Window Treatment Ideas for Form and Function
February 20, 2014
•General, Interior Design
• 0 Comments
It's easy to get overwhelmed with so many window treatment ideas. Fabrics, colors, lengths, linings — there are a lot of decisions to make, and the wrong one can really ruin a room's style. Taking the time to choose the right curtains for your home is important, and the following tips can help you create the perfect look.
To Drape or Not to Drape
Curtains do more than complete the look in a room. They serve practical purposes by blocking unwanted light, and keeping the heat in and the cold out. Fabrics such as tweed, suede and velvet serve all of these functions and are quite heavy and durable. When selecting curtain fabrics, you should hold a large sample of the material up to the light to test its thickness. If you pleat it, accordion style, you can also see how the fabric drapes and whether it will fold crisply when drawn aside. Velvet, silk and linen generally hang best. Faux silk is a good choice in a room with a lot of direct sunlight because it is more durable than natural silk and less likely to deteriorate.
Versatile Neutral Colors
Curtains can be very expensive, so many designers choose a neutral color that blends with a variety of decors. Paint colors may change over the course of time, and keeping curtains neutral can mean keeping them longer as the room changes. Also, bright colors are more likely to fade in rooms with lots of light, so choosing a neutral color is a practical choice.
The Importance of Curtain Lining
Having curtains lined with thick, insulating felt can go a long way to prolonging the life of curtains. In fact, unlined silk curtains will actually rot. Adding curtain lining also enhances the visual appeal of the window treatment, creating added fullness and body for a rich, luxurious look.
The Long and the Short of Curtain Length
Drama and height can be added to a room by hanging curtains six inches or more above the window frame. For a modern look, curtains will typically hang flush with the floor. For a more traditional look, add two or three inches to the length of the curtain fabric so that the curtain will puddle on the floor. Add between four to eight inches extra on both sides of the window to block out light and add fullness.
Custom Versus Ready-Made Curtains
If you're opting for ready-made curtains, it's still important to invest in a high-quality product. Cheaper curtains will fade in the light, and it will be harder to get them to hang the way you would like. There is a big price difference between custom curtains and off-the-shelf, so budget will determine which option to go with. Having curtains custom-made means they will be exclusively yours and, thanks to being crafted exactly to your window's dimensions, they will create a truly dramatic perfect fit.
Applying these tips when selecting window coverings for each room in the house will help to create just the right look, making the time and effort well worth it.
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