25 Clever Window Treatment Ideas Under $25

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Photo By: Kim Cornelison

Photo By: Dawn Mohrmann

Coffee Sack Curtains

When Donna of Funky Junk Interiors needed a window topper in her kitchen, she turned to an inexpensive and unexpected material — burlap coffee sacks that she embellished with stenciled typography. She created treatments for three windows for a grand total of $3, including hardware.

Curtains That Hit the Nail on the Head

No one would ever believe that these curtains cost around $18, including hardware. Michael from Inspired by Charm found this cheery fabric on clearance and hung it using pieces of chain link hooked onto oversized nails.

Placemat Valance

Lindsay from Makely School for Girls customized her windows by creating a scalloped valance out of 99-cent bamboo placemats. She transformed them with spray paint, a hot glue gun and some black ribbon.

Simple + Chic

Window treatments don’t have to be fussy. Karianne from Thistlewood Farms proves this by using a small piece of drop cloth trimmed with a bright pink grosgrain ribbon as a valance. Without pleats, ruffles or folds, this treatment is simple but chic.

Writing On the Windows

Roeshel from DIY Show Off made these no-sew custom drapes out of drop cloths embellished with handwritten script. Roeshel suggests making pencil lines first to keep the typography straight. Try writing a favorite poem or song lyrics to make it personal. At approximately $9 per panel, this is a big decorating bang for your buck.

All the Trimmings

Remnant fabric found at an upholstery shop is put to work as guest room drapes. They were lined with $5 of white twin bed sheets and trimmed with lengths of upholstery webbing cut in half length-wise and affixed with a glue gun. Mitering the corners of the trim polishes off the look.

No-Sew Drapes That “Hang” Beautifully

A canvas drop cloth, a coat hanger and some clothespins make this window treatment not only inexpensive but super easy to make. Donna from Funky Junk Interiors draped a drop cloth over a coat hanger and clipped it into place with clothespins. The hook of the coat hanger simply balances on the window trim for a fun, whimsical look.

Paper Garland Valance

If you’re a little short on fabric, try making a paper garland to use as a window topper. Paula from Counting Your Blessings strung pages from vintage books onto ribbon, bunching them tightly to create a fluffy, unique and inexpensive valance.

Burlap + Grommet Drapes

Julie from Julie Loves Home makes rustic burlap look modern with the addition of metal grommets. These floor-to-ceiling drapes add a lot of texture without going over budget.

Short + Sweet

Fussy, full-length drapes aren’t ideal for bathroom spaces. Traci Hutcherson from Beneath My Heart proves that with a simple window treatment made out of a pillowcase. She tacked the pillowcase into place and added pleating for detail. Not only is it thrifty and quick, but it’s well-suited in a humid space.

Hanging Mason Jars

Why should floral arrangements be limited to tabletops? Linda from It All Started With Paint created a simple, farmhouse-inspired window treatment with glass Mason jars and twine. She then filled the jars with seasonal fresh flowers.

Clever + Custom

After coming up empty in her search for inexpensive curtain hardware with a custom look, Karianne from Thistlewood Farms decided to make her own using a dowel rod, finials and brackets. She crafted these clever curtain rods for just $5 in materials from a hardware store.

Unique Hardware

While shopping at a local feed and farm supply store, Kendra from Creative Ambitions caught site of three rusty tractor steering wheels. While most people would pass them by, Kendra saw that the $3.00 wheels would make unique “curtain rods” for her porch. She mounted the wheels and then draped inexpensive muslin to complete the look.

Bring the Outdoors In

When Brittany from Pretty Handy Girl found some unused exterior shutters in the attic of her home, she decided to repurpose them as an interior window treatment. Since the shutters were originally made for the outside of the home, they were the perfect fit at the perfect price — free!

Foam Core Cornice

Rhoda from Southern Hospitality used inexpensive foam core to create cornices for her bathroom. Some remnant fabric and pretty trim make this budget-friendly design look higher end. Foam core is easy to cut with a craft knife, so the shape can be customized for any window.

Faux Roman Shades

Tension rods and leftover fabric are used by Beth from Home Stories A to Z to make these faux Roman shades for her living room. The fabric is held into each pleat by the tension rods, making a simple, no-sew window treatment.

Making Plain Pretty

Cheryl from New House to Home elevates inexpensive burlap fabric by folding it into deep box pleats and stapling it to a board to make an easy valance. A stenciled monogram adds even more detail.

Storage For Toys

Why allow unused space above a window to go to waste? Brittany from Pretty Handy Girl built storage/display space into the custom window treatments for her son’s room. A wooden rod is hung from the shelf using rope, and the entire look is softened with grommet curtains found on clearance.

A Solution for Old Sheets

These ruffled ombre curtains—stitched together in an afternoon from rescued bed sheets—add a fun, feminine charm to a little girl’s room. Try switching out the pink fabric for white to add texture to any space.


Marian Parsons

Stencil Play

Cheap drapery panels can be given a high-end look with a handmade stencil and a little spray paint. Get the steps here.


Brian Patrick Flynn

Fabric-Scrap Cafe Curtains

If you can tie a knot, you can make these curtains. We used white chiffon to brigthen this kitchen, but any fabric will work—try tulle for a girl’s bedroom or burlap in a sunroom.

Don’t Forget About Hardware!

Custom hardware can make plain, inexpensive drapes one of a kind.


Brian Patrick Flynn

Add a Little Something

Explore your local craft store to find trimmings to upgrade ordinary sheer panels.

Those Are Shower Curtains

The homeowner cut and hemmed a shower curtain to create cafe curtains to outfit the dining room.


HGTV Magazine

Fun With Dropcloths

Homeowner and blogger Dawn Mohrmann created easy, inexpensive privacy in her bathroom by wrapping a painter’s drop cloth around a curtain rod, leaving the edges exposed. She tied it back with a piece of French ticking ribbon.