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Dressing your Windows

Window treatments is often an area I get a little push back from my customers when I mention "custom". I have so many clients that say "we're just simple people", "we don't need anything too fancy". This is when the education starts. Honestly, window treatments add warmth, coziness and also act as a thermal barrier. Almost every home needs window treatments for at least for privacy unless you're lucky enough to live in a place where your nearest neighbor is far away.

pinch pleated drapery in a navy, floor to ceiling, lead edge detail, glass beads
Custom Navy Drapery with Accent Lead Edge and Glass Beads

Let's start with privacy options. There are many ways to go but some of my favorites are woven wood shades, cellular shades and roller shades. Yes, I said it, roller shades, but not your typical white vinyl shades. Woven wood shades are my number one suggestion for privacy especially if there is no other drapery or treatment planned. It adds some warmth and texture to the room and these come in many colors. I just had some installed in a client's home not too long ago. The only color I'd recommend is white (or a version of it) unless you have dark windows. I also would recommend the light-filtering double or triple cell top-up/bottom-down shades. These are especially great for kid's bedrooms because you can have the privacy while allowing light in the top. It's also great for living spaces if your home is close to your neighbors and you need that privacy. Roller shades can be a nice addition if you also have a decorative treatment. Unless you have an ultra modern home, these shades should be used only for function and layered with a decorative treatment for aesthetics.

Let's talk Valances, Roman Shades and Drapery. Most of the time, I would save valances for a kitchen/breakfast room. Sometimes these can be done in other rooms but it really depends on the space. Valances are nice ways to add pattern and color and elongate the room by adding height to the window. These should be installed close to the ceiling and not just at the top of the window for the best effect.

Roman shades are my favorite go-to shades when you don't want to worry about kids playing with the drapery, pets, or if you just don't like the formality of drapery. Again, when mounted close to the ceiling these help to elongate the room and allows for a great way to bring in color, texture and pattern. These can be used along or with a roller shade underneath for easy up/down for privacy.

Custom patterned roman shade in bathroom.
Custom Relaxed Roman Shade

Drapery is a great way to make a room feel more "finished" and well thought out. It can be used alone for privacy but my recommendation is to layer the drapery with a privacy treatment like a woven wood or cellular shade. This allows the drapery to stay in place in a room where the privacy is needed daily.

Custom drapery is the best option when it works within the budget. Why? You're able to get the perfect color, pattern and style. The length can be made perfect to your needs and we can add a bit of personality/flare to the treatment like a detail edging, beading or decorative tape. If custom is completely out of the budget for drapery, I love Pottery Barn's back-tab drapery panels. It allows you to hang the drapery from behind and it helps keep structure similar to a pleated panel.

Floor to ceiling drapery.  Floral design. White and Gray drapery
Pottery Barn Back Tab Drapery Panels

Honeycomb shades and roller shades can be purchased through places like for a small savings as long as you're comfortable taking measurements yourself. Other times, it's nice to have a pro come in and do the grunt work (measuring & installing) for you.

All in all, window treatments are an investment but they really can help make a room feel complete, cozy and comfortable. It's a small thing that can have a huge impact on the room as a whole. If you need some guidance, please reach out.

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