Window Treatments

Window Treatments can be one of the biggest expenses when decorating your home and you're going to live with them for a long time, maybe even through another redecoration.  

So it pay to make sure that you are working with professionals who will consider all the details.    Here are some of my tips for getting it right first time.  

Gorgeous fabric from the James Dunlop Contemporary Collection 

Gorgeous fabric from the James Dunlop Contemporary Collection 

Fabric

There are so so many options around, its overwhelming for even those of us in the trade.   An interior designer will make sure that you avoid that overwhelming feeling, and don't just pick something safe or something that 'will do' to get the decision made.  We will make suggestions that take into account the look that you are going for and the overall scheme of the room.  The fabric content needs to be considered especially if sun is an issue  - and lets face it here in NZ sun is almost always an issue.  Make sure you get it right first time and that the fabric chosen for your drapes or blinds is enhancing your overall interior design scheme, and isn't just something that 'will do'.  

Beautiful fabric from James Dunlop

Beautiful fabric from James Dunlop

There are also many different lining options these days.  You don't have to settle for a thick, heavy, coated lining in white.  Soft drape linings are available in many different colours and weights and they can really change the look of your window treatments depending on what you decide.  Make sure you get the right advice on the best lining for each situation.  

Contemporary Single Pleat Full Length Drapes on a recessed track.  Photo: Houzz 

Contemporary Single Pleat Full Length Drapes on a recessed track.  Photo: Houzz 

Pleat type 

If you want a sleek, modern look with an efficient stack you can't go past an inverted pleat.  A wave top is also a really lovely contemporary look.  For extra fullness a triple (or french) pleat is the way to go.   If budget is an issue use a single pleat to use less fabric.  

Contemporary inverted pleat linen curtains on a feature rod mix nicely with the more traditional elements of the room.  Photo: Pret A Vivre

Contemporary inverted pleat linen curtains on a feature rod mix nicely with the more traditional elements of the room.  Photo: Pret A Vivre

Length

Think of your curtains as a pair or trousers - too short and they just look ridiculous.  My rule of thumb is that touching the floor is always best.  Breaking the floor, meaning you have an extra 10-20mm creating a fold is ideal.  You also want to allow for any movement, many fabrics absorb moisture and can shrink up in certain months so in this case too long is always going to look better than too short.  It is also best for insulation to make sure that you don't have any gaps at the top or bottom of your drapes.  I love it when there are also practical reasons for a decision that looks best as well!  

Photo: Bloglovin

Photo: Bloglovin

Even if your windows are half height your curtains should go to the floor.  It looks a million times better, or if you want to save space then go for a roman blind on these windows.  It's perfectly acceptable to mix romans and drapes in the same room, you can even make this a feature and use different but coordinating fabrics.    

Gorgeous coordinating fabrics from Warwick. 

Gorgeous coordinating fabrics from Warwick. 

Get the track right

Make sure your track is long enough that your drapes can stack against the wall and not in the window - so you can maximise views and light.   Consider going for a double track to give you flexibility with light filtering layers. 

Photo: Elle Denmark 

Photo: Elle Denmark 

Take your track as high as you can! To accentuate high ceilings taking the track to the ceiling can look amazing.  Equally if you have low ceilings, taking your track higher will give the effect of raising them and increasing the sense of height.  As a minimum I like to mount tracks at least 250mm above the top of the window where possible.  Unless you are going for a feature track, make sure it blends in.  You can have tracks custom painted to suit your walls.  So if you have black walls, go for a black track.  

Think outside the box

It's perfectly acceptable to change your window treatments throughout the house to suit the room and the windows.  Equally its perfectly acceptable to avoid drapes altogether and go for roller blinds, shutters, wooden venetians or roman blinds.   An interior designer can help determine the window treatment style that will work best for your home and your look.  

Bold Stripes work well in this fun playroom. Photo Dress My Nest 

Bold Stripes work well in this fun playroom. Photo Dress My Nest 

I have had some amazing results with roller blinds lately.  A lot of my clients are putting them in their contemporary living spaces.  They don't want the clutter or bulkiness of fabric drapes and even the most expensive and top quality roller blinds are affordable.  I work with SP Blinds and their rollers are top quality, their service is amazing and my clients have been absolutely loving them (and coming back to put them in more rooms they love them so much).  We can even install them with your building management system to give you full automation option.  They can also look beautiful softened with a sheer drape over the top as well.   

SP Blinds.  Duo Blinds give different options for block out or light filtering.  

SP Blinds.  Duo Blinds give different options for block out or light filtering.