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.

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AMSCAN
$8.99

Welcome guests with a dramatic display at the entryway! Our Red Doorway Curtain features long vinyl strands that can also be trimm...ed to frame windows. And it's not just for doors and windows; hang it from the ceiling by the built-in grommets to add shimmering color and texture to a blank wall in your party room! Red Doorway Curtain product details:3ft x 8ftVinyl constructionBuilt-in grommets Size: Standard. Color: Multi. Gender: Unisex. Age Group: Kids. read more

AMSCAN
$8.99

Welcome guests with a dramatic display at the entryway! Our Gold Doorway Curtain features long vinyl strands that can also be trim...med to frame windows. And it's not just for doors and windows; hang it from the ceiling by the built-in grommets to add shimmering color and texture to a blank wall in your party room! Gold Doorway Curtain product details:3ft x 8ftVinyl constructionBuilt-in grommets Size: Standard. Color: Multi. Gender: Unisex. Age Group: Kids. read more

AMSCAN
$8.99

Welcome guests with a dramatic display at the entryway! Our Silver Doorway Curtain features long vinyl strands that can also be tr...immed to frame windows. And it's not just for doors and windows; hang it from the ceiling by the built-in grommets to add shimmering color and texture to a blank wall in your party room! Silver Doorway Curtain product details:3ft x 8ftVinyl constructionBuilt-in grommets Size: Standard. Color: Multi. Gender: Unisex. Age Group: Kids. read more

AMSCAN
$8.99

Welcome guests with a dramatic display at the entryway! Our Iridescent Doorway Curtain features long vinyl strands that can also b...e trimmed to frame windows. And it's not just for doors and windows; hang it from the ceiling by the built-in grommets to add shimmering color and texture to a blank wall in your party room! Iridescent Doorway Curtain product details:3ft x 8ftVinyl constructionBuilt-in grommets Size: Standard. Color: Multi. Gender: Unisex. Age Group: Kids. 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
$88.43

XKQ1331 Features Material: 100pct Polyester Pole pocket with back tabs Weighted hem Dry clean only Blackout Pole pocket with back ...tabs header Product Type: Single panel Pattern: Solid Material: Synthetic Cleaning Method: Dry clean only Dimensions Size... read more

Exclusive Fabrics
$134.49 $121.04

Luxurious and sophisticated, these stunning silk drapes create a timeless style in any room in your home. Made from 100-percent si...lk in a variety of beautiful colors, these curtains are elegant. These silk curtains will add class and beauty to any room... read more

Laura Ashley
$83.99 $75.59

Enhance the look of your home with the Laura Ashley Amberley 4-piece Lined Drape Set. This set features a beautiful floral pattern... that is sure to bring together the look of any space. Includes: Two (2) panels, two (2) tiebacks Dimensions: 84 inches... read more

Half Price Drapes
$57.99 $50.99

XKQ1329 Features Material: 100pct Polyester Pole pocket with back tabs Weighted hem Dry clean only Blackout Product Type: Single p...anel Pattern: Damask Material: Synthetic Cleaning Method: Dry clean only Dimensions Panel Width - Side to Side: 50'' Panel... 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.

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$216.99

This decorative valance features our classic Houndstooth flap with a black band flap. It is layered on a nice red panel with a tex...tured red and black fabric on the back, making this valance reversible. It is finished with an adorable white frog... read more

$30.49 $27.44

Dress your windows in Greek elegance with this printed valance. The attractive M-shaped valance comes in a key-shaped geometric pa...ttern with three color options, black, navy and orange, to match any decorating scheme. This cotton valance is hand... read more

$39.99 $35.99

Bring nature indoors with this shaped valance by Maxwell. This rod pocket valance has a pleasing M-shape along the lower edge and ...a cheerful multi-color foliage pattern over chocolate brown on the front. This window treatment made from polyester and... read more

Saturday Knight LTD
$16.59

Dress up your window to achieve a charming country look with this window valance from the Sophie collection by Saturday Knight Ltd.... Adorned with decorative bows to form a wavy design, this valance adds a romantic chic appeal to any room. The rod pocket... 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
$55.99 $42.00

DiamondCell Light Filtering Cellular Shades from Bali feature a premium cellular fabric that is soft to the touch and reflective o...f Bali's signature style and craftsmanship. These shades offer year-round insulation and privacy, while allowing gently filte read more

Blinds
$108.16 $91.94

Soften up your entryways with Premier Flat Sheer Shades by Blinds.com, featuring flat 2-layer fabrics (sheer and private sections)... that overlap for a modern look. Comes standard with a color-coordinated headrail.During the day, keep your Premium Flat Shee read more

Blinds
$347.49 $312.75

Blinds.com?s Radiance Room Darkening Sheer Shades give your windows a luminous glow in addition to complete privacy. Similar to bl...inds, these window shadings feature soft, translucent fabric vanes suspended between two sheer layers of fabric. When lowered read more

Levolor
$115.99

Levolor?s best-selling Accordia Light Filtering Cellular Shades are stylish money-savers. These shades offer all the designer must...-haves, like single or double cell construction, cold-blocking insulation and a rich palette of Classic, Designer and Textura 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
$137.96 $124.17

Cover your favorite patio door with the warm, sophisticated look of Faux Wood Vertical Blinds. Our Faux Wood Vertical Blinds give ...you the classic appeal of real wood and the easy care of vinyl, all at a reduced price. Choose from a variety of stains and r read more

Levolor
$140.93

Levolor?s 2? Premium Wood Blinds bring the elegance of hand-selected premium hardwood into your home. Offering more than mere func...tion, these blinds promise to be a focal point that adds style and impact to any room. These 2? Premium Wood Blinds come in a read more

Generic
$17.99 $16.07

Add new life to any room in your home with these Ashland Vinyl Roll-Up Blinds. They come in your choice of two-tone patterns to ad...d a contrasting accent. These vinyl blinds are very durable and easy to clean. read more

Bali
$245.29 $183.97

Bali?s 2 1/2? Northern Heights Wood Blinds put the elegant look of shutters into a versatile blind. When open, these 2 1/2? blinds... provide a clearer view to the outdoors and give you the same feel of plantation shutters at a substantially lower price. Mad 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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Shutters By Design
$159.91

SHUT2270 Features Style: Louvered RockBridge collection Perfect for decorative or functional installations Design: Closed louver F...unctional or fixed mounting hardware sets sold separately Made in the USA Material: Composite Wood Style: Louvered Country... read more

Shutters By Design
$318.31

SHUT2270 Features Style: Louvered RockBridge collection Perfect for decorative or functional installations Design: Closed louver F...unctional or fixed mounting hardware sets sold separately Made in the USA Material: Composite Wood Style: Louvered Country... read more

Shutters By Design
$464.43

SHUT2338 Features Perfect for decorative or functional installations Rockbridge collection Functional or fixed mounting hardware s...ets sold separately Made in the USA Country of Manufacture: United States Material: Composite Wood Style: Louvered... read more

Builders Edge, Inc.
$82.92 $50.49

All shutters 15 wide. Durable maintenance-free copolymer construction with molded-through color. No paint to ever scratch or flake.... Designed with a deep wood grain texture for the appearance of wood shutters without the maintenance worries of wood.... 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

Blinds
$137.96 $124.17

Cover your favorite patio door with the warm, sophisticated look of Faux Wood Vertical Blinds. Our Faux Wood Vertical Blinds give ...you the classic appeal of real wood and the easy care of vinyl, all at a reduced price. Choose from a variety of stains and r read more

Bali
$55.99 $42.00

DiamondCell Light Filtering Cellular Shades from Bali feature a premium cellular fabric that is soft to the touch and reflective o...f Bali's signature style and craftsmanship. These shades offer year-round insulation and privacy, while allowing gently filte read more

Blinds
$108.16 $91.94

Soften up your entryways with Premier Flat Sheer Shades by Blinds.com, featuring flat 2-layer fabrics (sheer and private sections)... that overlap for a modern look. Comes standard with a color-coordinated headrail.During the day, keep your Premium Flat Shee read more

Bali
$245.29 $183.97

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

Blinds
$347.49 $312.75

Blinds.com?s Radiance Room Darkening Sheer Shades give your windows a luminous glow in addition to complete privacy. Similar to bl...inds, these window shadings feature soft, translucent fabric vanes suspended between two sheer layers of fabric. When lowered read more

Bali
$394.11 $295.59

Bali Blackout Vertical Cellular Shades put the energy efficiency of cellular shades in a vertically hanging design that offers tot...al light blockage. The side-opening construction makes them ideal for wide windows and patio doors, especially in climates th read more

Blinds
$236.50 $201.03

Blinds.com Signature Light Filtering Vertical Cellular Shades are a beautiful, insulating alternative to drapes for covering large... picture windows and patio doors. Compared to other national brands, these shades offer comparable styling and function for a read more

Blinds
$267.31 $240.58

Blinds.com Signature Blackout Vertical Cellular Shades take the benefits of vertical window treatments to an entirely new level. T...hese shades will not only block harsh sun from your extremely large windows or patio doors, but also provide you with year-ro read more

$30.49 $27.44

Dress your windows in Greek elegance with this printed valance. The attractive M-shaped valance comes in a key-shaped geometric pa...ttern with three color options, black, navy and orange, to match any decorating scheme. This cotton valance is hand... read more

$39.99 $35.99

Bring nature indoors with this shaped valance by Maxwell. This rod pocket valance has a pleasing M-shape along the lower edge and ...a cheerful multi-color foliage pattern over chocolate brown on the front. This window treatment made from polyester and... read more

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