Finally: Custom Window Covers that Look Good and Won’t Break the Bank

Interiors & Decor

Sometimes a design request comes through my inbox (or comment section) that I’m unable to answer. For example, many people ask me how we keep our home free of toddler clutter (we don’t) and how to keep our couch free of scratches (again, we just roll with it). I myself turn to the internet to solve decor problems of my own, like how to buff those scratches out of my leather couch (hello, coconut oil) and what to do about finding customizable window coverings that aren’t intimidating – both from a budget and experience standpoint. What I didn’t realize was how insanely expensive high-quality, custom curtains and shades are these days. I kid you not, I recently learned that traditionally, custom shades are marked up 250% by the time it reaches the consumer.

While I had hung curtains, they were a bit awkward looking because the windows in our “charming” old home were not standard size and width. So, for a long time, the only answer I found was to break out the sewing machine and alter options from IKEA or other big-box retailers. Knowing my sewing skills couldn’t live up to that challenge, I had resorted to nailing blankets to the walls after Birdie was born, to avoid dropping five figures on the roman shades I had lusted after. I resigned to leaving our windows open and free from window dressings because, well, we just couldn’t afford it. So, until now I just sort of gave up on finding the right shades.
I’m happy to report to you all, and to the handful of readers who have asked what to do about finding easy, custom options for drapes and shades, I now have a great answer for you: Barn & Willow.
I first stumbled upon Barn & Willow on Instagram. Unlike traditional retailers in their market, Barn & Willow sells exclusively online, removing unnecessary overhead costs. Their high-quality custom drapes, curtains, and roman shades are designed in-house working directly with manufacturers, simultaneously skipping over the middleman. This was appealing to me, so I quickly signed on to order myself a couple of fabric samples and sat on making a decision for a while. Turns out, even after you find the perfect resource, selecting the ideal window covering is much more than just how they look.
Having small children, I was juggling a few factors:
  1. Lighting – As a bright-light fanatic, the abundance of light in our home was a lead selling point when we first toured. Now that we have two little ones, who function on an atypical sleep schedule, Joe and I have had to begin exploring alternative window coverings that keep the sun from shining in on even the sunniest of days.
  2. Safety – August recently reached the “get into anything and everything” stage, turning Joe and I into a full-blown accident-prevention committee. So when we make major design decisions, we have to be conscientious of the August risk-factor. Super inconvenient, but super real.
  3. Privacy – TBH, I probably should have taken this factor more seriously long ago considering I’ve been exposing myself on a nightly basis… Hellooo St. Paul! But I don’t think I had the willpower to say no to the beautiful gauzy curtains that once covered our living room windows.
With the kiddos needs in mind, it was clear it was time get coverings installed. All I had to do was select the style (roman shade, yay!), the amount of light I wanted to come through, the fabric, and include my measurements. After all the mental energy I had put into planning before I found Barn & Willow, it was almost anticlimactic how easy it was! Two weeks later, we were enjoying the coziness and privacy that comes with having the roman shades I had searched for.
If you’re looking to try Barn & Willow, we have some more info for you. Not only is Barn & Willow committed to lowering costs, but also to reducing the overall stress and headache involved in the buying process. Without having to enter any credit card information, shoppers can select five 5×5” sample swatches (accompanied with privacy lining) and have them sent directly to their doorstep in 3 days. The customer is then able to compare and contrast various options until they find exactly what they’re looking for.
Through the development of their sizing calculator, Barn & Willow has also tackled the measurement nightmare known to accompany shopping for custom coverings. The sizing calculator walks customers through a step-by-step process until all necessary information is compiled. Don’t fret first-timers, Barn & Willow even provides measurement suggestions like the average distance between a window frame and curtain rod (generally 6-8” above).
I am always inspired when I see other businesses pushing the envelope in their sector, filling in holes where they see fit. Barn & Willow makes shopping for custom window coverings simple, without breaking your bank. Best of all, Birdie can now savor an afternoon nap without being interrupted by the sun gleaming through our windows. That’s what I like to call a 2-for-1. P.S. Enter promo code BW&WD at checkout to score 10% off your first Barn & Willow purchase.
Ed. Note: This post was sponsored by Barn & Willow. The compensation received in exchange for placement on Wit & Delight is used to purchase props, hire a photographer, write/edit the blog post and support the larger team behind Wit & Delight.
While compensation was received in exchange for coverage, all thoughts and opinions are always my own. Sponsored posts like these allow for the development of additional dynamic content to be produced, unsponsored. Thank you for supporting our partners!

BY Kate Arends - June 27, 2018

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June 27, 2018 10:40 am

What a beautiful post! Love the photos and the custom window covers 😍✨

June 28, 2018 4:26 am

Love those blinds. They look so elegant. And still let so much light in.

And I know what you mean about the cost of blinds etc. I moved into my current flat here in Vienna last year, and it took me a year to get curtains for the kitchen as everywhere I looked in Austria they were so expensive. I finally found affordable ones on a family holiday to Spain 🙂

June 28, 2018 10:44 am

Thank you for the timely posting – I just restarted the search after living in our home for over a year with those temporary paper blinds. Which colors are pictured here? Are the living room’s lined with just the privacy liner? Thanks again!

June 28, 2018 1:57 pm
Reply to  Suzy

Hi Suzy, all of the shades are the Belgian Flax Linen Roman Shades in either Light Grey or Off White! The only places that are privacy lined are the kid’s rooms, and the shades in the living room are just unlined linen. Happy to hear this post was so timely for you – enjoy!

July 6, 2018 5:18 am

I’d been browsing interior designs website recently until I bumped on your website! You share incredibly cool information and interior design ideas that are very useful for my next projects. Barn & Willow seems to have the right materials that I need to make my projects next to perfect. As a thrifty person, I always think outside the box to make sure that I don’t have to spend too much to achieve the pleasant interior that I have thought of. I also sew and construct things that fit my designs but I just end up feeling restless and discontent.

July 8, 2018 8:31 pm

I’m curious if you would share the approximate cost of the shades for your home, because the “at one-third the price” bit seems really overblown—and possibly just plain false—to me. We’re looking into new roman blinds for our bedroom and when I saw this post I was delighted to check out the company since they look so lovely and advertised themselves as more affordable than other shade stores. So I followed the link, entered the dimensions for one window, clicked through and selected a fabric…and the price for ONE shade was $538. That’s over a hundred dollars more than a… Read more »

September 2, 2018 11:04 pm
Reply to  Hillary

Right?! I thought these would be “affordable” too but they’re pretty on par with competitors if not pricier. SO misleading.

November 28, 2019 7:35 am

You should learn how to outline a paper You would have a prepared structure at the beginning.

May 14, 2021 2:39 pm

$700 per blind. Not affordable.

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