure you hear that all of the time but really. Amazing. I think I'll do something around the house tomorrow instead of just thinking about it(like I do most days).

Melissa Stover said...

now that's a great idea. foam board instead of wood!

Centsational Girl said...

That photographed so beautifully, I would have sworn it was solid wood. Totally genius. Love this idea so much. Bookmarking now !

Kate
www.centsationalgirl.com

Liz said...

How do you know how big to make the pelmets?

Meg said...

Now that's clever!! LOL Good on you!!

wide open spaces said...

really phenomenal. love the fabric, the colors. just beautiful!

Aimee said...

Hooray!!! Thank you SO much! You have just solved the window issue in my boys' bedroom! I now officially adore you. :)

girlskickass said...

this is a really neat idea. the room looks cute too, especially the beside table.

Boxwood Terrace said...

That is brilliant. I have two problem windows and have been thinking about wood pelmets, but like you, didn't want to deal with saws, wood, etc. Thanks for sharing the how-to.

Jenny said...

Basha - I'm not sure that I would make a headboard out of foam board, but if you do want to try it, make sure you get the double thickness version (available at Michaels). I also like one commenter's use of insulation board. That comes in larger lengths too and might end up being the less expensive option.

Elise - to get the fabric to lay flat around the rounded corners, I cut a line up to basically the top of inverted peaks and then pulled the fabric to the sides. Does that make sense? Really the trick with any upholstery project is to pull the fabric tight, especially when working with curved designs.

Kath - Sorry, no template! I wish I could help there. I just sort of eyeballed it for the design. It's really easy if you just draw one half of the design and then flip it over and trace that half to draw the other side. Hope that helps!

Liz - I made my pelmets so there was about 2" of clearance on every side of the blinds hardware. You don't want the box too big, but there should be clearance enough for the mechanisms. Just measure the width and depth of your window casement or blinds and add a few inches to your design to be safe.

For those with questions about hanging the boxes, I don't really have a way to upload any new pictures of the pelmet backs right now with my lack of internet situation, but the idea is very basic. Just epoxy some hanging loops/hooks/teeth/other mechanism to the backs and use said mechanism to hang the pelmets on some long nails you put in the wall. The boxes are so, so light that it really doesn't need to be more complicated than that.

If anyone does their own version of the foam board pelmets, I'd LOVE to see pictures!! There are so many cool shapes that these could be made into, I know I'll be using the project idea again myself!

Jessica Hills said...

Wow! That's awesome! I can't wait to make some!

Rachel said...

Just thought I should let you know that I purchased some fabric and am going to try this project this weekend!

Daily Grommet said...

Jenny, you are a goddess!
We LOVE this project and your Little Green Notebook is addicting. We love all things smart, gorgeous and easy! OK, we're hooked! We'll be visiting often. Hope your computer problems get fixed soon!

Cat said...

Hi Jenny - I've never upholstered before but these would be perfect for my husband's office (not in pink, of course!)...

How did you get such a perfect pattern? And how do you pull into the tight edges without getting wrinkles? I'm fascinated by this one, I must admit. Thank you again for the inspiration!

have a lovely said...

precious! just precious! my sister and i shared a room growing up and my mom made us a lovely pelmet box for our window too! what lucky little misses you have!

Swanseagirl said...

Wow!! Just discovered your site and just love your DIY style. Wish I could make a pelmet for my daughter's room but her lone window is tucked into a corner, bordering a closet. Would you suggest a roman blind or a cafe curtain? More for colour/finishing off the room than for light control. There's a vanity in front of the window. Tan walls and blue/white foral quilt, accessories with a white iron bed and small chandelier. Any ideas welcome!

Jen West Design said...

Really, really, really cute. I'm so impressed!!! Your girls are lucky to have such a stylish room! Cool.

Rachel@oneprettything.com said...

Is there ANYTHING you can't do with foam core?!? I love this. I bookmarked all the posts with this room, it's just fabulous and wonderful inspiration for the guest room I'm creating with two twins. I even have the same window! Thanks so much for being so generous with your creativity! I'll be linking to this.

Erin said...

Hi Jenny. I am now obsessed with doing this, but what I **REALLY** want to know is:
WHERE IS THAT FABRIC ON YOUR DAUGHTER'S HEADBOARD FROM?
it is so beautiful I want to eat it.

i love your blog!

Who Is Lynda said...

You have inspired me. I will be doing a like project in my home this weekend (my son permitting.) Thank you for your genius.

Sandra said...

I've wanted these in our master bedroom ever since we moved in (4 yrs ago,so sad...). Yours look so spectacular--I'm doing it! (btw, I just found you via one pretty thing and your blog is quite addictive! Love it :).

Jen said...

This is truly beautiful! What a great idea. I've linked to your tutorial. Thank you so much!

Lorie said...

Gorgeous!!! What a great project! I am adding your blog to my Reader IMMEDIATELY!

Re:Fresh Design Studio said...

SUCH a GREAT idea! I love this! Your girls' room is beautiful. I just love it!

Room to Inspire said...

I just came over from Design Dazzle. This is great. I am very excited to snag this idea for my little girls room!

Chelsea

Lindsey @ Better After said...

Such a great idea! And really, why not use foam board? Its' not like they're going to get a lot of wear and tear hanging up there on the wall! Love it!

Debbie said...

How pretty! I love your daughter's room - that headboard is scrumptious!
http://girlwhimsy.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

I love your Pelmet Boxes, but DID YOU MAKE THE BEAUTFUL HEAD BOARDS AS WELL???? Love love love them.

Jenny said...

I was at a thrift store today and found (3) 5 foot wooden pelmet boxes with batting and fabric for $3 each. I just need to recover them or possibly use fabric spray paint. I'm not sure which. I'm thinking a deep plum with white ribbon trim to go with my turquoise, gold and black room.

Anyone else have a a good color combo for my pelmets?

Totty said...

Question?!?!?
How did you get the fabric to wrap around the bottom/center section? I tried to copy your same exact design and I could not get the fabric to work with me. The point where the curve met the angle was the hardest part! Can you help me??
tottyvb@gmail.com

Fancy Nancy Chronicles said...

Hi ... I love these, and we are renting a home right now ... and they are perfect because they look amazing, and won't break the bank! ;')
Can you help me with the last step please?
"I simply epoxied some wall hangers to the back of the foam core, and hung the boxes on the walls with nails."
What glue did you use? Did you glue it to the top of the pelmet? what hangers did you use?
myenglishgarden@hotmail.com
Many thanks!
Nancy

michelle@somedaycrafts said...

I love this!!!!!!! They are so beautiful! I am featuring this at somedaycrafts.blogspot.com Grab my 'featured' button.

Cara said...

I'm so glad I found this tutorial. I had a vision for doing something like this for our daughters' room but thought it would be too hard -- until I found this tutorial!

I banged it out in a weekend. I was perplexed on the hanging instructions so I used a safety pin that I fastened vertically to the top inside of each end. Then I hung the "ring" part of the safety pin on a nail head. Perfect. EASY.

June said...

These look great. About a year ago Michaels had some instructions on how to do something similar with the long styrofoam sheets. Here's the link, http://www.michaels.com/art/online/projectsheet?pid=e06216

Heidi @ Wonder Woman Wannabe said...

Fabulous! I think this is just thing thing I've been looking for to do in my babies room! LOVE that it looks so easy and do-able AND affordable.
Well done!!!

A Perfect Peach said...

You are genius! I love your blog!

Christie Chase said...

Thank you so much for this tutorial. I was looking for something lightweight that I could make on the cheap for my client and I am so happy to have found your pelmet post! I linked your blog and pelmet post here
http://christiechase.blogspot.com/2009/11/106the-pleasure-of-pelmets.html

thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

I really love this! However, we have a really large window. Well, its really 2 windows but they are side by side in one frame.
So, should I make one really large pelmet or make 2 and butt them right next to each other?
Do these look just as cute with curtains underneath?
Thanks! :)

Ani said...

Very cute! I just finished making mine. Phew!
The 1/4 staples did not work for me, I ended up getting slightly longer staples.
It was a little hard to connect to the wall..but with a lot of duck tape, and playing around, it is up!
Looks cute!

prashant said...

They are beyond gorgeous and look very high end!

Work from home India

Anonymous said...

I have done 3 Pelmet Boxes and all of them turned out very well. I'm so excited of showing them to my family that is visiting us for Christmas.
Thanks for the instructions!!

kanishk said...

I think my fav part of the room is the yellow mirror. Or the window treatments. Or the headboards. Or the nightstand.

Wagyu Steaks

Stephanie said...

I love these!!! And I adore your blog - you're so talented.

Quick question about the pelmet boxes... would they work on a really wide (59") window? I would love to do these in my living room, but I'm wondering if I'd need some sort of extra support for something that wide.

Thanks!

aimeewrites said...

Jenny, I finally did a pelmet box for my boys' room today! Thanks so much for the inspiration. (And now, comparing your photos to mine, I am SO jealous of the natural light in your home...)

Anonymous said...

I saw the same episode of Rachel Ray that the original commenter mentioned and have thought about it on occasion since then. The segment isn't on the show's web site, but Google brought me to you :)

I noticed recent comments about a longer one - that's my plan too: 12 feet! I'll probably put brackets up every two feet or so to keep it from sagging/support it since it's only held together with duct tape. But I'm hoping other that that adjustment, it'll work just fine.

I tested the project on a smaller scale in my "office" first. I went for straight lines - it's just more my style (and I figured easier). Here's the public link to the final product of the test run: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=31208245&l=2cecb09bf3&id=123701161

If anyone is wondering, supplies for this were less than $25. I'm still unclear on how you hung this, but I made mine with a top piece, so I just used 2.5 inch corner braces as "hanging brackets".

Yay! Thanks for the step-by-step instructions -- it really helped give me the confidence to try it, and I love the end result!

Jennifer said...

This tutorial was wonderful! I was looking for something to do to finish off my windows and this was perfect! I used Micheals velcro hangers so it was removable since I live in an apartment, but love the idea of using foam board.
I linked your blog and pelmet post here, http://2catsandarental.blogspot.com/2010/02/diy-pelmet-boxes.html

Thank you for the inspiration!

julie said...

those look amazing! Thank you, posted a link on my blog for a future to do project.
Thanks

www.craftyjules.com

Maddie said...

Hi! I want to make a pelmet box with a canopy beneath, but I'm having a hard time finding inspiration photos. Have you seen anything like this?

Here's an example:
http://xoxodecoratewithlove.blogspot.com/2010/03/dream-guest-bedroom.html

It looks pretty straightforward, but I would love to see more images that also include a headboard. I know that Sara Gilbane has done a couple.

Anonymous said...

What a great idea; super simple and super chic!

For those interested [especially renters] check out COMMAND picture hanging strips - "the versatile attaching solution with firm holding power and clean removal. Picture Hanging Strips are easy to apply, easy to remove and leave no nail holes".

Jenny thanks for sharing your gift of imagination and creation...

~Enaid

Anonymous said...

I love this project, and have bought all the supplies I need. But I'm still not clear on how you hung them. Can you help? I'm doing this as the window treatment for my baby girl's room - due next week!
Thanks!

ButterYum said...

Oh my goodness - what a great idea!!!

:)
ButterYum

Becky said...

has anyone tried this with particle board? the reason I want to make it out of wood is to hopefully be able to screw (or attach some how) a roller shade in the box. But I don't know how they attach it to the wall and I"m afraid by pulling down the shade I'll pull down my box and rip some holes in my wall. Any ideas?

javieth said...

This blog is absolutely amazing, i really like the way how it was written. I must to say it catch my attention since the first time that i read this whole information.Wonderful.
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Sabrina said...

Thanks for the great idea about the foam core board. It was so easy to make.

Here is mine: [url=http://a3.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/183818_10150092592025658_549480657_6770473_3850967_n.jpg]HERE[/url]

Hope that works. BTW, I used velcro to hang on the wall since I could't find thick core board. I got heavy duty and they are staying up just fine.

Mimi said...

BRILLIANT!!! Okay - I am just discovering this a few years later because I'm sort of new here but....I can't wait to try this {and the duct tape? - this is something I could really have fun with!} Can't thank you enough for opening this door for me. Very high end looking - I never would have imagined. What a talent you have!

Staci said...

I read your blog regularly. I googled how to make a pelmet box and came upon your diy directions. My husband gave it a shot. I love the finished product. I blogged about it with a link to your blog. Thanks for all your awesome posts!

Sharon said...

thank you so much for sharing this tutorial! I am going to make one .. how thick was your foamboard?

Esther said...

These are great! I'm looking to do these for a kitchen. How do they hold up? I'm thinking that they are exposed to steam in there so... does the foam board hold up well?

Anonymous said...

I am just in love with these for our nursery. Thank you for such a wonderful and easy idea!! I went to Michael's and found the foam core in two thicknesses...how thick was the foam core did you use?

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Lynette @ My Craft Discovery said...

Oh I have been looking around for this tutorial and I finally found it again! Hooray. I think I will be making one of these for my super small craft room window. Thanks for the great tutorial!

Jennifer @ Belclaire House said...

Thank you so much for this tutorial! I made a Miles Redd inspired pelmet box for my son's playroom! http://belclairehouse.blogspot.com/2011/12/edwards-playroom.html I could never have done it without your help!

Jen Barnes said...

I made mine last night and love it! I have no idea how to hang it on the wall now! I'm thinking I should have made a top to hang it on.

Inspire Me Heather said...

Wow, popular post! I've linked this to my pelmet box post too today, for inspiration!

Jen said...

I made mine! They are on my website. Thanks so much for creating this tutorial.

Maria said...

I saw your post ages ago and thought it was ingenious! I finally put some up in my own home. This project is perfect for my lo/no budget style. I linked to your post and blogged about it here: http://nolocomo.wordpress.com/2013/06/24/upcycled-pelmet-boxes/ .

Thanks for sharing your creativity!

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