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Are Curtains the Right Choice for You?

One of the biggest design dilemmas many homeowners face is whether they should opt for drapes or not. Is there such a thing as the perfect space to hang drapes? Are drapes the best window treatment option for a certain space (i.e. with low or high ceilings, multi-level or awkward windows, windows behind beds or sofas, trim, and so on)? Here are some tips to help you decide on a window treatment, be it curtains or any other.

1. Let Beautiful Trims Show

If your windows have lovely woodwork or other thick decorative trims around them, you can just let them dazzle with their old-world charm and hang curtains but not drapes. Trims are also very commonly seen in Craftsman- and Victorian-style houses. When it comes to hanging curtains, though, many homeowners are tempted to let the trim of the windows remain visible. So, they hang the curtain rods too low. As a result, the room looks slightly claustrophobic (create the illusion of shorter ceiling) and the windows feel shortened. Better opt for Roman Shades or other inside mount shades that won't obscure the trim and add the softness of fabric at the same time.

If your windows have lovely woodwork or other thick decorative trims around them, you can just let them dazzle with their old-world charm and hang Roman shades.

Note: Depending on your needs for privacy, Roman Shades can also be ordered with a privacy lining that will block light and prevent curious eyes from checking out your home's interior from the street outside.

Tips for Hanging the Curtain Rod of your Roman Shades

No matter whether you need full blackout or just love floor-length drapes, you need to keep in mind the following when about to hang the curtain rod:

  • Hang it above the molding and trim - This is a common trick of many interior designers that want to draw attention up.
  • Always make sure the curtain rod is extended wider than the window - That way, the fabric stack won't cover the trim of the window when the curtains are open. Instead, it will just sit nicely on the wall.
  • The curtains should cover the window and look substantial, even when left permanently open - To achieve that, add enough width and ensure your drapes are thick enough to add a luxurious effect to the room.

Now, you may ask yourself “won't the curtains cover the trim when they are drawn?”. The truth is that they will (unless you opt for Roman shades and install them as is the picture above). But, at this point, you should weigh the benefits you gain from having wide and high drapes. The visual effect you will have from them surpasses the fact that the trim won't show for a while. Curtains that are hung too low will make you feel suffocated in that room, and it's not a pleasant feeling at all.

2. What to Do With Windows Behind Furniture or Uneven Windows

Drapes are an ideal option to camouflage uneven windows or frame beautiful details in a room. If you have a couch or bed in front of a window, and you think that you can make it sit a few inches from the wall, you may also consider having drapes. If the headboard of your bed in the master bedroom partially obscures your panels (probably because they are too narrow), it's a good idea to think of a wall-length drapery that will add texture to the wall and look purposeful.

it's a good idea to think of a wall-length drapery that will add texture to the wall and look purposeful.

Follow the same guidelines for installing the curtain rod as with windows with decorative trim. Make sure you are generous in regards the use of fabric (the drapes should have plenty of room to stack on the wall) and select the highest window to hang them.

3. Options for Bay Windows

If your bay windows are narrow, you may use:

  • Cellular Shades – Inside mounted cellular shades whose color coordinates with the trim color are ideal solutions for your bay windows. It is also a handy option if you are worried about the effect of individual shades would have on your windows (i.e. make them look too small or bizarre). If you choose inside mounted ones the window trim will still be on display and also help minimize the narrowness of the windowpanes. That aside, cellular shades will give you extra insulation, which is great for both sunnier and colder areas.
  • Roman Shades – Flat Roman shades mounted on the outside of the window will make it look larger, so it is an excellent option for narrow windows. If you want to create the illusion of a single unit, use a bold pattern and mount the Roman shades close together. If your bay window has details around it that you would like to highlight and display, go simple to let the details pop. Plus, Flat Roman Shades can also trick the eye into believing you have a fabric valance when all shades are raised thanks to their neat stack. Finally, they will add fullness and softness to the room.

Bay windows look more elegant with cellular shades or  Roman shades.

For wide bay windows, you have different options, summarized below:

  • Drapes – Layered drapes and shades are an unbeatable team for large sets of bay windows. Ask to have your shades customized to the desired width and choose a sheer fabric for your drapes to prevent the overall window treatment from feeling a bit too heavy. Another fab option is to have pleat draperies that frame the entire window unit.
  • Wood Shades – Can't live without having items with a natural texture around you? Wood shades will make an excellent addition to your home décor and a particularly interesting option for your wide bay windows. Mount them outside to give a more cohesive look to the window treatment. However, you can still lower and raise them all in one go or each section (if woven, then even better) one at a time.

4. Sliding Glass Doors

Solar shades, roller shades, drapes, and panel track blinds are all fab choices for sliders that help reduce glare and fading of furniture, textiles, and floors due to sunlight flooding in the room.

What most people consider complicated and difficult is hanging them. In fact, it's pretty simple, especially when you have selected to use curtains. We can say it is just as easy as putting curtains up over a window. With a longer curtain rod, you can easily get the job done in a few minutes. Just make sure the rod you are going to use has a center bracket. Once done, thread the curtains onto the curtain rod (if the curtains have ring or closed loops at the top or a pocket top), ensuring the rod is set on all brackets (should be three in total). Add the finials (if you want to use them) to the ends of the curtain rod and hand the hooked curtains onto the rod.

Tips:

  • If you want to layer sheers with heavier curtains, better mount a double curtain rod.
  • Always use anchors when you want to hang a long rod on drywall. Otherwise, you may cause unnecessary damage (i.e. the rod pulls out of the wall).

Solar shades, roller shades, drapes, and panel track blinds are all fab choices for sliders that help reduce glare and fading of furniture, textiles, and floors due to sunlight flooding in the room.

What Curtain Rods to Choose for your Window Treatment

In brief, there are 4 basic types of curtain rods, each designed to address a specific issue. For instance, tension rods are used to support lightweight curtains and require no brackets when you install them (they fit in the window frame).

To pair blackout curtains and sheer curtains, we recommend double rods that also allow for mild filtration.

Traverse rods are mainly used when you want an easy solution to open and close sliding door curtains. They need a track system.

Finally, you may choose single rods if you want to layer curtains over shades or blinds. Thanks to their simple look, you can draw attention to any focal point you desire in the room.

If you have any questions about which curtain rod will best suit you or how to install a rod above your windows, just contact us. We will be happy to help!