Window Treatment Design Options Can Lead to Confusion
With literally millions of options for window treatments, are you confused, puzzled and unsure what to choose?
Do you have large windows, tall windows, narrow windows? Or do you have arched, corner, bowed, bay or downright tiny windows?
Regardless of your window treatment design challenges or your design objectives, you need to know how to “dress” windows, how to make a statement with them.
The good news is, you have options. Millions of combinations of draperies, shades, blinds, café curtains, and shutters can be designed and installed. The bad news is, it’s confusing!
Most homeowners discover all the options and they are overwhelmed. That is where a window treatment design specialist can come in handy.
Here are some suggestions that might be helpful.
- Privacy: Is your bathroom or bedroom so close to your neighbor’s house that you feel as though you are living in a fishbowl? Then you need a window covering that will give you privacy. Most bedrooms need at least the first layer of covering to give privacy. Working with clients, I have noticed that if the bedrooms are on the second floor, the trees will give them at least some privacy – but once winter rolls around, they will need fuller coverage to feel comfortable. Bedrooms and bathrooms on the first floor almost always need more privacy. Full draperies, or vertical sheers, such as Luminettes by Hunter Douglas, can beautifully serve that purpose. Bathrooms often need some sort of shades; cellular shades are great because they provide the option of having the top down, leaving an opening at the top to allow some natural light into the room. And automated shades are perfect over the tub or in an area that is hard to reach.
- Light control: If you want to control how much light is in a room – such as to cut down on the glare at certain times of the day or if you have a skylight in the bathroom and you need to protect perfumes and makeup from direct sunlight – you need easy-to-operate shades to control the light and decide when to open and close the shade.
- Black-out shades: This type of coverage is most necessary in bedrooms, babies’ rooms, and media rooms. On the market today, there are so many choices from which to select – but you must be certain that what you select will give you the darkness you prefer. Silhouettes by Hunter Douglas, even when you select room-darkening fabrics, do not provide a total black-out. My tip to homeowners: If you want a pitch-black room, then you might consider going beyond the molding by four or five inches – and above the window, as well. Or add a cornice or board-mounted valance to cut the light at the top. And we often recommend (and clients LOVE) side panels to cut the light on the sides and add a bit of depth and texture to the window. For media rooms, my recommendation is to have a very heavy lining, and to layer the draperies with two layers or more. You need to think not only about cutting the light, but also about enhancing the acoustics in the room.
- Energy savings: Who does not want to reduce their electric bill? All of us want to conserve energy! Regardless of whether we are environmentally conscious or merely want to save money, window coverings will help reduce energy costs. Some manufacturers have conducted studies on heat/coolness loss through windows and doors, and the results have been astonishing! About 40% of the energy is lost, even if you have new dual-pane windows.
- You like the view, but … the room still needs the warmth, depth and visual interest that comes from adding patterns and color to window treatments. Consider valances, cornices, or small stack shades. Place them as high as possible so you have maximum window glass (and to keep the big, beautiful view).
- If you have large windows and the stack will affect the view? In those cases, we recommend treatments with a small-stack back. Or we go with draperies. If there is enough room on each side of the window, we can go beyond the window on each side to allow the draperies to draw all the way and leave the window glass exposed.
- Bow windows are so hard to dress! Many hardware manufacturers produce bowed rods. If you provide a template of the curve, they will give you the exact curved rod to use for the draperies for bow windows.
- Bay windows? How to dress them? There are so many ways to design window treatments for bay windows! You can leave the bay open and provide side panels. You can use shades only, or shades and side panels, or swags inside the bay. The sky is (almost) the limit.
- Very high windows: I admit, sometimes it is hard for homeowners to think of ideas on how to dress overly high or massively wide windows. In most cases, what we decide on depends on the look they want to create and the purpose of the window treatment. We have used just tall, elegant panels on the sides, panels with swags or scarfs, or we have come up with unique designs and installation techniques that have turned windows into works of art!
- Arched windows: They are my favorite! One can be really creative in enhancing the arches. To keep the grace and beauty of the arch, I recommend “dressing” the window by allowing a large part of the arch to remain open, or uncovered. To enhance the height, one can start at the very top and not chop the window. It all depends on the style of the home, the clients’ preferences, and the budget.
- Shutters: They are the furniture to the windows! They are energy savers, they can be very affordable, they add value to the home when one wants to sell, and they can hide imperfections in the windows of old houses. They can be stained or painted to any color. Louvers come in 2.5”, 3.5” and 4.5”. Some companies offer even wider louvers. One can use them on arches, sliding doors, and specialty shaped windows. The louvers can be motorized to open and close the opening one prefers.
2017 Trends in Window Treatments: Simplicity is “en vogue.”
If you’re of a certain age, you will remember that window treatments in the 1970s and 1980s—especially custom draperies—tended to be elaborate, ornate and, some would say, “over the top.”
I remember that time well and enjoyed designing and installing richly decorated custom draperies, using trims, fringes, ruffles and other embellishments. While window treatment designers still use decorative trims and ornate fringes, we’re using them in a totally different way in 2017.
There’s been a general movement toward simplicity in design. One reason may be that people are on the move more than they’ve been in the past. Whether it’s moving to a new city for a work opportunity, or moving from the suburbs to a hip urban environment to escape the grind of a long commute, there’s more willingness to pick up and move. Simple design is easier to transfer to a new space.
Additionally, many people today are traveling internationally and being exposed to design trends in other countries. This “cultural openness” has resulted in greater use of clean lines in design, similar to what’s prevalent in Scandinavian countries. I’ve even noticed some reinvention of French and English design styles, with the use of less ornate styles and more contemporary furnishings and accessories to suit today’s busy, modern lives.
Back in the ‘70s and ‘80s, swags and jabots were very popular. They’re still being used today, but in more simplified designs with cleaner, softer looks. Drapery panels are the most commonly used window treatments today. Many are made with rich, unique and opulent-looking fabrics. The use of unusual fabrics and trims can give window treatments an almost sculptural quality (without being heavy and ornate). I’ve also noticed the influence of the Far East in the use of trims and the installation of hardware, to create window treatments that become the focal point in the room.
Our own clientele is following these trends. While they’re interested in simplicity of the style, they love extraordinary textiles, trims, and hardware. Different fabrication of drapery panels is also common today. For example, we’ve seen the increased use of two-finger pleats instead of the traditional pinch-pleated draperies, and we see pleated or shirred drapery panels on a rod or a fabric-covered board.
We at Gailani Designs are focused on creating fresh, new, and exciting windows for our clients. We combine our design education and experience with your style, vision and personality to create rooms and windows that delight our clients and WOW their guests.
To learn more about design trends of the modern home or to schedule a free, no-obligation design consultation, call me at (630)854-9082
Visit us at: http://www.gailanidesigns.com
Creating Window Covering with the WOW factor was the one thing out of many subjects we learned this past week attending the 9th annual convention for Exciting Windows!
Creating unique designs that is totally expressive of the clients taste and lifestyle, coupled with exceptional service, is what will make us stand above our competition!!!
Whether the project is residential or commercial, providing that one of a kind look is essential for success in our industry!
Are you afraid of dressing your windows with beautiful draperies and Valances because you are afraid of loosing the view?
Worry no more!
You can have your view, and dress your windows with beautiful draperies or valances that will add beauty, elegance, style, as well as giving your room’s warmth and coziness.
You need to express your desire of keeping the windows as open as possible with your window covering designer, and she or he should be able to come up with design options that will only frame the window with out losing the view.
Also now we have so many shades and blinds that when they are pulled up the stack is so minimal, or even the entire shade will be hidden inside the head rail that will give you the openness of the window that you want, and the privacy as well when needed.
You can reach us (630)420-0800.
Take a look below, here are samples for you to view:
It’s only September, but if you want your home ready for the holidays, the time to start thinking about window treatments is now! Before meeting with a professional, start an idea file for yourself; gather colors you like, magazine photos, advertisements, articles, etc. into a folder. Eventually, a pattern will start to emerge in your creative thinking. This will make it easier for you to convey your tastes and your dream vision to those working with you on your window project. Stop by at your local magazine stand, which is sure to carry some decorating and interior design magazines. Go forth and clip away!
Take advantage of our 1 hour free consultation and free estimate call (630) 420-0800.
This is a client that I have been working with since 2004! This is their third house, having just moved to Burr Ridge, Illinois about 8 months ago. When I got their call, asking me to once again turn their new house into a home, we started with the dining room.
What grabbed my attention is the beautiful curved wall that separates the dining room and the breakfast nook area. That curved wall can be transformed into a sculpture! I contacted my faux artist and asked her to come up with textures for that wall to make it pop. The color scheme was inspired from the finishes in the room, such as the floors, the dining table top, and the fire place. The circle form was the geometric shape that was very apparent and repeated in the space to create a rhythm.
Since the room has two large windows that bring in ample natural light, I thought we can afford having darker rich colors. The colors we chose were warm and powerful as well as appetizing: deep warm copper and commanding powerful black, accented by scrumptious kiwi green!
For the window treatment, a special fabric was selected to emphasize the circle shape. Larry Laslo fabric “Cufflink” color copper (from Robert Allen fabrics) was the face layer and it was lined with plain black sheer. The fabric “Cufflink” is made out of cut out circles which made it very special and unique. A special pleat was created to enhance the fabric and the overall modern design. As for the hardware, we used a plain stainless steel rod with clear white glass ball for the finials.
A wall sculpture made out of hand blown glass was a perfect accessory for the southern wall adjacent to the curved wall. The curved wall was textured in a heavy luster stone finish, with vertical lines, and in a soft coppery color with multiple greens, grays, and silvers. The heavy texture makes a great compliment to the delicate, transparent glass.
A special chandelier was selected for the center. It consisted of a large black drum shade lined in Matt silver with multiple rows of white crystal balls that creates a water fall effect! What is so stunning is that when it is lit, shadows of the crystals form on the inside of the shade that are the same size and shape of the circles in the window treatment fabric!
For the dining chairs, an upscale, Italian made chair was the client’s choice. The modern design, the reflective black lacquer finish, the high back with vertical lines and luscious black and copper upholstery fabric made this dining room a truly dynamic one!
The colors are warm, rich, and bold. The circle shapes are selected to emphasize the curved wall and make it more apparent as well as creating a rhythm and enhancing the curves and the vertical lines were selected to support the beauty of the high ceiling and to create the sense of luxury, elegance, and extravagance!
I had so many complements from all the members of the family. My favorite was: “I make sure I go through the room, even if there was no reason to do so, I do it just because being in that room makes me feel very happy!”
Here is a video showing the stages of transformation of the room
And finally the room is done and here is the client testimonial
For more ideas and to learn about window covering guarantee visit gailaniassoc
Making a room welcoming and hospitable is the goal when designing guest rooms. Whether designing a guest room in a large suburban space, or in a compact city dwelling, each has its own challenges. With careful planning and creativity, guest rooms will be an expression of the host’s style, hospitality and thoughtfulness.
Here are some tips and ideas when designing a guest room:
- A comfortable bed is a must; consider an extra layer of down to cover the bed for extra comfort.
- Vary the pillows from soft to extra firm and let the guests decide what is more comfortable for them.
- The bed sheets must be soft. Egyptian cotton with a high thread count is recommended. How about adding fresh cotton fragrance when storing the linens? But be sure to ask if your guest has any allergies.
- Upholstered head boards, pillow shams, Euro shams, decorative pillows, bed skirts, and canopies are all items that tell so much about the host.
- Fresh flowers are another way to tell the guest they are important, and they are very much cared about! Again, be sure your guests don’t have allergies. If they do, silk flowers of high quality can be used and will fool anyone into thinking they’re fresh.
- Displaying family pictures, trips, or special events will evoke conversation and discussion of happy times with guests. Another good idea is to have a wall display with words of wisdom. Special quotes framed or stenciled on walls is something to consider.
- Try putting a coffee maker or electric kettle in the room with a selection of high quality teas. Add a silver tray with fine china, various sugars, honey, and a pitcher with glasses for cold water. Guests could enjoy a fresh cup of coffee or tea early in the morning in their own bed room without disturbing the hosting family.
- Incorporate a reading corner with a comfortable chaise or chair, a soft comfy shawl, and a stack of well read books.
- Pay attention to details and add those extra ordinary trims, buttons, tassels, and fringes. Those details say something special about the host.
All the careful planning will bring a smile to guests’ faces, and will give them a wonderful experience they will never forget.
Call us for free consultation: (630) 420-0800
Here are some pictures of details and ideas you can use for your own home!
Here is a video of a guest bed room located at a Naperville residence!
When thinking about blinds, I think: neat, simple, orderly, compact, functional. They’re easy to clean, and they will give me full exposure of the window when I want a non-obstruced view.
Here are some general tips when selecting blinds:
- Verticals or any vertical sheers will enhance the height of the room.
- For vertical blinds, make sure to allow 3/4” clearance from the floor for easy traversing.
- For Wood or Venetian blinds, consider the use of decorative tapes to add color, pattern, and that customized look to the room.
- If vibrant colors are preferred, consider metal blinds. They are available in a wide array of colors, come cordless, and you can add tape to 2” slats for a rich, customized look. Make sure that the color of the metal blind is white to the street side, especially the front of the house, otherwise the facade of will not look unified.
- Generally the smaller the slats, the less light comes in when they are open.
- The top down feature is great for allowing some light in while maintaining privacy at the same time. This feature is ideal for cutting the sun glare when working on a computer. Now the cellular shades with the top down feature come with the cords hidden to the sides for a neater look that does not disturb the view.
- Select cordless for child and pet safety.
Call (630)420-0800 for free estimates.
Below are selected videos for the many styles and options. Enjoy!
There are a few rules to follow when mixing patterns in your drapery designs:
- Mix patterns that compliment one another, not fight each other. Two large patters will look odd together, instead mix smaller patterns with the large ones for harmony. Take a look below, and see how the stripes with the large botanical pattern make a perfect match for this Naperville home.
- When mixing patterns, one design element must tie the two together, such as colors, and forms. The valance in the picture below shows how the color of the fabric inserted into the pleats and buttons is a perfect color match with the checks used in body of the valance.
- At most mix three patterns, because adding too many might be overwhelming, and the draperies will loose their elegance. In the picture below a check fabric with the toil and one solid fabric, made the drapes for this breakfast nook outstanding.
- Vary the textures, for interest. In the picture below, a chenille was mixed with silk, with a fringe applied between the two. Please visit our Exciting windows website for more ideas gailaniassoc
Call us for all your drapery needs (630)420-0800