I’ve been an interior decorator for 20 years, and I’ve installed my share of custom drapery for clients. Yet, somehow, I never cease to be amazed at the transformation that happens when a simple window is fully dressed. I’ve never been a shutter fan because they rob us of the opportunity to add drapery. Yes, they add architectural interest to a space, but most people who install them are putting them in rooms that would be better served with drapery. Having said this, I lived with ‘naked’ blinds in several rooms in my own home, prior to our renovation.
When we moved in 16 years ago, we installed top-quality custom blinds on all windows. That’s a quality decision we have never regretted. I believe in that saying, “Buy quality and you only cry once!”
When we renovated, we replaced the windows, but we didn’t change the blinds, because they are still as good as new. Yes, I could have opted for a lighter, trendier finish but since I still had lots of wood furniture in the room, I thought I could make these work.
One of my favourite reasons to add drapery to a room is the opportunity to use fabric to add pattern, colour, and texture to a space. In my case, this Kravet fabric pulls together the old colours (navy, burgundy, green) with the new neutrals (taupe, gray). It also adds a pretty pattern that I love, in a space that has too many solids and geometrics for my liking. Although this fabric came along after all the furniture, it has become the ‘road map’ that pulls all the other elements together in the room. As I change out the furniture and replace it with new pieces, this fabric has lots of colours to work with.
My kitchen windows also received an upgrade. I don’t like fussy treatments in the kitchen as a general rule. In my small galley kitchen, the windows are too close to the work area and sink to avoid being splattered. So, this is one of the few rooms where a valance is enough.
Now that the drapery and valances are installed, I finally feel like I live in a ‘grown-up’ house. At 50, it’s about time!