How to Choose the Best Custom Shades for Your Home?
You can buy cheap shades at any department store, but they come up short in many ways.
One way is literally being too short for your windows. They also tend to fall flat in their appearance.
Custom shades for your home add an upscale look to your rooms. They look refined and seem as if they’re meant to be there because of the perfect fit. You get a consistent look throughout the home because of the seamless installation.
Choosing window treatments can be overwhelming with all of the available options. Even if you decide to use custom shades, you still have several style options to consider. Ordering custom shades is an investment, so you want to ensure you make the right choices.
Keep reading to learn about custom shades and how to choose the right ones for your space.
What Are Custom Shades for Your Home?
Window treatments ideally fit your window perfectly to provide the most coverage and a clean, polished look. If you go with standard shades, you have to buy the option that most closely matches your window size. That can result in gaps along the side of the window treatments that don’t match up perfectly.
Custom shades for your window give you a professional look because they’re made to order based on the specific dimensions of your window. The measurements are taken to 1/8 of an inch. That gives you a snug fit in each of your windows.
They’re not basic shades or blinds that are cut down to size to fit your specs. They’re made just for your windows. That gives you more control over the finished look of the window treatments.
Benefits of Custom Shades
Since they’re made just for your windows based on your measurements, custom shades offer a perfect fit. That eliminates the gaps you sometimes get along the edges of some shades. It gives your window coverings a seamless look and blocks more light along the edges.
Having that perfect fit can improve the energy efficiency of your home. The window treatments are better able to block light, heat, and cold from the outside to keep your home more comfortable.
Instead of cutting down shades to your measurements, custom shades are made from scratch. That means any cords, slats, and other components are perfectly positioned to fit that size of window covering. For blinds that get cut down to size at the store, a slight difference in cuts could make the blind look off-center because of the resulting cord placement.
You also have more control over how the window coverings look. It’s not just the size you can customize. You can pick the materials, colors, and other features you want on your windows.
With off-the-shelf window coverings, you may have difficulty finding matching shades that fit different sized windows in your home. With custom shades, you can pick the same shade for every window in the room. Each one will fit just right, creating a consistent look.
Custom window coverings are often a higher quality than options you can buy off the shelf. That means they look better hanging on your windows, and they’ll likely last longer. You may pay more upfront, but you’ll get more life out of the custom shades.
Types of Shades
One of the biggest decisions you have to make is what type of custom shade you want. Each option has a different look and different benefits. Some are better suited for certain rooms, such as bedrooms where you want privacy.
Comparing the main types of custom shades helps you figure out what to use in each room. Check out the options below.
Roller shades use a simple setup with a cylinder at the top and a large shade wrapped around the cylinder. The material used on the shade is usually either vinyl or fabric and usually comes in different color options. You can pick materials that are sheer, light-filtering, or room darkening to match your preferences.
This option gives you a great deal of control over how much you open it. You simply pull down on the shade to lower it. You can stop the shade at any point, which means you can open it just a little, all the way, or anywhere in between.
The simplicity and subtle design make a roller shade blend in well with your window. They make an ideal base window covering that you can pair with other options for a layered look.
Roller shades are usually one of the most affordable options for custom window coverings. If you’re on a budget, this option can give you the polished look of custom window coverings while keeping your costs lower.
Roman shades give you the look of drapery with the coverage of shades. This type of shade consists of a fabric panel to provide continuous coverage when closed.
When you open the window covering, the Roman shade features folds to create a decorative, polished look. The folds stack on top of each other as you raise the shade, creating an even look. When pulled all the way up, the folded Roman shade resembles a window valance.
These window shades come in different types of fabric to match your light preferences. Sheer fabrics let the light filter into your space and are ideal for living rooms or other spaces where you want to light.
In your bedroom, heavier fabrics or Roman shades with blackout linings are ideal. They give you privacy, and they create a darker sleeping space.
Wood shades use a woven style with thin slats of wood running across them. This option adds a warm, natural, textured look to your space. Wood shades are considered a more casual window covering option.
The woven design lets in light, so choose this option for common areas where you don’t mind brightness. You can find wood shades that have light-filtering or room-darkening liners, which can control the lighting.
Most wood shades use a cord to raise the lower the window covering, but some styles are cordless. These types of shades typically fold up into themselves, creating a stacked look when they’re pulled up completely. You can choose wood shades with built-in valances at the top to hide the shade when it’s open.
Stationary shades fit over small, hard-to-reach windows perfectly. Unlike other shade options, stationary shades don’t open and close. They remain in the closed position all the time.
An example is a shade designed to cover an arched section at the top of a tall window. They cover the window perfectly because they’re sized and shaped to fit the window dimensions.
They’re non-operational and have a headrail to hold them in place. They’re ideal when you want constant privacy or light filtration on a window or when you can’t easily reach the window to open and close the shade. They can also help provide thermal protection to keep outside temperatures from affecting your interior temperatures.
Measuring for Custom Shades
Accurate measurements are essential when ordering custom shades for your windows. Even a small mistake in the measurements makes the custom blinds look off. The measurements are different depending on if you choose an inside or outside mount position for your shades.
Custom shade measurements typically go to the nearest 1/8 inch. Steel measuring tapes offer the greatest accuracy.
When possible, let a professional handle the measurements for you. Using a professional window covering company means you get precise measurements. The custom shade expert knows exactly where and how to take the measurements.
Custom Shade Installation Process
Since they’re made to order, custom shades take time to arrive since the manufacturer has to build them just for you. Your window covering company should give you an accurate timeline of the manufacturing process so you know when to expect your shades.
Professional installation ensures the shades are positioned perfectly. To prepare for the installer, move any furniture or other items away from the window. Remove existing window treatments to speed up the installation process.
The installer attaches the brackets first based on whether you chose an inside or outside mount. The brackets need the perfect placement to hold the shade level and to ensure it fits over the window perfectly with no gaps on either side. A small shift in placement can leave the shades looking off-center or higher on one end.
Next, the installer attaches the headrail of the selected shade to the brackets. Any detachable wands, decorative valances, or other accessories go onto the shade. If you’re layering additional window treatments over the shades, they can go onto the window once the shade is fully installed.