Selecting the right window treatments can be exciting and overwhelming all at the same time, when unsure of the terminology being used. Budget Blinds put together a list of common terms used in the industry to help you better understand and pick the best window coverings for your home.


Aluminum Blinds
Lightweight horizontal blinds made out of aluminum.

Arched Windows
A window style that adds a design element to the space and adds curves that complement windows and doors. 

Automation
The ability to control your window coverings with a single device or with voice control.  Window coverings can be pre-programmed to open and close at specific times of day and are energy efficient and convenient. 

Back Tab
Drapery style that is constructed with a hidden tab in the back to allow for installation on a curtain rod or pole.  Forms soft pleats when shirred onto a rod.

Banding
A contrasting strip of fabric that is sewn either along the inside or outside edge or inserted in several inches from the edge of a window treatment. This enhances the look or adds a pop of color.

Blackout Shades
Window coverings that provide maximum light blockage and privacy.

Board Mount
Where a top treatment or shade is stapled to a board

Bottom Rail
The thicker horizontal slat at the bottom of the window covering that weighs it down and keeps it hanging straight. 

Brackets
Installation parts that are mounted to the window frame or wall and attach to the window covering.

Café Curtains
A short, lightweight curtain that only covers the bottom half of a window

Café Shutters
A type of shutter designed to provide full privacy on the bottom portion of the windows while leaving the top half clear and open to preserve your view to the outside.

Cascades
Zigzag shaped piece of fabric falling from the top of a top treatment or drapery. Can also be called an ascot or jabot depending on the shape and pleat pattern used.

Cellular Shades
Also called honeycomb shades; a fabric window treatment with honeycomb-shaped cells that maximize energy efficiency, insulate against heat and cold and allow you to control how much light enters your home.

Center Draw
Term used for draperies, vertical blinds and vertical alternatives that open and close from the center of the window.

Cloth Tape
Vertical decorative strips of fabric ladders on horizontal window coverings and improve light control and privacy. 

Continuous Cord Loop
When a cord is attached to a pulley so when pulling the cord in one direction it raises your window covering and the other direction lowers it.

Cord Cleats
Installed to the side of a window treatment which keep cords and strings tucked away and out of reach of children.

Cordless
Instead of using cords to lift a window covering you can push or pull the bottom rail to raise or lower your window covering.  This is a very safe and convenient option especially if you have children or pets. 

Cornice
A flat top treatment used to hide window treatment hardware.

Cornice Board
Upholstered and padded wood board.  Ridged top treatment. 

Decorative Hardware
Decorative accessories such as drapery hooks, tassels, cleats and finials that add a finishing touch to your draperies. 

Drapery
Panels of fabric, featuring pleated headings - a structured treatment. Considered more formal than curtains, are generally made of richer, heavier fabrics and lined and often interlined.

Drapery Hooks
A hook that allows you to hang drapery

End cap
Covers the ends of the headrail and bottom rail and are usually color-coordinated to match the window covering. 

Finials
Decorative hardware piece attached to the end of a pole or rod.

Grommets
Holes in the material that are reinforced by rings typically metal or plastic. Grommets come in different sizes and shapes.

Headrail
The hardware at the top of the window covering used to house mechanical operational parts and mount a variety of window treatments. 

Honeycomb Shades
See cellular shades

Inside Mount
S type of installation in which the window covering is mounted inside the window frame.

Jabots
Decorative pieces between swags used as decoration or to hide seams and are usually shaped like a tie, cone or mini cascade.

Layering
Combining two types of window treatments, usually a blind/shade with drapery which adds depth and dimension to your space.  

Light Filtering
Refers to when window coverings are made with semi-opaque fabrics or materials which allows light in while the product is fully lowered.

Lining
Fabric that covers the backside of a window treatment.   

Louvre
The angled slats of a shutter that controls how much light goes through.

Motorization
Battery powered option for raising and lowering your window coverings. 

Opacity
The amount of light that comes through a window covering.

Outside Mount
A type of installation in which the window covering is mounted outside the window frame.

Panel
One complete section of fabric of a drapery or curtain

Panel Track
Window treatment with large fabric panels attached to a sliding track.  Ideal solution for patio doors and sliding glass doors. 

Plantation Shutter
A type of shutter that has wider louvers that allow more light to enter into the room. 

Pleated Shades
Similar to honeycomb or cellular shades; made from layers of evenly spaced single pleated fabric that tightly stacks when opened

Pleats
A drapery technique used to create volume by folding and tacking the fabric to hold its shape.  Types of pleats include: Pinch Pleat, Goblet, Inverted, etc. 

Repeat
The distance from the center of one motif of a pattern to the center of the next.

Return
The outside edge of a valance or drapery. This part goes around the corner and covers the space between the front of the treatment and the wall, concealing the brackets and hiding the controls/cords.

Roller Shade
A window covering made of vinyl, solar screen or fabric that rolls onto a metal or PVC pole.

Roman Shade
A type of window covering available in a variety of styles including balloon shades, tear drop shades, cascading folds and relaxed folds. 

Sheer
A transparent or lightweight fabric

Swags
Section of drapery fabric at the top of a window that resembles a sideways C shape (swag) coupled with a vertical "tail" which hangs on either side of the swag.

Tension Rod
Also called spring rods; hardware that allows you to hang window curtains that doesn’t involve installing any hardware on the walls. 

Tieback
A decorative strip of fabric that holds draperies back from the window.

Top Down
A shade that opens from the top down.

Top Down/Bottom Up
A shade that can be lowered from the top or raised from the bottom up. 

Top Treatment
Window treatment that covers the top of the window and the drapery hardware.

Valance
A decorative piece that covers the uppermost part of the window and conceals the headrail of a window covering.

Vanes
The panels that hang from a vertical blind headrail.

Venetian Blind
also known as mini blinds or horizontal blinds; a window covering with horizontal slats typically made of wood, metal or plastic. 

Vertical blinds
Window covering made of durable materials like PVC, wood and fabric.  These are an ideal window treatment for sliding glass or patio doors. 

Wand
Operates the tilt function of a blind and is typically placed on the left side of the blind.

Woven Wood Shade
An eco-friendly window covering that is typically made from bamboo, grass, jutes, or other natural materials.



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