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Custom-made drapes have been the biggest game changer for my clients in 2020. However, before we placed our orders, not one client failed to ask: "Why are curtains so expensive?" As I explained to each one of them, once you understand the different layers of the process, they cease to appear expensive and you quickly begin to appreciate what a worthy and unique investment they constitute.

There are up to four basic layers of costs you need to be aware of:


The investment varies depending on the kind and quality of the fabric selected, and the vendor that provides it.

In Switzerland, fabric costs are calculated by the metre and an additional porto charge may apply when vendor and sewing atelier are not the same company.

Factors affecting fabric quantity are the way a fabric runs (off the volt/vertical from the roll or railroaded/horizontal from the roll), whether it's available in a 140 or 300 cm length, the number of panels to be cut, the desired fullness of the treatment, and even the bottom and top finishes.


This is the cost of having your dream fabric sewn into panels ready for installation.

In Switzerland, the three components outlined below make up the basic sewing process which is calculated by the Laufmeter (the width of the fabric as it unfolds from the roll horizontally), so although the CHF amount will vary depending on the finishes that a client chooses and the kind of atelier doing the work, these are the components you need to have in mind:

1) Top Band, how wide and what kind of finish (Verarbeitung);

2) Hem or no hem;

3) Professional Prewash for certain fabrics containing natural fibres that may experience shrinkage.

Assuming that your home is fitted with tracks, Gleiter are included in the sewing service.

The Atelier may charge a shipping fee if you wish to have your curtains delivered to your home.

Other services like fabric backing or curtain panels containing more than one kind of fabric represent additional costs.


Starting with the decorator's copyright, their service includes professional recommendations regarding fabric, finishes and fullness; taking of measurements; ordering samples, placement and management of orders; sewing instructions for special third parties; driving to and from location and the atelier; communication with client, vendor and atelier; disposal of packaging materials before and after the curtains have been installed; collecting and delivering orders; steaming and/ironing wherever necessary, and if there’s existing hardware in place, curtain installation.


In cases where there is no existing hardware in place, installation materials and service have to be calculated. That is, tracks or rods, brackets and rings, plus the time it takes the installer to mount the equipment, which is usually charged by the hour.

Factors affecting the time it takes an installer to mount your curtains are the kind of system you choose, whether it needs to be cut to measure or is ready-made, and whether it needs to be affixed to the ceiling or walls.


And as the saying goes, information is power, so I hope that this information has given you the confidence to see window treatments, and in particular, curtains, in a new light: not as an expense but as an investment.

On a more social level, think about the number of persons involved in the production and installation of a beautiful set of drapes: from your decorator to the installer, from the seamstress sewing the hem to the sales person taking the fabric order, from the professional doing the pre-wash to the logistics driver delivering the fabric to the atelier, it takes a village and thank goodness for that!

If you need help getting started with new window treatments for your home or would like an obligation-free curtain quote, we are here to help:

Happy New Year!


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