The Shade Store Vs. Smith & Noble: Comparing the Top Blind Retailers

When investing in new high-quality custom window blinds or shades, two fantastic options to consider are The Shade Store and Smith & Noble.

But how do these top retailers compare when it comes to product selection, quality, services, and overall value? This guide examines the key differences and similarities between The Shade Store and Smith & Noble.

A Brief Comparison Table

FeatureThe Shade StoreSmith & Noble
Year Founded19462006
Locations70+ showroomsNearly 100 showrooms
Product OfferingsBlinds, shades, shutters, drapesBlinds, shades, window film
MaterialsPremium woods, performance fabricsHigh-quality woods, name-brand parts
Design ConsultationsFree in-homeFree in-home
Installation Speed2-3 weeks typicalNext day turnaround
Motorized OptionsSomfy motors, full automationIntegrated smart controls
WarrantiesLifetime limitedLifetime limited
PricingCompetitive with price match guaranteeLow price guarantee
ReputationWell-established, top qualityBudget-focused, great service
The Shade Store

Overview of The Shade Store

Founded in New York City in 1946, The Shade Store is a leading retailer of custom window treatments operating over 70 showrooms across the U.S.

The Shade Store carries a wide selection of shades, blinds, drapery, shutters, and smart home integration.

They offer free in-home design consultations, child-safe cordless options, EnduraClad protective finish, motorization, and premium quality tailor-made to your exact window specifications.

Overview of Smith & Noble

Launched in Arizona in 2006, Smith & Noble has grown to nearly 100 showrooms providing high-quality custom blinds, shades, curtains, drapes, window film and more.

Like The Shade Store, Smith & Noble provides free in-home consultations, child-safe products, premium materials, the latest smart technologies, and precise measurement and manufacturing of window treatments specific to your windows. They have a PriceLock guarantee to match or beat any quote.

Also Read: Battle Of Two Giants 3 Day Blinds and Smith & Noble

Key Comparison Between The Shade Store Vs. Smith & Noble

Both of them are top trending company for producing blinds. They have distinct features but they also have some key differences. Here are following:

  • Product Selection and Customization

Both Shade Store and Smith & Noble offer an extensive selection of custom-made blinds and shades including:

  • Roller shades
  • Roman shades
  • Wood and faux wood blinds
  • Vertical blinds
  • Cellular shades
  • Solar shades
  • Motorized smart shades

You can customize every detail like sizes, materials, colors, features, opacities, and operating systems. Experts will provide recommendations tailored to your windows and decor. Both have 1000s of style combinations for a perfect fit.

  • Blind and Shade Quality

When investing in window treatments, you want blinds and shades constructed from quality materials for long-term performance.

The Shade Store uses premium hardwoods and engineered woods from sustainable sources. Their roller shade fabrics have innovative insulating properties. Materials are sourced from leading suppliers like Bendheim, TuffSeal, and Achim.

Smith & Noble also crafts blinds and shades from exceptional materials including hardwoods, faux woods, premium textiles, and components from brands like Graber, Bali, and Kirsch.

Overall, both companies offerprofessional-grade constructionand materials for stylish, durable window treatments built to last over years of use.

  • Design and Style Expertise
Smith & Noble

With custom-made blinds and shades, getting the right aesthetic tailored to your home is crucial. This makes the in-person design expertise offered valuable.

The Shade Store and Smith & Noble provide free in-home consultations with design experts who evaluate your space, recommend perfect pairings, and show material or finish samples to match your decor.

You get personalized guidance throughout the process from measurement to final installation. The end result blends functionality, precision fit, and ideal style.

  • Turnaround Time and Installation

Once you place the order, how quickly can you expect delivery and installation?

The Shade Store usually completes orders in 2-3 weeks. More complex orders with drapes or shutters may take 4-6 weeks. Professional measuring and installation are included.

Smith & Noble touts next day turnaround. Most orders are complete and installed the day after final approval thanks to their expansive manufacturing capabilities.

For the absolute fastest turnaround, Smith & Noble has the edge. But Shade Store delivery meets reasonable standards for custom-made pieces.

  • Smart and Motorized Offerings

Both Shade Store and Smith & Noble offer advanced integration of motors, automation, apps, and voice control for convenience.

The Shade Store’s Motorization by Somfy allows app and voice control of blinds through Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, and smart home ecosystems. Automated privacy and lighting when you need it.

Smith & Noble also provides motorized blinds compatible with home automation systems. Their smart shades can be controlled via app, voice command, schedules, and AI sensors for ultimate convenience.

If smart home functionality is important, both providers deliver excellent automated, motorized shade systems.

  • Warranties and Guarantees

When investing in window treatments, you want assurance the product performs as expected. The Shade Store and Smith & Noble provide strong warranties.

The Shade Store offers lifetime limited warranties on most products covering defects in materials and manufacturing. Certain components have variable warranties.

Smith & Noble provides a lifetime limited warranty on materials and workmanship. Additional limited warranties apply for headrails, cords, batteries, and electronics.

Both give confidence in continuously flawless performance and guard against early part failures.

  • Cost Considerations

Pricing for custom blinds and shades varies based on size, materials, features, and complexity. Both aim for reasonable affordability.

As a premium brand, Shade Store skews higher in price but guarantees the lowest price with price matching. Excellent quality for the costs.

Smith & Noble competes by promising to beat any competitor’s quote and focus on value pricing. Great for budget-conscious buyers.

Also Read: Comparison Between Levolor, Bali and Hunter Douglas Blinds

FAQ About The Shade Store and Smith & Noble

Who competes with the shade store?

Some of the Shade Store’s biggest competitors in custom blinds and shades include:
Smith & Noble, Budget Blinds,,, Blinds To Go, American Blinds, Shades of Light, Blindster. Many competitors came later to compete with the established Shade Store. But they remain an industry leader in selection, quality, and service.

Who is the owner of the shade store?

The Shade Store is family-owned and was founded by Marvin Rich in New York City in 1946. Rich had previous experience in the window covering industry before opening the first Shade Store. Ownership has passed through the Rich family, and today The Shade Store is led by CEO Ian Gibbs, the grandson of founder Marvin Rich.

How long has the shade store been in business?

The Shade Store has been in business for over 75 years. It was founded in 1946 by Marvin Rich who opened the first Shade Store in Manhattan. The company has grown from a local NYC shutter business into one of the most well-known and respected custom window covering retailers nationwide. The Shade Store continues to be family-owned by the Rich family to this day.

Which blinds block the most light?

Blackout cellular shades and blackout roller shades block the most light of popular window blinds. The thick, layered construction of cellular shades prevents light seepage. Blackout roller shades have a special backing that stops light. For total darkness, consider combining blackout cellular shades with blackout roller shades in a double layer system for maximum light blockage. Wood or faux wood blinds with cloth tapes also offer excellent light blocking when fully closed.


In summary, when choosing between The Shade Store and Smith & Noble, consider:

  • Both have unmatched selection and customization with quality materials.
  • Your style needs will be met with personalized design expertise.
  • Smith & Noble has faster next day turnaround while Shade Store delivers in 2-3 weeks.
  • Automated, smart shade functionality is available from both.
  • Strong warranties provide protection from product defects.
  • Smith & Noble likely offers better prices and guarantees.

For a balance of quality, style, and value, these two top retailers give you an excellent experience and window treatments tailored to your needs. Consult with both to see which is the optimal fit.

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