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How to Measure Roller Shades and Get the Perfect Fit

How to Measure for Roller Shades

Getting exact measurements for any window covering is paramount to ensure a seamless fit, functional operation, and optimized aesthetics. 

Any missteps in measuring window shades – especially for roller shades – can lead to privacy issues, light leaks, and unsightly overhangs. Such problems take away from the comfort and charm of your space. 

Understanding how to measure roller shades is necessary for achieving window shade perfection. First, you decide which mounting type to use, but what's next? 

This guide offers step-by-step instructions and shares information on the types of mounts and tips to make the process easier. With you knowing how to measure roller shades accurately, unnecessary costs can be avoided as there will be no need for expensive readjustments or replacements.



Roller Shades 101: An Overview

Searching for "how to measure window for roller shades" and other related terms online? You’ve come to the right place. But before anything else, you’ll be delighted to know that roller shades offer a functional and stylish window treatment option for residential and commercial spaces.

Predominantly composed of a fabric roll, a roller tube, and a control mechanism, roller shades come in various types, styles, and materials. From the classic simplicity of vinyl and fabric shades to the upscale elegance of textured natural materials or patterns, there's no shortage of options. 

These coverings not only enhance aesthetic appeal but also offer energy efficiency, with you even having an option for blackout roller blinds. For safety concerns, particularly for young children, some shades are even cordless. 

Mount Preferences: Inside vs. Outside Mount

When considering how to measure roller shades, the choice between inside and outside mounts plays a crucial role. This decision not only impacts light control but also alters the appearance and overall functionality of the shade.  

An inside mount creates a clean, built-in look within the window casing. Meanwhile, an outside mount can contribute to higher costs due to larger shade dimensions, meaning better light control.

Inside Mount: The Inset Appeal

Inside mount is a term used when roller shades are installed within the window frame. This mounting style necessitates an adequate window depth for the flush fit. An inside mount's clean, tailored look enhances depth perception, rendering an inset appeal. 

An inside mount, where factory-determined deduction will be taken 

While enhancing a room's appearance, its minimalist feature relies on sufficient window depth for a flush fit – this demands a good understanding of how to accurately measure for inside mount roller blinds. 

However, the proper execution of this mounting type creates the illusion of a larger room, a desirable effect for many homeowners.

Outside Mount: The Expanse Technique

Outside mount means installing roller shades on or above the window moulding. This approach is preferable for windows with shallow depths or obstructions. 

It is also ideal for roller shades for sliding glass doors and windows fitted with handles or levers, owing to its flexibility. 

Image desc: An outside mount, where no deduction will be taken

In addition to covering window imperfections, outside mounts offer increased control over light penetration and can make an entire window appear taller, giving it a grand appearance. 

Mastering how to measure for outside mount roller shades can add another dimension to your window treatment choices.

Preparing Your Space: Tools and Preliminary Steps

A well-prepared window space is essential to ensure the accuracy of roller shade dimensions. 

Window Preparation

Accurately measuring for roller shades requires you to clear the surrounding area to prevent any obstructions. For clean, unimpeded tape placement, use a mild cleaner to ensure the window frame and sill are free from any grime or sticky residue. 

Essential Tools

To embark on this project, a set of core tools is necessary. This kit includes:

  • Metal tape measure: Opt for a metal tape instead of a cloth one for precision.
  • Pencil: For marking points.
  • Notepad: To record measurements.
  • Level or straight edge: To ensure alignment.
  • Your smartphone: Ideal for taking quick notes or capturing reference photos.

Remember, having a backup measuring tool for double-checking is a good practice to ensure accurate dimensions.

How to Measure for Inside Mount Roller Shades

As you Google “how to measure roller blinds inside mount” you’ll find out that it can be a tad bit more challenging due to the demand for snug-fit, precise measurements. The task might sometimes necessitate an extra pair of hands, especially in the case of wide or hard-to-reach windows. 

Width Measurement

Measure the width of the window casing at three different points – top, middle, and bottom. Then, pick the narrowest width as the final measurement, ensuring the roller shades fit nicely within the window recess. 

There can be slight variances – something you should beware of – due to the unevenness of the window casing or existing hardware. By spotting these variances, your window blinds can cover the entire window, sitting perfectly on the flat surface.

Height Measurement

To measure the height, start at the top of the window recess and stretch the tape measure straight down to the window sill, taking readings at multiple points to factor in any irregularities. Opt for the longest recorded measurement to guarantee full window coverage. 


How to Measure for Outside Mount Roller Shades

“How wide can roller shades be?” is often a query when learning how to measure roller shades for outside mounts. Outside mounts present more flexibility than inside mounts, with fewer restrictions on width and length. This absence of limitations makes outside mounts a popular choice for DIY installations.

Width Measurement

For optimal light control with outside mounts, it's wise to add a few extra inches to the width on both sides. This allowance will ensure all potential gaps are covered, leading to more efficient light blockage. Wider shades can also add to the aesthetic appeal, creating an illusion of an expansive window. 

Be sure to account for any obstacles or furniture in the vicinity when determining the desired width.

Protruding furniture, opening doors, or structural features like baseboards may require some adjustments in your width measurements to ensure a smooth installation and operation of the roller shades.

Height Measurement

Starting at the desired top point – typically above the window frame – down to the chosen bottom point is how to measure roller shades' height for outside mounts. 

When making measurements, remember to account for architectural features like baseboards or window mouldings. 

Another helpful tip: Slightly extended roller shade sizes can create visually elongated windows – a trick often used in interior design to give an impression of a larger space. So, consider this supplementary height when planning room decor.

Expert Tips and Potential Pitfalls

Navigating the world of roller shade measurements can present some pitfalls. For instance, forgetting to account for elements such as window handles can throw shades off balance or obstruct their operation. Here are some expert tips:

  1. Precision is paramount: Always round measurements to the nearest 1/8 of an inch for accuracy.
  2. Guidelines are there to help: Whether it be roller shades, faux wood blinds, or solar shades for windows, don't underestimate the value of meticulously reading the manufacturer's directions.  
  3. Consult professionals for unique windows: Professional help might be the best route for unusually shaped or sized windows.  
  4. The checklist is your best friend: Crafting a simple step-by-step list will ensure no crucial step falls through the cracks during this process.

With these tips in hand, make room for that perfect sunlight glow without any stumbling blocks!


Roll Into Elegance with Factory Direct Blinds

Accurately measuring for roller shades, whether for inside or outside mounts, is a straightforward task armed with this guide's insights. Embrace these steps, and let the elegance of perfectly fitted blinds enhance your space. 

With Factory Direct Blinds, elegant roller shades are just a click away. Our vast selection of premium blinds is currently 35% off retail prices. Plus, with free shipping, free samples, and no sales tax, the deal is unbeatable! 

Don't just take our word for it – check out this 5-star review from a satisfied customer: "Great product, at a great price. Turnaround time from order date to delivery was excellent." 

Maximize the aesthetic appeal of your space with Factory Direct Blinds. Order today and roll into style! 


How do you measure for rolling shades?

Measure the width at three different points of the window recess for inside mounts. For outside mounts, measure the desired width and height beyond the window.

Are roller blinds measured from brackets?

No, roller blinds are typically measured from the window frame or recess, not the bracket. 

Does the width of a roller blind include the fittings?

Yes, the width of a roller blind should include the fittings to ensure accurate coverage and functionality.

How do you measure outside roller shades?

Start with the desired top point, usually above the frame, down to the chosen bottom point. Adjust for protrusions or obstructions as needed.

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