Why on earth would anyone spend hundreds, maybe thousands of dollars on custom drapery when window treatments can be purchased already made?
After all, who would know the difference?
Once you understand what you are purchasing and once you have seen custom window treatments, you will begin to recognize the difference.
Cost is typically the issue that sends a homeowner running for drapery sold at a bedding or home store. While the pre-fabs can, at first blush, seem lighter on the wallet, it is not always the case when all factors are considered. While custom will not be for everyone, an awareness of the whole picture will help determine which avenue is best.
Quality of workmanship and the variety of fabrics available for custom makes that option a clear cut winner. The textiles, trims, combinations and styling that are available in custom drapery are limited only by imagination. Accessing the abundance of fabric allows a homeowner to coordinate with the room thus creating an overall look that is pulled together. If these are important factors, ready-made is out of the question.
Custom window treatments are a clear cut loser when it comes to timing. Custom can require as much as four to eight weeks for fabrication while immediate gratification makes ready-made a winner.
Ready-made window treatments are the underdog when it comes to lining. If it is lined, the lining is typically poor quality. Custom drapery is always lined (unless a specific design specs no lining) with a UV protective lining. Quality lining gives drapery treatments greater body and extends the life of the investment in drapery fabric. Interlining is often added to provide a rich, full appearance. This interlining, also, provides insulation and has a beneficial impact on heating and cooling bills.
Ready-made typically comes in single-width panels. If you wish to cover a larger window, you will need multiple panels and they will not be attached to each other. At the end of the day, you may spend just as much on a collection of single panels as you would on a custom window treatment that is made specifically for your window’s width, length, projection, and obstructions.
If the fabrics have a pattern, the pattern will most likely not appear in the same location on each panel in ready-made. Custom is just that – custom, so no matter what width you need, your panels will be sewn together and patterns will not be interrupted or broken.
Ready-made are notorious for coming in short on length. A window that is shrouded by drapery that fall a few inches short would be better off without any window treatment at all.
The winner and loser between custom and ready-made really has to be determined by the total picture of client situation and needs rather than the impression of cost savings.