I have been wanting to get something like these tie up shades from Amazon for a while, but at $45 each they just weren't in the budget. So instead, I decided to make my own for about $2 each.
I found six plain matching curtain panels in a fabric I liked at a thrift store for $5. They were the perfect width, so with a few simple stitches I had some new custom blackout shades. All I did was measure the height of my windows, added two inches and cut. I then took a plastic shower curtain liner (I had an extra one so I didn't have to buy one) and cut it to the same size as the new curtains. I simply sewed the plastic liner to the back of the curtain panels, did a straight hem on the bottom, and made the ties out of a 3rd panel. To keep things even simpler, I made the old bottom hem the new top rod pocket. It was the perfect size for my small rods and saved me a step in the sewing process (as well as some thread).
They turned out great! Our windows are older and drafty, so I wanted something to block the wind and also the light/heat in summer. I only used 3 of the 6 panels, so I plan to make a skirt out of one panel and still have another set to use somewhere in my house or maybe sell on Craigslist for a profit!