curtains Buying Guide

Finish your look with curtains that draw your decor together. We have a wide range of ready-made and made-to-measure in 7 days curtains

In this buying guide, we take you through the 6 simple steps to getting your new curtains, whether you opt for the convenience of our superb ready-made curtains, or want to get a made-to-measure fit for your windows in 7 days, in store or online.

Linings available on the 7 day service

The first step to choosing new curtains is measuring up. This way, you can see if your windows are more
suited to our ready-made curtains, or whether you should take advantage of one of our tailored services.

Measure up

Make sure you measure up accurately: this video offers advice on how to measure your windows.

Alternatively, we offer a measure and fit service where one of our estimators comes to your home to measure your windows, saving you time and making the process easy.

Linings available on the 7 day service

Now it's time to choose how to make your curtains. Choose from the following 4 options:

1. Homemade curtains
If you want to make your own curtains, you can choose from our wide selection of fabrics. You can buy all of our fabrics by the metre and can request up to 5 free swatches both in-store and online

2. Ready-made curtains
We offer beautiful ready-made curtains in a variety of designs and styles

3. Made-to-measure in 7 days curtains
For the perfect window fit, we can make your curtains to order in just 7 days. First, you'll need your measurements (see step 1). Then browse over 500 fabrics, and once you've chosen, Partners at Herbert Parkinson, our own Lancashire textile mill, will create high quality curtains, blinds, cushions and tie-backs to your measurements. Order in store or online

4. Fully bespoke curtains
If you have very large windows, want a show-stopping window treatment or need very specific headers or fabrics, then choose our bespoke service. Simply visit your nearest shop and we'll custom design soft furnishings for your home. Our bespoke curtains are available in 3-6 weeks

What do you want your lights to offer?

The style and drape of the curtain is defined by the heading: this is the top of the curtain where it joins your track or pole.

Our ready made curtains are available in eyelet and pencil pleat heading styles only, while our made-to-measure in
7 days curtains are available in the below heading styles.


Folds gathered closely together resemble a row of pencils laid side by side. We also offer deep pencil pleat headings – ideal for longer length curtains

Task light

These are a decorative curtain heading fitted to each window. They use more fabric thanks to permanent sewn-in pleats, for a luxurious, tailored look


These are only suitable for use with curtain poles and are available in 9 finishes. Eyelets have a standard diameter of 40mm


Loops of fabric are stitched to the top of the curtain for a classic look. Tab top curtains are the simplest to make at home


Easy Pleat in store only

Easy pleat headings are similar to pencil pleat curtains, but with a more streamlined look and more cost-effective pricing

Easy pleat - In store only

Wave in store only

Wave headings make for a contemporary option, with a special track used to create wide, even folds

Wave - In store only

Did you know...? Our 7 day service curtains are all made in the UK by Partners in our Lancashire mill.
Find out more here

Linings available on the 7 day service

Linings give a pair of curtains a better drape, while improving warmth and insulation within your home.
The below linings are available as part of your 7-day curtains.


Standard lining

Our 100% cotton standard lining is exceptional value, with the quality and draping of a natural fabric. It's available in a choice of 7 colours

Available in store and online


Blackout lining

Designed to block light and protect fabrics from fading in sunlight, this lining arrives in Ecru or White. No blackout lining blocks out 100% of light

Available in store and online


Polycotton lining

Our polyester and cotton blended fabric gives the look and feel of a standard lining but at a more affordable price. This lining comes in Ecru or White

Available in store only


Thermal lining

A heavier insulating lining, ideal for single glazed windows in an Ecru finish. It's suitable for use with most fabrics – please enquire in store

Available in store only


Curtain accessories

If you want these accessories custom-made as part of our made-to-measure service, they are
only available in store. However, for ready made accessories, you can purchase online.

Accessories Made to measure Ready made
Cushions A matching accessory for your decor, available plain, or with a piped, frilled or Oxford border. Sizes available: 30x40cm, 50x50cm, 60x60cm, 68x68cm, 75x75cm In store only Shop here
Tie backs Neaten up curtains when not drawn using tie backs. We offer piped and unpiped options In store only Shop here
Sheers/unlined curtains Available in a variety of heading styles, we have a specially selected range of 60 sheers and light fabrics In store only Shop here
Valances A valance is a piece of fabric that covers the curtain pole and track, for a decorative finish In store only N/A

Ready to order?

Visit your nearest shop for an estimate and to place your order, or place an order for ready made or made to measure curtains online.

If you order made-to-measure curtains, they will then be made at Herbert Parkinson and ready in one week.


Made in the UK


Setting the width

Step 1. Measure the total length of the track or pole, including any overlap, and divide by two to give the correct width for each curtain. If your curtains include part or half-widths, then position them at the outer edge of the window

Step 2. Knot the three drawn cords on the inside curtain edge. Pull the three cords at the outside curtain edge at the same time and gather the curtain in even pleats to the desired width

Step 3. Tie off the cord and wind any surplus cord on to the cord tidy provided. Do not cut the excess cord as you may need to let the pleats out to wash or dry clean your curtains


Hanging pencil pleat curtains

Step 1. For pencil pleat curtains, insert the heading tape hooks into the top row of pockets to hang the curtain below the pole or track. Insert the hooks into the lower row of pockets for the heading to cover the track

Step 2. Insert a hook at each end of the tape, then at approximately 8cm intervals across the curtain

Step 3. Check you have the same number of hooks on each curtain as gliders or rings on your pole or track. Don't forget to count the fixed end stop when counting the gliders on your track


Hanging pinch pleat curtains

Step 1. These are delivered in the correct width, with hooks already inserted and adjusted to the height ordered

Step 2. Check the hook position. Should the hook position need to be adjusted it can be done by moving the hook down the slider from notch to notch. To raise the hook, move it down to the bottom of the slider until it comes off, then re-insert the hook on to the top of the slider and move it down to the desired position

Step 3. Check the curtain against the track or pole: we include additional pin hooks to insert at the end of each curtain to suit the track or pole


Watch: Types of curtain linings


Dressing your curtains

Step 1. Draw your curtains back into the open position and tease the pleats into position. There will be a pleat falling from each hook position in the case of pencil pleat curtains or from the centre of each pinch pleat curtain

Step 2. Starting from one side of the curtain, work from the top downwards, separating each pleat or fold by hand, down the full length of the curtain

Step 3. Once you're happy with the pleats, tie strips of fabric loosely at regular intervals down the length of the curtains and leave for 24 hours to set the pleats


Watch: How to hang curtains

Made in the UK

Our 7 day service curtains are all made in the UK by Partners in our Lancashire mill.

The Herbert Parkinson mill in Darwen, North West Lancashire is one of the few remaining textile manufacturers in Britain, and a thriving example of UK design, quality and craftsmanship.

Established in 1935 by Herbert Parkinson, it was acquired by the John Lewis Partnership in 1953, and produces many of our John Lewis soft furnishings and bedding ranges, as well as made-to-order and bespoke products.

Its highly skilled weavers also create and produce unique fabrics on the mill’s looms, including designs that are exclusive to our shops, all while combining the best of modern technology and traditional skills.

Click here to see how curtains are made in our Herbert Parkinson mill.