Window Treatments Buying Guide

We want our rooms to be bright and comfortable, but we also need privacy and protection against harsh sunlight and chilly breezes. Well-chosen window treatments control the light and view, and they can help minimize a room's flaws or maximize its charms.

Types of Window Treatments

Types of Window Treatments

Window treatments have evolved into today's variety to meet different needs. Soft treatments, such as shades and curtains or draperies, enhance a room's decor through the color, pattern, and texture available in thousands of fabrics. Assembling the final look is a bit like putting together an outfit. "Hard" treatments -- blinds and shutters -- incorporate fewer decorative options, but they can filter or block out light and keep heat in or out. Install them solo, or top them with fabric for versatile combinations that offer the best of both worlds.

Curtains

Curtain panels are casual, usually made from unlined lightweight fabric, and often hang only to the window's sill or apron. Panels hang in a variety of ways. With rod-pocket panels, a simple curtain rod slips through a channel sewn along the panel's top edge; a pocket sewn a few inches below the top edge suggests a ruffled effect. You can also attach clips or sew decorative rings along the panel top. Or choose a grommet-design curtain and run the rod through the built-in rings. With loops of curtain fabric sewn to the back of the top edge, tab-top panels hang relatively flat, making them ideal for showcasing large-scale prints. Curtains are generally opened and closed by hand.

shop Curtains
Exclusive Fabrics
$71.09 $60.43

Accent your home with this beautifully simple curtain panel. Made with soft, thick velvet and blackout lining, the curtain provide...s insulation to help lower your utility costs. The blackout lining blocks harsh light, making this curtain perfect for... read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$13.71 $10.97

Better Homes and Gardens Tapestry Sheer Curtain Panel:This Better Homes and Gardens Sheer Curtain Panel has a beautiful printed mo...dern scroll patternRod pocket panel can hang 2 ways: with a rod pocket or clip-on ringsFeatures easy care fabric, so beautiful scroll pattern can always look freshCreates a sweet splash of color in your homeIdeal choice for privacy and style read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$13.97 $11.97

This Better Homes and Gardens Crushed Room Darkening Curtain Panel will provide extremely filtered light in your room. It is also ...designed to add an elegant touch to your home decor. It is made from 100-percent polyester material. The Better Homes and Gardens curtain panel features a subtle crushed texture and grommets that allow for easy hanging or taking down for cleaning. Available in a variety of colors, this polyester panel helps block out the sun's rays. Pair this curtain panel with coordinating Better Homes and Gardens accessories (sold separately) for a complete and matching look. It is also available in different sizes so you can find the ideal fit for your window. read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$15.97 $12.97

This Better Homes and Gardens Crushed Room Darkening Curtain Panel will provide extremely filtered light in your room. It is also ...designed to add an elegant touch to your home decor. It is made from 100-percent polyester material. The Better Homes and Gardens curtain panel features a subtle crushed texture and grommets that allow for easy hanging or taking down for cleaning. Available in a variety of colors, this polyester panel helps block out the sun's rays. Pair this curtain panel with coordinating Better Homes and Gardens accessories (sold separately) for a complete and matching look. It is also available in different sizes so you can find the ideal fit for your window. read more

Draperies

More traditional in feeling, draperies typically are lined, are made from heavier materials, and hang all the way to the floor. In living rooms and other formal spaces, this flowing design looks elegant. Another difference: Draperies are opened and closed by pulling cords attached with pulleys to a traverse rod, which uses a series of hooks sewn behind decorative pleats along the top of each panel. Among the variations, classic pinch pleats feature equally spaced stitched folds; pencil pleats are narrow and tight; and elaborate goblet pleats use stiffening paper above the pinch to form a wineglass shape.

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Half Price Drapes
$30.99

For updated, accurate country of origin data, it is recommended that you rely on product packaging or manufacturer information. Fe...atures: -Material: 100pct Polyester. -Pole pocket with back tabs. -Awning collection. -Weighted hem. -Dry clean only.... read more

Half Price Drapes
$63.99

For updated, accurate country of origin data, it is recommended that you rely on product packaging or manufacturer information. Fe...atures: -Material: Poly velvet face fabric. -Weighted hem. -Dry clean only. -Blackout. -Signature collection. -100pct... read more

Trend Lab
$41.82

Add the finishing touch to your nursery with the Tres Chic Window Drape Panel from Waverly Baby by Trend Lab. Panel measures 42 in... x 84 in and features Waverly's Tres Chic motif print which includes the Eiffel tower, iconic high fashion sketch work and... read more

Half Price Drapes
$31.99

For updated, accurate country of origin data, it is recommended that you rely on product packaging or manufacturer information. Fe...atures: Product Type: -Single panel. Pattern: -Solid. Material: -Synthetic. Cleaning Method: -Dry clean only. -Sold per... read more

Valances

Used on its own for simplicity or in conjunction with another treatment as a decorative accent, a valance is draped or hung only across the top of a window. Your fabric choice and installation method will determine the valance's style and the mood it conveys.

shop Valances
Better Homes and Gardens
$11.87 $10.97

Better Homes and Gardens Roses Waterfall Valance:Uses rod pocket and has a macramédecorative trim detail along the bottom for adde...d touch of elegance100% polyester, making it durable and long lastingBetter Homes and Gardens Waterfall Valance adds a style to your room decorWindow panel combines with textured yarns to create a vertical stripe on sheer fabric read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$10.97

Better Homes and Gardens Multiple Colors Kokopelli Valance Tiers (Set of 2) or Valance:Authentic Southwestern pattern great for ki...tchens, dens and ground floor windowsTextured machine washable Polyester fabric lets in filtered sunlightRod pocket contains a fabric liningValance dimensions: 60"W x 14" (152.4 cm x 35.56 cm)tier dimensions: 30"W x 24"L (76.2 cm x 60.96 cm) or 30"W x 36"L (76.2 cm x 91.44 cm) read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$10.97

Better Homes and Gardens Brown Cabin Quilt Valance Tiers (Set of 2) or Valance:Rustic wildlife motif great for lodge decorTextured... machine washable Polyester fabric lets in filtered sunlightRod pocket contains a fabric liningValance dimensions: 60"W x 14" (152.4 cm x 35.56 cm); tier dimensions: 30"W x 24"L (76.2 cm x 60.96 cm) or 30"W x 36"L (76.2 cm x 91.44 cm) read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$10.87 $8.97

Spruce up your kitchen or breakfast nook's style with the Better Homes and Gardens Red Check Tiers or Valance, which can instantly... make your space look bright and cheery with its vibrant print. These curtains sport a checked pattern that is complemented by rich and deep colors to make them look beautiful and cozy. These kitchen window tiers are lightweight and can be easily opened and closed. The fabric is thin enough to allow just the right amount of sunlight inside while still offering privacy. When you match this window valance with the corresponding tier set, it gives your windows a complete and fresh look. The tier set is sold separately. read more

Shades

Shades are available in several styles that operate up and down rather than side to side. Roller shades range from translucent paper to light-blocking vinyl or bonded fabric. Tie-up shades are held open by fabric ties. Balloon and Austrian shades are shirred and gathered to create volume and romantic drama. The fabric in tailored Roman shades forms horizontal folds when raised. Pleated and cellular shades use paper or fabric in accordion- or honeycomb-shape construction to boost privacy and insulation with minimal bulk.

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Bali
$183.99 $147.20

Create some shade and cool off your patio with the Outdoor Solar Shade by Bali, designed to lower your air conditioning bills by b...locking damaging UV radiation and reducing solar heat gain. Select your desired privacy level with 5-10% open weaves... read more

Bali
$394.99 $316.00

Bali? VertiCell? Blackout Cell Shades put the energy efficiency of cellular shades in a vertically hanging design that offers tota...l light blockage. The side-opening construction makes them ideal for wide windows and patio doors, especially in climates... read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$13.27 $12.52

Better Homes and Gardens Black Burlap Tapered Drum Shade:Uno fitter (No harp required)Size: 11" x 13" x 9" (27.94cm x 33.02cm x 22....86cm)Round black Burlap hardback shade read more

Bali
$60.99 $48.80

Known for their simplicity and versatility, Bali Light Filtering Roller Shades are perfect for those who want a stylish window tre...atment that lets filtered light shine through. These roller shades are available in varied opacities, all of which block... read more

Blinds

Made with metal, wood, or plastic slats and in a variety of widths, horizontal blinds excel at providing privacy and managing incoming light. Stiffened-fabric or vinyl vertical blinds bring these qualities to patio doors.

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Blinds
$74.99 $60.00

2 1/2-inch Light Filtering Fabric Blind from Blinds.com dresses your windows with the elegance of soft shades, while providing the... convenience of blinds. Unlike wood, faux wood, or mini blinds that block all light, sunlight filters through these blinds... read more

Bali
$122.99 $98.40

Perfect for top-angled or sloping, cathedral-like windows and sliding glass doors, Angle Top Vertical Blinds by Bali present a cle...an visual line through a combination of a contemporary square-corner valance and dust cover. Featuring strong and durable... read more

Blinds
$116.99 $93.60

2'' Light Filtering Fabric Blinds from Blinds.com give you a soft and sophisticated fabric look with the functionality of a blind.... Unlike traditional wood, faux wood, or mini blinds that block or reflect light, these blinds allow sunlight to filter... read more

Blinds
$132.99 $106.40

The Blinds.com Signature S-Shaped Vinyl Vertical Blinds offer the soft look of a modern drapery for your patio door, but with more... refined light control. The S-shaped construction of these vertical blinds allows for a tighter closure in your window,... read more

Shutters

Perhaps the most permanent window treatment, wood or faux-wood shutters use louvered panels to screen a view and create architectural impact. A range of louver widths allows shutters to complement different home styles.

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Handy Home Products
$34.99

These Large Window Shutters (2-Pack) add charm and distinction to your storage building. These shutters are constructed of vinyl a...nd provide durable weather resistance and a paintable finish. Each Shutter measures 9"W x 30.25"H. read more

Insteon
$41.05

Want to add wireless remote control to your automated window shutters, blinds and projector screens? Insteon makes it easy. Micro ...Open/Close Module is the first Insteon device designed specifically for up/down and open/close motor-controlled... read more

Perfect Shutters
$77.99

The Perfect Shutters 14.5W in. Louvered Straight Top Vinyl Shutters offer charming, traditional character to modern homes. These a...ffordable exterior shutters enhance a home's curb appeal and overall value and they're built to last for years to come!... read more

Perfect Shutters
$174.99

The Perfect Shutters 14.5W in. Louvered Straight Top Vinyl Shutters offer charming, traditional character to modern homes. These a...ffordable exterior shutters enhance a home's curb appeal and overall value and they're built to last for years to come!... read more

Product Features

Product Features

The window-treatments market includes such a broad range of products, it's tricky to single out design elements specific to each category. However, all treatments share general characteristics that come into play as you narrow your choices.

Size and Fit

Because function is equal to fashion in this product category, window treatments can be purchased off-the-shelf or in custom sizes to fit any window.

Style

Whatever look you're after, you can find a treatment to achieve it. Soft coverings such as curtains and draperies offer the most variation in color and pattern. Blinds, shades, and shutters allow you to express your taste in finish, texture, and scale.

Safety

Curtains, draperies, shades, and blinds now offer manual or automated cordless operation for homes with young children. This feature is also ideal for windows and skylights that are difficult to reach.

Purchase Considerations

Purchase Considerations

The process of shopping for window treatments involves decisions related to both how they look and how they work. Think about what each treatment can do to make your rooms more attractive and your daily life more comfortable. Keep in mind that you may be living with these treatments for several years -- especially if they're custom-made.

Window Location

Consider the time of day you use the room and the direction the window faces. Southern and western exposures call for treatments such as blinds or shutters designed to control afternoon sunshine; if you hang curtains or draperies, be sure they are lined or the fabric is fade-resistant. North- and east-facing windows, however, are better served by light-filtering curtains or shades. If privacy is your top consideration, look for blackout shades or curtains, or plan to layer window coverings for design flexibility. For kitchen windows, choose simple treatments of synthetic and washable fabrics instead of heavy, dry-clean-only curtains. Other good cooking-zone options are cafe shutters and metal blinds, because both are easy to clean. In humidity-prone bathrooms, PVC or faux-wood blinds provide privacy without warping.

Window Hardware

If your windows are already equipped with curtain poles, traverse rods, or shade hardware, you'll save trouble and money by installing treatments of the same type as what was there before. Traverse rods that operate smoothly can be reused -- they won't show behind your new draperies. If you like the style but not the finish of existing poles, it's possible to paint them.

Window Hardware

If your windows are already equipped with curtain poles, traverse rods, or shade hardware, you'll save trouble and money by installing treatments of the same type as what was there before. Traverse rods that operate smoothly can be reused -- they won't show behind your new draperies. If you like the style but not the finish of existing poles, it's possible to paint them.

Window Size & Shape

In new-construction homes, windows are often standard sizes that make it easy to find ready-made window treatments. Older homes with bay or bow windows or nonstandard-size windows may require custom treatments, which are worth their higher cost for the professionally finished look. To emphasize unusual shapes and architectural millwork, consider a top treatment only, or mount curtains or shades inside the window frame. You can also install window hardware to make a small or narrow window look larger or wider.

Decorating Style

Let historical influences and your personal taste suggest what type of window treatment best fits the style you have in mind. (See our buying guides on Curtains & Drapes, Valances, Shades, and Blinds & Shutters for suggestions.) Choose a practical length -- to the sill, the apron, or the floor. Select cotton, linen, tweed, ticking, or a similar fabric for casual decor; choose silk, taffeta, toile, lace, or velvet for formal settings. Shades, blinds, and shutters are all adaptable to various styles, depending on finish and details.

Privacy & Insulation

As a rule, the thicker or darker the treatment -- or the more layers it involves -- the more privacy and energy efficiency it will provide. Look for interlining, blackout, or thermal curtains and shades as ready-made solutions.

Decor on sale

Exclusive Fabrics
$71.09 $60.43

Accent your home with this beautifully simple curtain panel. Made with soft, thick velvet and blackout lining, the curtain provide...s insulation to help lower your utility costs. The blackout lining blocks harsh light, making this curtain perfect for... read more

Bali
$183.99 $147.20

Create some shade and cool off your patio with the Outdoor Solar Shade by Bali, designed to lower your air conditioning bills by b...locking damaging UV radiation and reducing solar heat gain. Select your desired privacy level with 5-10% open weaves... read more

Bali
$95.99 $76.80

Get durable, low maintenance style with 2-inch Vinyl Blinds by Bali, designed to resist moisture, warping, chipping and peeling-pe...rfect for high-humidity rooms like bathrooms and garages. Featuring easy-to-clean gloss alabaster and gloss white... read more

Bali
$245.99 $196.80

Bali's 2 1/2-inch Northern Heights Wood Blinds put the elegant look of shutters into a versatile blind. When open, these 2 1/2-inc...h blinds provide a clearer view to the outdoors and give you the same feel of plantation shutters at a substantially lower... read more

Bali
$394.99 $316.00

Bali? VertiCell? Blackout Cell Shades put the energy efficiency of cellular shades in a vertically hanging design that offers tota...l light blockage. The side-opening construction makes them ideal for wide windows and patio doors, especially in climates... read more

Blinds
$63.48 $50.79

The Blinds.com 1-inch Cordless Mini Blind is a truly unique aluminum blind that provides a chic, cordless look for your windows. I...nstead of cords, the lifting and tilting of this blind is operated cordlessly, which makes for a clean and unobstructed... read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$13.71 $10.97

Better Homes and Gardens Tapestry Sheer Curtain Panel:This Better Homes and Gardens Sheer Curtain Panel has a beautiful printed mo...dern scroll patternRod pocket panel can hang 2 ways: with a rod pocket or clip-on ringsFeatures easy care fabric, so beautiful scroll pattern can always look freshCreates a sweet splash of color in your homeIdeal choice for privacy and style read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$11.87 $10.97

Better Homes and Gardens Roses Waterfall Valance:Uses rod pocket and has a macramédecorative trim detail along the bottom for adde...d touch of elegance100% polyester, making it durable and long lastingBetter Homes and Gardens Waterfall Valance adds a style to your room decorWindow panel combines with textured yarns to create a vertical stripe on sheer fabric read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$13.97 $11.97

This Better Homes and Gardens Crushed Room Darkening Curtain Panel will provide extremely filtered light in your room. It is also ...designed to add an elegant touch to your home decor. It is made from 100-percent polyester material. The Better Homes and Gardens curtain panel features a subtle crushed texture and grommets that allow for easy hanging or taking down for cleaning. Available in a variety of colors, this polyester panel helps block out the sun's rays. Pair this curtain panel with coordinating Better Homes and Gardens accessories (sold separately) for a complete and matching look. It is also available in different sizes so you can find the ideal fit for your window. read more

Better Homes and Gardens
$15.97 $12.97

This Better Homes and Gardens Crushed Room Darkening Curtain Panel will provide extremely filtered light in your room. It is also ...designed to add an elegant touch to your home decor. It is made from 100-percent polyester material. The Better Homes and Gardens curtain panel features a subtle crushed texture and grommets that allow for easy hanging or taking down for cleaning. Available in a variety of colors, this polyester panel helps block out the sun's rays. Pair this curtain panel with coordinating Better Homes and Gardens accessories (sold separately) for a complete and matching look. It is also available in different sizes so you can find the ideal fit for your window. read more

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