Custom draperies, blinds, shades and shutters not only help frame a beautiful room, but they’re functional in that they help with light control and can insulate rooms against heat and cold. The right shades in a bedroom can help one sleep more soundly, children can safely and easily open and close their shades if the right ones are installed, and the right drapes in a living room can make it downright impressive looking.
One of our favorite companies to work with when it comes to windows is Hunter Douglas, which has been the leading manufacturer of shades for over 90 years. If you have bare windows, here are some terms and techniques to think about as you decide what you’d like to do with them:
Draperies and Curtains
This dining room in progress in McLean has floor-to-ceiling windows framed with beige linen draperies which break at the floor.
DETAIL: The style of drapery is “Two-finger pinch,” where a series of pinch-like pleats come together about two or three inches from the top. The curtains have weighted corners so they hang more cleanly, and is lined in a white interlining fabric providing an extra layer of reflective insulation.
This living room in McLean has custom patterned draperies, made from a gorgeous English cotton print, which hang so that they barely graze the floor. These gather in a pinch pleat at the top.
DETAIL: Do you see how the curtain almost touches the wall? That is a custom return. This is the mark of high quality custom drapes; it takes careful precision to measure and get the fabric lined up just right so that little light shines through the sides of the panel.
This dining room in Baltimore features a Parisian, or fan pleat, at the top, plus a banded and taped decorative trim on the leading edge.
This bedroom in Baltimore has its windows framed with white linen curtains gathered in Parisian/fan pleats with decorative tape on the leading edge.
Not all draperies open-and-close. Here is a detailed look at functional draperies versus a stub rod. These draperies gather in a Parisian/fan pleat. These silk draperies in a dining room in Great Falls are functional on the smaller side windows. This homeowner elected to frame the larger windows with decorative panels and a stub rod due to a ledge along the bottom of the window. This is a good route to consider if your window has a radiator or other permanent item in front of it which would prevent a curtain from closing cleanly.
This feminine home office in Washington, DC, has a soffit – the track is hidden. The French doors on the left are framed with floor-to-ceiling drapes which are in the closed position in this photo. The window on the left is covered with a soft Roman shade which may be raised and lowered. The fabric is black and white toile. It is ideal for the mechanics of the drapes to remain hidden under the soffit.
…And in “his” office, we see another soft Roman shade.
A living room in Richmond has its windows and French doors framed with custom made embroidered fabric panels.
Shades and Shutters
Absolutely decadent Roman shade in a bathroom in Washington, DC. This features a valence and opulent tassel trim.
This kitchen in McLean features woven wood shades from Hunter Douglas.
This child’s room in McLean has Hunter Douglas inside mount blinds, meaning they fit inside the window molding. These blinds are “easy rise” with no cord, making them safe for children and easy to use.
A small valence on top of the blinds covers the mechanics for a cleaner look.
Hunter Douglas faux wood shutters cover the windows in the McLean home office. Faux wood will never warp and is easier to clean. We install real wood or faux wood depending on each client’s needs and wants.
Here are two more ways to use the shutters: completely open or closed.
Detail: Finishes on shutter hardware may be painted or left as its original metal.
Silhouette shades are patented by Hunter Douglas and diffuse light on its way in to create a soft glow. Blinds move between two sheer panels to achieve this effect. This shows the silhouettes in blackout/closed mode.
In this shot, the silhouettes are still covering the whole window, but are tilted open to allow the soft afternoon light to come in.
Silhouettes close up flat with no cords – like magic, it’s like they’re not even there at all.
We would love to help you find draperies and shades that are the perfect fit for your home. Please come in to one of our four locations to speak with a member of our staff about fabric and more for your custom window treatments. We look forward to working with you to achieve your home decorating goals.
…But before we go, enjoy a few more photos of past windows we’ve done just to keep you inspired: