• Home
  • Drapery and rods | Sears Canada

Buying Guides - Window drapery and rods

Buying Tips And Measuring Guide

Have fun! Browse through our section of window coverings and jot down ideas for window treatments. Make note of the width and length of your window and take a look at our selection of rods and draperies. Keep this on hand as a quick reference as you define your look more closely.

  • How to select Drapery Hardware
  • Traverse rods
  • Combination rods
  • Curtain rods
  • Decorative poles
  • How to select Rod pocket & Tab top draperies
  • How to select the right scarf valance
  • How to select and hang Pinch pleated draperies

How To Select Drapery Hardware

Remember to allow room for the heading! All rod-pocket and pinch-pleat styles have heading measurements. You need to set your rod low enough so the drapery heading clears the ceiling.

If you plan to tie back draperies, the rod should extend at least 2" beyond the window casing on each side.

Drapery length will depend on where you want your drapery hems to fall: to the window sill, the bottom of the frame, the baseboard or the floor. Tiers are the only exception and should be measured upward from where you want the bottom hem to fall.

When using curtain and traverse rods, determine drapery width by adding the projection on both sides of the rod width.

Drapery rod width

Rods fall into four categories:

Traverse rods

Traverse Rods

Traverse Rods hang pinch-pleated draperies.

When using decorative traverse rod or decorator rod with rings measure the rod width (excluding finials) and order this width.  

If using decorative traverse rod, add 4" if you want the draperies to overlap in the center. Projections are not included for determining the width. Since draperies hang lower in these rods, set them 1 1/2" higher than regular traverse rods.

To determine how wide your traverse rod should be set:

  • Measure both rod projections
  • Add 4" for overlap and
  • Subtract the total from the ready-made width


To hang a pair of 48" wide draperies with no stackback:

Two 4" projections + 4" centre overlap = 12"

48" width - 12" (2 projections + overlap) = 36" rod width.

Combination Rods

Combination RodsCombination rods hang pinch-pleated draperies in combination with other styles of drapery for a multi-layered effect.




Curtain Rods

Curtain RodsCurtain rods hang rod-pocket styles.





Decorative Poles

Decorative PolesDecorative poles hang rod-pocket and tab-top styles as well as scarf valances. You can also use them with rings to hang pinch-pleated drapes.




How To Select Rod Pocket & Tab Top Draperies

These styles shirr onto a rod to a fraction of the original width. As the fabric gathers, a fuller, draped effect is created. If the description for the window covering you want indicates a rod pocket or tab top, follow the directions below.

Rod Pocket

For the most accurate results, measure the rod on which the draperies will hang. If using a curtain rod, remember to add the projection at each side to the width. Because the measurements we state for these styles are taken with the item laid flat, if you want a full look on your window, order more than you require to simply cover the rod. The more fabric that you gather onto a rod, the more substantial the draped effect will be.

Select a length that will create the look you want.

Hang these styles on plain curtain rods or decorator poles. Since rod-pocket drapes are meant to be stationary, unlike traverse rods for pinch-pleat drapes, these rods have no cord control. Plain curtain rods for rod-pocket drapes are offered in a wide selection - regular for 1 1/4, 1 1/2" rod pockets, 2 1/2" sizes for 3" or larger rod pockets, as well as metal for room-darkening fabrics and clear for lace and sheer fabrics. Decorator rods can be used for any style of rod-pocket or tab-top drapery. The widths quoted do not include the finials (decorative end pieces) and projections are not included in determining the width of drapery.


How To Select The Right Scarf Valance

Scarf Valance

For simple styles such as threaded through sconce scarf holders or draped on a rod, decide what length you want the 'tails' to be (tails are the sections at the side). Add this to the width to be covered. Order the scarf that fits this total width.

For more elaborate styles such as poufs, rosettes, puddling or deep loops, measure as you would for a simple style but order a longer length since these effects require more fabric.








How To Select And Hang Pinch Pleated Draperies

Pinch-pleated items are different from rod-pocket items in that the fullness is already built into the pleating. The sizes of pinch pleats we state are always the finished pleated sizes. When you order, state the exact width you require (if possible) or the next widest width and adjust your rod accordingly. For the length, measure from where the rod will be positioned to the desired length and, if necessary, deduct 1" to allow for clearance.

Pinch Pleated Draperies

To replace existing draperies:
Measure the width across the top of the drapes and the length down one side; order these sizes.

For new draperies:
Keep in mind the look you are trying to create when selecting rods.

For instance, for a layered look, use a combination rod. If you are using a two-way draw rod and you intend to open and close draperies for privacy and/or light-control, you will need an extra 4" for a centre overlap. One-way draw does not require a centre overlap.

To allow drapes to 'stackback' or clear the window completely, your rod should be approximately 1/3 wider in total than your window opening. If you intend to leave draperies tied back or stationary, your rod can be positioned as little as 2" outside the window opening on each side. With rod in place, measure window width, add the projection (distance from wall to rod) on both sides, add 4" for centre drapery overlap and add 'stackback'. The total will give you an idea of the correct drapery width to order.

Hang pinch pleated draperies on the carriers of a traverse rod. Carriers will allow you to open and close draperies using a cord control. Or, simply hang draperies on a decorator rod with rings added. Drapery hooks, which we include with all our pinch pleats, attach draperies to the rod/rings.

Note: Position your rod(s) above the window frame (leaving room for the heading!) so that drapery hooks and pleats don't show from the outside.