We love our big living room windows, but we wanted to be able to block the sometimes-blinding setting sun. However, we also wanted to hang the curtains wide enough to maximize our view. Just one problem: our windows are 118″wide, and the longest readily available curtain rods we could find only went to 120″. Lucky for me, I have an observant (and handy) husband. He’d seen metal conduit used as curtain rods, so we decided to investigate that section of the hardware store. Turned out that 10’lengths of 3/4″metal conduit could be had for just $3.99 each. With the help of a hacksaw, a few conduit hangers, and less than an hour of work, we now have a 152.5″curtain rod. It’s a bit industrial, but that’s perfect for us. –Mary T. Read on for photos and instructions!
You will need:
Enough conduit to combine for your desired curtain rod length
A hacksaw to cut excess length from metal conduit (much easier than it may sound)
Conduit connector(s) to join conduit into one rod
Drill to pre-drill holes for screws
Conduit clamps and screws to attach conduit to wall or ceiling (use a stud finder or use anchor screws)
1. Measure your window and decide how long you want your curtain rod to be — Long enough to completely expose the window? Or shorter, so that curtains overlap the window frame?
2. Visit the electrical section of your local hardware store and choose your conduit. We used 3/4″metal as it was substantial enough without being so thick the curtain wouldn’t fit on it. (If you’re using curtain loops or hangers, be sure to know their diameter so you don’t get conduit that’s too thick.) We chose two 10′ lengths of conduit to give us enough length to pull the curtains completely off the windows. We used a hacksaw to cut down each piece to identical lengths.
3. Use a conduit connector to join the two pieces. We chose a very simple version; you’ll find several varieties at the hardware store and you can get a more heavy-industrial look if you’re into that. This particular connector was attached with just a screwdriver.
4. Mark where you want your conduit to connect to your wall or ceiling — we opted to connect to the ceiling for maximum curtain height — and drill holes for your screws. We used anchor screws to add stability.
5. Screw conduit clamps into the pre-drilled holes.
6. Slide in conduit. Slide your curtains onto the conduit. Tighten screws on the conduit clamps. (The above clamp is fitted over the conduit connector in the middle of the rod.)
7. Step back and admire!
Told you we got a lot of late-afternoon sun. (The edges of the windows are exposed on purpose; the curtains are actually plenty wide enough to cover the windows. We just wanted to block the most blinding rays and still let in a little light.)