If you’re looking for an inexpensive way to spruce up the interior of your home, and possibly add more value to it while you’re at it, window treatments are some of your best options. If you choose the right aesthetics, you can breathe new life into any room, and you can install something new on practically any budget.
However, before you make a purchase, there are a few things you should keep in mind—and some steps to take before you start shopping.
Before you get too far in the decision-making process, you should know what a “window treatment” is, exactly, and be familiar with some of the terminology. That way, you can have a clear conversation with window treatment experts you encounter and improve your chances of making the right decision.
There are three main categories of window treatments to keep in mind:
- Typically made from wood, plastic, or metal, these thin slats can be horizontal or vertical, and can be adjusted to let more or less light in at any time.
- Made from canvas, cotton, woven bamboo, or some other kind of textile, shades can be roller style or Roman style.
- Drapery and curtains are mostly interchangeable terms. There are hundreds of varieties of drapes, and you’ll need to know which variables are most important, including folds, rods, pleats, and valances.
Next, you should get accurate measurements of all your windows, so you can choose the right options for each of them. It’s vital to measure accurately; otherwise, your window treatments may be too big or too small for your windows, throwing off your style entirely. Keep in mind that you may not want to get window treatments that fit your windows exactly, however; you may want to get drapes that are taller and wider than your window frames, to give your room a more spacious feel.
Prepare a Budget
Once you’ve got your measurements, it will be time to work up a budget. It’s possible to get new window treatments for a low price, but remember—you get what you pay for. Higher-priced window treatments tend to be more aesthetically pleasing, more functional, and above all, they come with a longer lifespan. If you don’t have much money to work with, consider getting high-quality window treatment upgrades for a few rooms of your house, rather than applying a budget fix to your entire house.
Decide on Your Goals
While you’re working up a budget, or shortly thereafter, decide what your main goals should be. You can focus on one of the following, or a combination of the following:
- Some window treatments are better than others at controlling the lighting in a given room. If you want as many options as possible, blinds that can be gradually adjusted can give you a wide range of lighting possibilities. If you’re looking to block out as much light as possible, blackout curtains are a better bet. Of course, if lighting isn’t a priority, you can focus on another goal when redecorating your home.
- Each type of window treatment is going to add a layer of aesthetics to your chosen room. This choice is almost entirely subjective; your choice in window treatment types, the variables for each window treatment, and options like colors and materials will have a massive impact on the look and feel of each room of your home. For some homeowners, this is a make-or-break factor.
- You should also consider the longevity of the window treatments you’re getting. You can choose a style that’s trendy right now, but you might not be happy with that choice in a few years when it falls out of fashion. You can also choose window treatments made from the best-quality materials, so you can be confident they’ll last for years to come.
Once you have some options in mind, it’s a good idea to shop around to different providers. If you’re visiting local shops, you’ll be able to see your window treatment options on display. If you’re shopping online, you’ll be able to order free samples so you can see and feel what your window treatments will be like before buying. Take your time evaluating your options, and make sure to compare prices between different providers so you can get the best deal.
Window treatments are a big decision, and one that could dramatically change how you see the interior of your home. Make sure you spend time researching every variable available to you, and don’t settle until you’ve found the treatments that meet or exceed your goals. It may take some extra time, but you’ll be far more satisfied once the treatments are up and functional.