Window treatments are fabulous.
Why? For one, well-dressed windows add wow to any room in the house. And they’re functional too-they can be used to block light, create privacy, soften sounds, draw attention to great views (or conceal less pleasing ones), and more. And they look darn good doing it.
To help you figure out which window treatment styles are right for your home and tastes, here’s a rundown on the basic types. Don’t want to spend a fortune? I’ll throw in some easy DIY ideas for dressing up your existing curtains and shades too.
Curtains typically hang on rods from rings, tabs, or ties and are pulled open or closed by hand. This type of window treatment is made in a variety of styles and fabrics to fit windows large and small, in settings formal or informal.
Drapery panels tend to look more formal than curtains. Drapes are attached to a rod with hooks that allow for opening and closing simply by pulling a cord. They usually hang from the top of a window or even the ceiling to the floor.
Blinds help control light and privacy and may be used with other window treatments or alone. All sorts of materials-including vinyl, wood, and faux wood-are available to match the style of your spaces.
Shades are used to block out light and provide privacy too. Styles include simple roller shades; top-down shades; Roman shades with sleek, defined folds; and balloon shades that billow when they are pulled up.
Cornices are affixed to the wall at the top of the window. Typically made of plywood and dressed up with paint, fabric, wallpaper, molding, or other embellishments, cornices are used to add architectural detail to windows.
Valances, much like cornices, are hung across the top of windows, cover curtain rods and add structural interest. Fabric valances may be tailored to create a distinctive shape or draped loosely across the top of the window.