If you really want to buy the BEST blinds and curtains for your home or business, wouldn’t you want to look at what’s available worldwide, not just locally? It is not that hard to import blinds and curtains, especially if you know where to look, and where to get help to make the process easier. Have you thought about importing blinds and curtains from China?
In this article, let’s take a look at what you need to know and do when importing blinds and curtains from China.
I. What is the Best Place to Buy Cheap Blinds and Curtains?
1. Cheaper Price
It’s a well-known fact that products made in China are generally much cheaper than products made elsewhere. That’s because China’s labor and manufacturing costs are much lower compared to other countries. Also, intense competition among Chinese manufacturers themselves drives prices down.
2. Excellent Quality
When it comes to product quality, you usually get what you pay for. That’s true with any product you buy anywhere. In China, as elsewhere, there are cheap, ugly, not well-made curtains. Then there are also expensive, beautifully-made handcrafted curtains.
Be prepared to pay high for excellent quality curtains. Quality curtains can be seen in the materials used (quality fabric and hardware) and the excellent workmanship on the finished curtains.
3. Large Material Selections
As the world’s manufacturing hub, China has plenty of raw materials, whether natural or synthetic.
That’s why you’ll find curtains in every possible fabric and other materials made in China. Chinese suppliers can customize curtains according to your needs.
4. First-class Customer Service
Chinese businesses recognize that they need to have an excellent reputation to have repeat business. And they know that a good reputation comes from having a good brand, which, in turn, calls for not just great products, but also excellent service. Chinese companies now make it a point to keep customers happy. And they do this by investing in training for their staff to provide excellent service.
II. How to Choose Right Chinese Curtains?
When you talk about room decorations or interior design, curtains are not usually given the same prominence as furniture. While often overlooked, curtains pull a room together and provide the finishing touch that provides a room with much of its character.
From picking the right fabric to finding the right curtain hardware, here are the factors to consider when choosing the best curtains.
1. Choose Your Color
Do you want your curtains to blend with the room decor, or do you want them to be the center of attention? If you want them to blend beautifully, choose curtains with the same color as the wall but a few shades darker. Or pick a soft, subtle color in the room (like a soft shade from the carpet or sofa). A bold curtain color will command attention.
Keep in mind that sunlight will make fabrics fade over time. So avoid bright colors if your room gets a lot of light. Neutral colors can be a good choice, as they’re less likely to fade compared to other colors, and tend to blend into the room decor.
2. Choose Your Fabric
Your choice of fabric material will determine how well your curtains function and hold up over time. It affects how your curtains hang and drape. It also affects the durability, coverage, ease of laundering, and your privacy. The fabric material also determines the amount of light coming into the room. Before deciding on the fabric, order swatches first to see and feel the fabric.
Cotton or cotton blend curtains let in a fair amount of light. They offer a crisp, clean, and casual feel, making rooms airy and bright. Cotton curtains drape well and are easy to clean and care for.
The textured weave of linen gives off a casual yet tailored look and brings in just the right amount of light. Note that linen curtains are usually dry clean only, and these should be hung right away to prevent wrinkling.
Velvet is a heavy, plush fabric that drapes well, blocks sound and most light, and keeps out the cold. With its polished look, velvet curtains are perfect for formal dining rooms, formal living rooms, or elegant master bedrooms.
If you’re going for a luxurious, romantic feel, silk curtains will do the job. They’re best for bedrooms or formal dining rooms. If the silk curtains are placed in rooms that receive a lot of natural light, protect your curtains by using window shades or line them with light-colored panels. This will prevent sun damage. Also, remember that silk is dry clean only.
With a sheer, light fabric, lace curtains let in lots of natural light, giving an airy feel indoors. If you’re looking for a romantic atmosphere, use lace curtains. Since they’re usually in neutral shades like ivory, ecru, or white, they easily blend with other color combinations.
Sheer curtains let in the most light and make a room feel light and bright.
3. Determine Your Length and Lining
Choose Your Length
Ready-made curtains fond online or in stores usually come in these standard lengths:
- 63 inches
- 84 inches
- 94 inches
- 108 inches
- 120 inches
There are also curtain length classifications in relation to the floor or window:
- Apron – 1″ below the bottom of the window apron; for windows that you open frequently
- Sill – 1/2″ above the window sill; for small windows and windows above heaters, counters,
for kitchen and bathroom windows
- Puddle – 6–10″ more than the length to the floor; best for tall windows; for rooms where you want the curtains to make a statement
- Trouser – 2″ more than the length to the floor; for bedroom curtains, formal dining room curtains, or rooms where you want an elegant look
- Floor – 1/2″ above the floor; for family rooms, living rooms, or other high-traffic areas
What would you choose: lined curtains or unlined curtains?
Lined curtains have an added lining on the inside of the curtain. They are usually designed to be noise canceling, heat-insulating, or fully light blocking. They also provide better privacy. Generally, lined curtains last longer than unlined ones because the lining prevents the fabric from fading. These curtains are preferred for bedrooms and entertainment rooms.
Unlined curtains are best when you want more affordable curtain options.
They’re lighter and airier, and best used in smaller rooms or those with fewer windows that tend to remain dark. With less fabric used, unlined curtains attract less dust than lined curtains, making them preferable for those with allergies.
4. Choose Off-the-Shelf or Custom Curtains
There’s a lot of ready-made or off-the-shelf curtains available, many of them made of high quality.
With custom curtains, you can have a tailored look that perfectly fits your rooms. Custom curtains come in endless design options, but you have to pay a premium price for these custom designs.
5. Choose Washer Machine Friendly or Dry Clean Only
Your choice of fabrics would determine if your curtains are washing-machine friendly or dry clean only.
Some fabrics may get damaged in the washing cycle. Delicate fabrics need to be hand-washed while some need to be taken to the dry cleaners.
Look at the care labels for cleaning instructions.
6. Choose Your Hardware
Curtain rods and finials (the decorative elements at the end of the curtain rod) should complement your curtain fabric. Velvet, chenille, and other heavy fabrics should be on large, decorative rods. In contrast, light cotton, sheer, and other light fabrics can be mounted on lightweight rods.
When searching for your curtain rods, also look at the kind of finishes. Consider if the rod design and finish itself blend well with your curtain fabric and the overall look of the room. Some curtain hardware finishes are:
- Chrome, silver, and nickel
- Metallic finishes such as gold, rose gold, brass, bronze, and copper
- Painted wood
- Wrought iron
Related Article: How to Purchase Building Materials and Furniture for Hotels
III. Where to Buy Blinds and Curtains from China?
You can easily find curtains online. You’ll have plenty of choices when you search for curtains online.
Alibaba is the world’s largest supplier directory. There you’ll find a manufacturer for every product you can imagine. The site has an estimated 279 million active buyers and 8.5 million active sellers.
To find suppliers and manufacturers, simply type your product and add the words’ private label’ or ‘manufacturer’ in the search bar. In this case, “curtain manufacturer” or “curtain private label”
When you search for curtains at Alibaba, you’re sure to get many pages of curtain suppliers.
The problem with online sites is, how can you be sure if you’re dealing with a legitimate seller? Or, if you’re dealing with a registered seller, how do you know if the company will deliver the curtains according to your specifications? And how do you know which supplier to choose among the many options presented to you?
Also, you’ll encounter the term MOQ or minimum order quantity in Alibaba. This means you have to buy in bulk. This is good when you want to get the best price, but this might be a problem when you’re just starting out and don’t have a lot of financial resources yet.
2. Visit China
Why not go to China to visit curtain factories and develop business relationships with manufacturers? That would be a great idea, especially when you have a business that will always need to purchase curtains. Like if you’re in the accommodation business (hotels, motels, resorts, serviced apartments, dormitories, etc.) or if you want to be a curtain retailer or wholesaler in your area.
When looking to visit China to search for curtain suppliers, Foshan would be a great starting place. Foshan city in central Guangdong province is part of the western side of the Pearl River Delta Economic Zone.
Well known for its vast manufacturing industry, it is divided into different districts that cater to specific industries. Curtains are manufactured in its Shunde, Nanhai, and Gaoming districts.
Explore Pingdi Fabric Market in Nanhai district in Foshan city for a great selection of curtains.
3. Find a Sourcing Agent
When you’re serious about buying curtains, it would be great to find a sourcing agent in China.
The sourcing agent will act as your representative in China and manage the entire importation process for you. Your sourcing agent can be a company or a one-man business. He or she will help you find the best curtain supplier for your needs. And by doing everything that needs to be done, so you get the curtains you need, the sourcing agent will make the buying process easier.
4. Find the Best Custom Blinds and Curtains Manufacturer from China
Now you have to decide if you prefer ready-made curtains or custom-made curtains. Ready-made curtains are fine if you want a fast and easy solution to your window treatments. But if you’re looking for something special and unique that you can’t find anywhere else, then be prepared to wait for your custom curtains.
Free Design for Your Custom Blinds and Curtains
Look for a supplier who offers free design for your custom curtains. Many suppliers offer this service since they will fight to get new customers.
Multiple Material Options for Your Choice
Look for a supplier who has a large inventory or has access to a large inventory of curtain fabrics and curtain hardware. This will give you plenty of design options for your custom-made curtains.
Trusted Logistics Service
Look for a supplier that provides logistics service that can be trusted, or has a partner company that offers this service of transporting your curtains from the Chinese factory to your doorstep. So that logistics will be one less thing that you have to worry about.
Upgraded Product Installation Support
Look for a supplier that provides upgraded product installation support. Find out if they have a local representative that can help with installation. If there’s none, they should have toll-free numbers that you can call when you need installation assistance.
Professional After-sales Service
Look for a supplier that offers consistent, professional after-sales service. Importing products abroad should not be a plain buy and sell transaction. Especially when large quantities are involved. Find suppliers that provide a dedicated staff to take care of your needs even after your purchase.
IV. Purchasing Process on Importing Blinds and Curtains from China
1. Measure the Size of Your Windows
Measure from the top of the window to the floor. Add a few inches of height where the curtains will hang from. Depending on the look you’re going for, add inches to your length. (See section on Curtain Length).
In measuring your window’s width, add four to eight inches on both sides, then double the total number to ensure curtain fullness.
2. Choose Your Material and Pattern
Think contrast when choosing your curtain fabric material, color, and pattern.
Solid curtains look great near patterned furniture or bedding. For solid-color furniture or bedding, use small, neutral patterned curtains with prints like dots or paisley. For a bold look, you may opt for large, graphic prints in a color taken from an existing decor.
3. Get Quotations and Confirm the Design
After you’ve given your measurements and chosen your fabric material and pattern, it’s time to get price quotations and to confirm your curtain design. Remember to give precise details so that your supplier will be sure to capture what you want in your curtain design.
4. Pay and Produce
Once you’ve negotiated for the price and finalized the curtain designs, you need to draw up the contract, make the payment and give the go signal to your supplier to start production. Ensure that contracts are drawn with the complete details and specifications indicated to avoid production delays.
5. Arrange Shipment
Arrange for quality control inspections to ensure product quality before the products are shipped. After this is completed, you can then arrange for product shipment using a reliable logistics company.
Remember that aside from your curtains’ cost, you also need to pay for shipping rates and taxes, which depend on logistics agents, location, season, and other factors.
V. Problems in Importing Blinds and Curtains from China
1. Quality Problem
This is a common problem, especially with first-time importers who have not done enough research on product suppliers. Avoid this problem by dealing only with curtain suppliers that can show positive client testimonials.
2. Shipment Problem
Delays in shipment are also common. This can be avoided by knowing your supplier’s production schedule and knowing Chinese holidays that might cause production delays, and adjusting your expectations accordingly.
3. Payment Problem
There shouldn’t be a problem regarding payments when terms are clearly stated in the contract. Consult a sourcing agent to determine the best payment methods.
4. Installation Problem
Installation problems may occur when some details are overlooked, like window measurements. Avoid installation problems by making sure you have the correct measurements. Also, ask for installation support from your supplier so that problems can be remedied right away when they occur.
VI. Must-know Rules on Hanging Curtains and Shades
Do you know how to hang your curtains?
Before installing window treatments, make sure you know the right way to hang your curtains. Your beautiful and expensive curtains are useless if they’re not hung the right way.
1. Quick Tips
The basic rule in hanging curtains is to hang them as high and wide as possible to make windows appear larger.
The higher you place your curtain rod, the taller the window will appear, so place the rod nearer the ceiling rather than the top of the window. Ideally, curtain rods should be placed 4-6 inches above the window frame.
2. Detailed Tips
Let the Light In
For a natural, airy look and feel, choose sheer or light fabrics that let the light in. But if privacy is your primary consideration, use heavy fabrics like velvet. Heavy curtains can also help insulate in colder climates.
Separate the Panels
When you have several windows spread out across one long wall, extend an extra-wide curtain rod from wall to wall and hang multiple panels to create a beautiful, repetition effect.
Hide the Hardware
Do you want a minimalist look with a sleek, modern feel? Why not mount the curtain on the inside of the window frame and conceal the hardware in the window frame? This window treatment is best used with large windows.
Match Your Curtains to Your Walls
Matching your curtain color to your walls is a fail-safe design option since it blends in with the room decor.
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