Roman blinds are window blinds made from fabric which is designed to fold into pleats when the blinds are raised. Also known as fabric shades or Roman shades, Roman blinds are popular in a variety of interior design schemes. Many home supply stores carry this product or can order it by request, and for unusually sized or shaped windows, custom Roman blinds can be ordered. Custom products can also include special features such as unique fabrics.
These blinds are constructed by taking a solid fabric panel and mounting slats into the back of it. The slats are connected to cords which will pull the slats together when the blind is raised, forcing the fabric to fold into pleats. Flat Roman blinds lie flat when they are fully lowered, while hobbled Roman blinds are designed with excess fabric so that they overlap when closed. Also known as teardrop Roman blinds, the hobbled design creates a softened pleated effect which can also add to the insulating properties of the blinds when they are closed.
The fabric used for Roman blinds can vary considerably. Textiles like silk, hemp, cotton, and linen are all common, and synthetics may be used as well. These blinds can be fitted to a variety of fixtures, including rods with ornamental finials, allowing people to create a customized look for their blinds.