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The Ultimate Guide to Window Treatments

Everything you need to know about the 11 most popular options

Domino

There’s a reason “great natural light” is such a selling point in, oh, every real estate listing ever. After all, light (and the windows that let it in) is really all that separates a happy home from a cave-lady dungeon.

But how best to dress your beloved windows? That’s where we come in.

Check out our list of classic window treatment options to see which is best for your fabulous space.

1.

Venetian Blinds   

Pros: Practical, affordable and fully customizable as to light preference.

Cons: Unless you really dress them up, these guys look sterile. Plus, the cheaper varieties are prone to chipping and breakage.

2.

Roman Shades   

Pros: Easy to open and close, elongating for windows and cozier than other shade/blind options.

Cons: String mechanisms can break and get tangled easily. (No one likes a lopsided blind.)

3.

Valances  

Pros: They function as a picture frame for your windows--and give any room a classy and elegant flair.

Cons: Tough to clean, $$$, plus they’re a lot more work to fit and install than hanging up a simple curtain rod.

4.

Swags

Pros: Super sweet to look at, and they let in tons of light.

Cons: They have pretty much zero actual functionality aside from cuteness.

5.

Curtains on Rings     

Pros: Easy to install, tons of varieties to choose from and they lend a catalog-like polish.

Cons: All that fabric is a major dust trap--which means they need more frequent, often professional, cleanings.

6.

Grommet Curtains

Pros: They add a real softness, fullness and casual elegance to a room. Plus, they’re great for insulation and noise control.

Cons: Two words: cash money. Also, like ringed panels, these babies need full cleanings every few months.

7.

Sheer Panels   

Pros: Breezy, bright and generally more affordable than solid cloth.

Cons: Not so private, not so insulating, tricky to launder.

8.

Cellular Shades

Pros: The cells trap heat, keeping things warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Essentially, they’re a super-practical option with a softer look than regular blinds.

Cons: Aside from dusting, they’re a bit tough to clean. They’re also not the prettiest option.

9.

Roller Shades   

Pros: Cheap and low maintenance with a crisp, minimal aesthetic.

Cons: They’re not especially showstopping and need to be replaced more often than other blinds, due to their mechanisms wearing out.

10.

Shutters   

Pros: Long life spans, great for the privacy-minded and very durable.

Cons: They can make a room feel dark and heavy, and their clunky volume isn’t awesome for small spaces.

11.

Bare Windows

Pros: Tons of light and the illusion of more space.

Cons: Good luck sleeping in past sunrise.