Drapery panels

Did You Know It’s the Little Things Interior Designers Do In Their Day-To-Day Activities That Can Save You Money?

Drapery panels

Did you know that interior designers do many things in their day-to-day activities to accommodate their clients? Little things clients never think of or even consider. These “little things” can make a big difference in the design, finished product, and in your pocketbook (save you money).

For example, working on a custom window treatment project, aka draperies (two stationary panels to be exact) the client said she’d get the rod. I said, “no problem, I just need to know which rod you’ll be buying”. I told her I can’t price out the drapery treatment, until I know the actual rod, she would be buying. The finished drapery length will be determined based on the actual rod.

Sure, ballparking the price of the panels is doable, but providing the actual cost and moving forward with the order, hinged on the rod, which translated into the client having to do her part.

At first, she didn’t understand why she had to buy the rod before I could provide her with the drapery price. She didn’t have to buy the rod immediately, but she had to select it, knowing the drapery lengths would be based on her buying that actual rod. Frankly, she was not prepared to dive into the waters of the internet, swimming through pool after pool of endless sites offering a gazillion rod options. So, she decided to have me spec out the rod.

This is where the behind the scenes work starts. The window in this project is a triple wide window and the height is taller than the standard height with roughly 8” above the window.

When I refer to standard, ready-made, draperies are made 84”, 90”, and even 108” long. This treatment will be made over 113” long. Definitely a custom order.
The draperies will frame the window as stationary side panels, but the rod will span the entire width of the window, adding a few inches beyond equates to the rod being over 10’ wide with the finials. I’m talking verrry wide!!

Rods this wide can be pricey. They have to ship by freight and even though we are only talking one rod, the shipping charges can be costly. You may have to skip a few Dunkie’s coffee coolatas to get these rods.

Since it’s a guest bedroom, the client wanted a nice treatment, but didn’t want to break the bank. It was my job to find a great rod, at a reasonable price to complement the beautiful fabric already chosen for the drapery treatment.
Initially, I thought of a large diameter rod, but a few things I needed to take into consideration:

  • The space above the window where the brackets would be mounted.
  • The decorative rings the draperies would hang from.
  • The number of brackets needed and the bracket heights.

Do you ever think of all the components that go into a window treatment project? My guess is that you don’t. Why would you? The beauty of working with a knowledge reliable designer means you don’t have to give it a second thought.

After evaluating everything above, the best solution was a 1 3/8” fluted diameter pole. I discovered through my research I could specify shorter poles and have them joined together to achieve the width needed. This option saves the client the excessive freight charges they could have incurred. The smaller diameter pole costs less too. Ultimately a win-win for everyone.

Although designers are not window treatment installers, it’s necessary, (IMO – in my opinion) to be knowledgeable about installations in order to make sure the designs (treatments) we create and the hardware (rods) we present to our clients will fit appropriately on the windows. 

I’d like to think the entire process will go as smooth as glass (LOL). The end result are happy clients with great draperies they can enjoy each time they look at them.

Draperies and other window treatments (valances, roman shades, etc.) are an investment in enhancing your home, beautifying the space you live in and providing privacy as well as blocking the sun’s harmful rays. They help to prevent furniture from fading too. These are all good reasons to take into consideration when you plan to make a window treatment purchase.


Also, if window treatments are not the only thing on your to-do list, check out…

3 Tips To Get You Started…If You’re Guilty Of Saying “I Can’t Stand Looking At Them (your needed home improvement projects) Anymore”.


What are your favorite window treatments? Have you invested in custom-made?
Please share in the comments below…


Peace and happy living,

Here’s a glimpse of the drapery panel installed.

Drapery panel

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