Window Treatment and Draperies Primer

There's a functional need for a window treatment or draperies. Sometimes they control light, sometimes they're needed for privacy. Either way, there's a second, less obvious function that they share: The colors and styles of these decorating accessories add to the mood, style and feel of a room. 

If you want to create a relaxing oasis that's also inviting to guests, your interior design needs to extend to the way you dress your windows. Window treatments should blend with your overall theme to create a complete atmosphere. The elements and colors you choose can be either dramatic or subtle, but whether they blend with your design or dominate it, they're an essential part of pulling a room's theme together.

Color and Mood
Color has the ability to communicate with the mind in a unique way. Colors set a mood, and mixing color with design elements enhances the overall feel of a room.

Blue tones can create a calming effect. If you want your room to have a relaxing effect, try using various hues of blue in the fabrics of your drapery and window treatments.  

Yellow is an exciting color that creates happiness and an energy. That is why people generally use yellow in kitchen fabrics. The kitchen is a busy place, full of excitement, be it cooking or having a family get-together. Adding yellow to draperies and window treatments can liven up your room. Try using sheer drapery fabrics to let in some natural light, which creates more energy.  

Hardware Completes the Look
Using window treatment hardware, such as decorative rods, can add to the design element. Hardware comes in a variety of shapes, colors and sizes. For instance, if your room's theme is butterflies and you want a bright feel, you can find finials (curtain rod ends) that are yellow and shaped like butterflies.  

Don't forget about blinds; not all blinds are plain. The right set of vertical or horizontal blinds can add to a room's design. Blinds come in various shapes and sizes and are made of assorted materials. Some are even lined with drapery fabrics, which is great for creating mood with color. These types of blinds can be an alternative to draperies or used in conjunction with them. It depends on the look you are trying to create, as well as how much natural light you want to bring into the room.  

Blinds and draperies can accent each other by combining different colors. If your room is blue and green, try green blinds and draperies or curtains with both blue and green hues in them. To go for an elegant look, try adding one green panel of satin to one side of the window and one light blue sheer panel to the other side. Use a darker blue sheer fabric for the tiebacks. Blue and green work well together, as blue symbolizes relaxation while green symbolizes nature. Some people find natural colors, particularly deep forest greens and water-inspired blues, very relaxing. 

Decorative Elements
Swags and valances generally add an elegant effect but also can be used in other situations. If you are going for a country look, a ruffled swag can help add that feel. If you are going for something more elegant, try a swag or valance made with satin or chenille. A swag generally only flows across the top of the draperies, while a valance will go across the top and usually hangs down lower, often hiding a curtain rod. A valance can even hang down a good distance on either side of the draperies, panels or curtains.  

The shapes created with window treatments can also contribute to the mood, style and feel of a room. If you want your room to feel more open and inviting, try an open design with sheer panels tied to the sides. The natural light that flows in combines with the open design of the window treatments to create a sense of openness that helps to draw people into the room. 

For the full effect, try combining blue and yellow tones. The yellow will accent the natural lighting, while the blue will create a relaxing mood. The open effect can also make a smaller room feel bigger than it actually is. This is a great design for a living area, as it can make people feel comfortable and cozy. It is a very welcoming design choice.

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