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How to Install Bottom Up Roller Shades

Sienna Condy

If you could use a little more privacy and you like the look of roller shades, install roller shades on your window bottoms up. Bottoms up or top down roller shades, as they're sometimes called, are roller shades that are installed with the roller at the bottom of the window.

The shade itself is then pulled up to cover the window, instead of pulled down. Bottoms up roller shades are basically the same as regular roller shades, but on a bottoms up shade, the locking mechanism has been disabled, so the shade doesn't catch at certain points as you pull it across the window like a traditional roller shade would.

  1. Ask the home improvement store or company where you purchase the shade to disable or turn off the locking mechanism. Explain to the store that you want to install your shades bottoms up.

  2. Measure the space between the window and where you plan to install your bottoms up roller shade. Make sure there will be enough space for the shade to work once it's installed.

  3. Place the mounting bracket for the shade against the windowsill. Use a level to make sure the bracket is level and straight. Do not put the bracket too far out from the window or your shade will balloon out when you unroll it.

  4. Position the bracket where you want it to go. Drill holes through each of the holes in the mounting bracket into your windowsill. Screw the mounting bracket to the sill with the screws provided with the shade.

  5. Maneuver the shade into the mounting bracket or brackets per the manufacturer's instructions. Slide the mounting bracket covers into place, if applicable.

  6. Create a mechanism to hold your roller shades closed. Place a simple nail in the window frame, or get more elaborate. Install two equidistant rings on the bottom of the roller shade. Install two small pulleys at the top. Tie a piece of ribbon or cord around each ring. Run each cord attached to a ring through the corresponding pulley above it. The cord will work as a basic roller mechanism, allowing you to raise your roller shades up the window.

  7. Tip

    In some cases, the mounting bracket is two separate small pieces. If this is the case, measure the length of your roller shade. Divide the length by two. Measure your windowsill from one edge of the window to the other. Divide the measurement in two. Measure from the edge to the middle of the windowsill using the measurement you obtained. Mark the spot with a pencil. Measure from the pencil mark out half the length of the roller shade. Repeat the process on the other side. This is where your brackets should go.