What Cell Size Do I Need? – Cellular Shade Sizes Explained

3/8″, 7/16″, 1/2″, Oh My!

If you’ve ever shopped for honeycomb or cellular shades you know that these window coverings come in myriad sizes.

The fractional measurements included with each product represent the size of the cell created by the two pieces of fabric. With cell sizes varying by a fraction of an inch, it can be hard to know which one is right for your window, and what difference these measurements make in the first place.

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Differences in cellular shade sizes may seem insignificant, but we’ll help you compare the different industry offerings to find the look that suits your window best.

We’ve organized the cell measurements into three categories: Small (3/8″), Mid-Size (9/16″ and 1/2″), and Large (3/4″) to help you understand what these numbers really mean when it comes to your window.

Small Cellular Shades

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Honeycomb shades with a 3/8″ cell measurement and under are generally classified as small cellular shades. Shades in this range are most often recommended for smaller windows. With a reduced measurement, the fabric cells have a narrower width that allows them to fit in shallower window openings that may not be able to accommodate larger cell sizes.

Small cell honeycomb shades like the Blinds.com Brand 3/8″ Cellular Shades look more proportional in smaller windows. Too many rows of small cells can look busy in a large picture window.

Small cellular shades are perfect for bathroom windows – they provide extra insulation by trapping air in the fabric pockets created by the cells, and are safe for spaces with high humidity and frequent temperature changes. The Bali Economy 3/8″ Shade is a great choice for bathroom windows – it has no exposed route holes so you’ll have complete privacy at all times.

Mid-Size Cellular Shades

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Medium Cellular shades give a classic look that will compliment any window size.

Mid-range cell sizes include 1/2″ and 9/16″ measurements. Different manufacturers have preferences for medium cellular shade measurements, but if you do the math, you’ll see that these two sizes are only separated by a few 100ths of an inch.

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Regulate sunlight entering your home by choosing light filtering or room darkening cellular shades.

Mid-size Cellular Shades are the most popular category of single-cell honeycomb shades on the market. With Blinds.com’s large selection for this size range, you’ll be able to find mid-size cell shades for any budget, and with a broad offering of custom options like light filtering and blackout fabrics, insulating double cell construction, and top-down/bottom-up and cordless lift systems.

Did you know that the largest percentage of air leakage in your home occurs through the windows? Spaces like bedrooms and living rooms with a large number of medium sized windows will greatly benefit from the insulating properties of cellular shades. A shade with mid-size cells like the Levolor 9/16″ Single Cell Shade will compliment the dimensions of these window openings perfectly for a sleek, unified look.

Double cell room darkening cell shades offer the most energy efficiency and privacy of any combination of our custom options. The Blinds.com Brand mid-size cellular shade stacks high to offer an unobstructed view, but blocks out 98% of light when lowered, so you can sleep soundly.

Large Cellular Shades

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Large 3/4″ cellular shades

The largest size of cellular shades we offer is 3/4″.  This significantly larger cell construction is perfect for wider picture windows because larger cell fabric is lighter per square foot than other sizes. With this reduction in weight, a shade that spans a large opening will be able to support itself with no threat of sagging or need for extra reinforcements.

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Blinds.com Signature Blackout Shades are a perfect illustration of the proportional look of a 3/4″ shade in a large window opening. The larger cell size looks just right, where a tiny 3/8″ shade might be too busy on this scale.

Find your size now!

We have a great selection of cellular shades in small, mid-size and large that are functional and attractive. We have gathered the top products in the industry to create a line that meets the highest quality standards and has something for every budget.

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If you’re still not sure what size is right for you, leave us a comment and let us know how we can help. You can also schedule a free video chat appointment with one of our window fashion experts through our exciting new service – Face2Face! If you don’t know where to start to find new window treatments, our friendly designers are here to help! Schedule a free appointment today

Love cell shades but hate power tools?  Check out our tool free InstaFit honeycomb cell shades – they are cordless and a snap to install.

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About Author

Abigail Sawyer

Abigail Sawyer is a Social Media Marketer for Blinds.com. As a newlywed, she’s on the hunt to outfit a new home with all things handmade, preppy and eclectic. Walking in the footsteps of Martha Stewart, she’s happiest when she’s crafting or whipping up a new recipe; although nothing beats curling up with a good book and some Girl Scout Cookies. Chat with her on twitter @BlindsDotCom + @whatabigailsaw and support her rampant pinning habit at @BlindsDotCom + @whatabigailsaw.


  1. Thank you for providing this wonderful and helpful explanation!

  2. Patti Reply

    Looking for the right size cellular shade for a window 57 X 69 that faces north and a bit west. Want it to be a good insulating shade. I thought I wanted a double cell but after reading, I wonder if a single cell would be okay? Would also like the top down/bottom up feature. Please advise. Thanks.

  3. Anonymous Reply

    Is it okay to mix cell sizes within a room? We have two large 72" wide windows, but also several 33" windows, all roughly 52" tall. Single-cell light filtering is desired. Would it be okay to do 3/4" cell for the large ones and 1/2" inch cell for the others? Or is it best to do the same cell size for all, for uniformity?

  4. Anonymous Reply

    Help! thinking celluar shade for a 4×8 fixed window. There will be 2 on either side of fire place then 2 more on the side walls. the longest side wall (20ft) in addition to the 4×8 there will be two 3×5. The ceiling in this room is vaultedand the go wall will be 14ft and the room will peak @ 16. Window treatment suggestions please

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