30 Apr DIY Tutorial: Acrylic/Lucite Drapery Rods With Plumbing Hardware
**Thank you so much for all of the kind comments on my Home Depot Style Challenge reveal yesterday! If you are new here, welcome! Would you like to receive my daily post in your inbox? Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box in the sidebar.**
I have always loved outdoor drapery. There’s just something about seeing the fabric move in the breeze that instantly relaxes me. When Home Depot told me about their project, I knew I had to incorporate outdoor curtains somehow, and I felt a revamp of my DIY Acrylic Rods coming on.
It may be weird, but I love walking around home improvement stores. I really enjoy looking around and thinking of new ways to use regular items. Regular items like galvanized steel plumbing pipe.
With a few galvanized steel plumbing components, you can create really nice looking hardware for your curtains! Note: Home Depot also sells a black version of the galvanized steel plumbing pieces, but make sure you only get the silver. The black is covered in oil, and the paint will not adhere as well if you are painting or spraying them. To make one rod, all you need are two 90 degree elbows, one tee, three nipples (buy the smallest length you can, which at my store, was two inches I think), and three floor flanges. If you have a rod less than four feet, you may not need the center support, so you could take out step two in the drawing below.
To begin making your hardware, screw the nipple to the floor flange. Tip: Use gloves for this part of the project, my hands had little cuts on them for a couple of weeks after screwing these on.
Then attach your elbow making sure your nipple is screwed as far into the 90 degree elbow and floor flange as possible.
Repeat these steps again for the other elbow and once for the tee.
Paint adheres really well to these steel parts so no need to prime. I wanted a shiny deep brass look for this project so I used the metallic Rustoleum spray paint.
It took me a little less than two cans to make sure all of the parts had good coverage. I sprayed each of them lightly three times.
Make sure you get the inside of the opening where the rod goes in since that will be seen.
I used an inch and a quarter rods from my buddy Kip (all of the information on ordering acrylic rods is in this post), and I used an inch and a quarter steel plumbing parts from Home Depot. Since the rod is a bit narrower than the plumbing pieces, I put one layer of rubber tape around the end of each rod and where my tee was going to go for support. Doing this helped the rod fit more securely inside the elbows and the tee.
I picked up these brass wood screws to mount my rods. They look great against the gold paint!
It’s a good idea to pre-drill your holes for this project (don’t drill too deep, just enough to get the screw started). We installed the rods assembled, meaning we placed the rod in one of the elbows, inserted it through the support tee, and into the other elbow. After we had everything together, we lifted the whole rod and screwed it into the wood.
And voila, it looks beautiful! Inside or out, acrylic rods are sparkly and beautiful.
I frequently get asked about what to do if you need a rod over eight feet (the longest the acrylic comes is eight feet). I think this project is a great way to connect two rods since the support is so strong and wide. For example, if you need a ten foot rod, get Kip to cut you two five feet lengths, wrap rubber tape around the seam, insert the acrylic into the support, and install.
This project looks sooooo much more expensive than it actually is, and I have had several people ask me where I bought my “expensive brass hardware”. Boom! Music to this little blogger’s ears.
I’m loving this look and just bought all of the pieces to change up my entryway curtain hardware. I will be joining rods here since I need 20 feet so stay tuned!
Come back tomorrow for my hand stamped fabric tutorial!