When installing a drape rod, the main goal is to anchor it securely to actual wood or metal studs behind the sheetrock. A firm or solid mount directly into wood or metal studs will prevent the rod from later being torn from the wall either by the sheer weight of the drape or the forces exerted thereon from opening, closing, or pulling on the drape itself.
Typically, just above each window casing frame is a wood header. This header, when placed behind the sheetrock, can be up to four inches thick and twelve inches high. Around the window casing itself is a wood frame of joined two by fours. Therefore, by mounting your rod out three inches on either side of the window opening, you should mount/screw directly into the frame (behind the sheetrock) that exists around the window.
If you just want your drapes to go four inches below the window opening or just from above the window to the floor, then place your rod four inches above the window. The rod will then be mounted directly into the mounted wooden header. Or, if you want your drape to go from ceiling to floor, mount the rod one inch before the ceiling and out three inches on each side of the window casing.
Each rod should have a bracket attaching it to the wall at both ends of the rod. Additionally, any drape rod that is five foot wider should have at least one center support bracket. For every two feet in width over five feet, add another center bracket to prevent the rod from bowing downward in the middle for example. A five foot wide rod would have one center support, a seven foot rod would have 2 center supports; a nine foot rod would have 3 supports, and so forth.
If for some reason you cannot possibly screw the rod bracket directly into the wooden header or metal stud, be sure to use "toggles". These are available at any hardware store. Toggles expand behind the sheetrock and pull the screw tightly to the surface. They are the next to best thing to using screws secured into wood.
Once the rod is mounted, you may want to secure and set the drop cord. First, set the "cord retainer" on the wall where it should usually hide somewhere behind the drapes and directly below the cord opening in the rod. Second, slip the bottom of the cord loop into the cord retainer that you have just mounted on the wall. Third, pull up any slack in the cord by pulling on the knotted end of the cord by behind the rod and attached to the master carrier/slide. Pull the excess out, cut off any extra cord and re-knot it so the cord is taut/ tight.
Always begin hanging the drapes by placing the first or lead hook on the drape to the lead master carrier (finger like carrier). Next, place a hook/pin in every smaller individual carrier. Push all unused carriers towards the end of the rod. Do not leave any extra unused carriers in between drape hooks. These will stop the drapes from moving smoothly across the rod. Extra carriers or glides should be removed from the end of the rod. Behind the end of the rod, you should find a glide stop mechanism. By pushing this upward, you will be able to remove any unused carriers off of the rod. Additional carriers can be added by following the same procedure if they are needed. Be sure to pin the last pleat to the end brackets that return back to the wall; (i.e. wrap the drape around the end bracket and pin it in the holes provided.
Installing mini-blinds is relatively easy, simple, and straight forward. Ascertain if you are ordering inside or outside mount blinds. There are benefits to both. For instance, an inside mount looks cleaner and averts damage by being recessed within the dimensions of a protective window casing. Outside mounted window blinds clear in obstructions in the window such as handles, but are more susceptible to damage.
Sometimes, the depth of a window casing is so narrow that it does not allow as an inside mount. The consumer must of course, decide for themselves.
A. Inside Mount for Mini-blinds – Place both end brackets flush with the tops of the inside casing so that when closed the surface of the wall is flush with the bracket mounting. The front of the bracket will lift upward so you can slide the mini-blind headrail into it or both sides. Then by pressing this lid back downwards you can snap it into position thereby locking it down so the blind cannot come out. A similar rule applies to blinds for center support as it does to drape rods. That is, beginning at a four foot wide mini-blind add a center support; and an additional center support for each two feet thereafter in width.
B. Outside Mount for Mini-blinds – Many times determining where to mount mini-blinds on the window casing is determined by whether there is molding around the window casing. If no molding exists or it exists but you do not want to mount on it, generally 2" - 5" on each side of the window (for the width) and 1" - 2" above it for the height will suffice. You can also mount it tighter to the frame of the window casing if it looks better.