Decorating a room can be as simple as adding an attractive vase, a stylized area rug or even a beautiful piece of art. We tend to forget, however, that window coverings can also be a little “extra” that’s very easy to fit into your décor – even more so since they’re an essential addition most of the time.
Let’s start with the basics: How do you choose the right window covering?
- You first need to decide on the style you would like for your room: contemporary, country, traditional or eclectic*?
*Eclectic: A room done in eclectic style is a combination of various décors.
- Decide what you need based on factors like privacy, lighting, the existing décor, etc.
- Next, find the window covering that works best for you.
These are often under-estimated, since we think of the old aluminium blinds that used to be all the rage many years ago! Today, however, wooden blinds definitely have a decorative appeal that shouldn’t be dismissed. They’re just the thing for complete privacy with no light or for some privacy with the light from outdoors filtering into the room. Blinds are highly versatile and practical, since they go well with any style. You can also blend aesthetics and usefulness by installing both blinds and curtain panels – a combination that will add an even more personal touch to your décor. Note, however, that traditional blinds have to be cleaned more often (since dust can gather on, and cover, the slats).
Roman blinds (boat blinds), which are also highly decorative, offer different benefits than those of traditional blinds. When completely closed, they are highly effective in blocking out the light, but they cannot filter it out partially. These blinds can also be combined with curtain panels for a somewhat unique look. Roman blinds are available in all styles.
An array of fabric shades is available to meet all sorts of needs, which include blocking the light, ensuring privacy and keeping your rooms cool in summer. With their straight lines and lack of fullness*, fabric shades look very contemporary. They also go well with curtain panels. (Note: The types of fabric shades available are as varied as the retailers who sell them. When shopping, your focus should be on the benefits and characteristics of the shades you’re considering rather than the names they are given in the store.)
*Fullness: The more pleated the window covering, the fuller it looks. For example, a raised Roman blind combined with a pleated curtain will have a lot of fullness, while a sun blind will have none.
Curtains are highly decorative and practical, especially since they’re available in all kinds of styles. Add them to another window covering, and you’ll have a sure-fire winning combination! Just like roller shades, they can meet all sorts of needs – especially because of the wide variety on the market. The rod can also add a lot to your décor, depending on what effect you want. Don’t hold back, for instance, from extending your curtains as well as the rod so they cover some of the wall, which makes the window look larger than it really is!
When buying curtains, the desired fullness* is a very important aspect. A reasonable measure of fullness can be achieved by multiplying the width of your window by 1.5 – or, for very full curtains, by as much as 3.
And now for the final step, which is by far the most fun: choosing your colour and patterns! Why not be a little daring? For instance, match your window coverings to the accent colour in your room. Create a blend of colours and textures! You can also embellish your window by hanging decorative objects from your curtain rod. Use trimmings to hang your curtains from the wall: you’ll find an incredible range of options on the market!
Here’s a little guideline for choosing patterns: if you’d like a more contemporary style, go for straight lines, geometric shapes, graphics or, quite simply, something with very clean lines. For a Country look, choose a floral pattern, paisley or stripes. If you prefer something more traditional, consider patterns that are part of the Country style, but opt for very heavy fabrics with a lot of mass and trim them with gold accents.
Now’s the time to awaken your sense of design and share your window covering ideas with us!
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