6 Drapery Insights

Savvy interior designers know that window treatments offer an opportune accent that completes the overall character of any living space.  Whether it’s fabric color, type, length or heading style…drapery in particular can create a warmth of decor to support your style objectives for almost any space.

Window treatments and window coverings are broad category terms that are used interchangeably…and encompass the gamut of options that range from drapery to blinds to wooden plantation shutters.  Even curtains and drapes are often considered synonymous items, but a closer look defines differences that can help you make correct decisions when finishing your particular application.

Curtains are the less formal of the two…usually made of lighter weight fabrics like (like cotton), often unlined…requiring less fabric…and consequently are the least expensive of the two.

Drapery implies a richer motif in general…and are usually made of heavier lined fabrics that…serving an alternate purpose of blocking out daytime light and heat.  Usually tailored in various distinctive heading styles…drapery also usually spans a larger space…from floor to ceiling.  Understandably, the additional volume of fabric and complexity of pleating denotes a higher price point.

Heading styles for drapery and curtains come in a wide variety of names…but generally ranging from more formal and sophisticated to more simple and casual.

heading styles - drapery & curtainsThe more intricate pleats tend to exude formality while the simpler relaxed styles with tabs or even eyelets…more casual.

In that same vein…length of fabric can contribute to a more casual or formal appearance.  Want a more casual, relaxed look?  Hang your drapery hardware so that the panel hangs approximately 1/2″ from the floor. Going for more formal?  Then you can “puddle” or pool the fabric on the floor anywhere from 1″-10″+ beyond the length necessary to barely touch the floor

Two simple mounting hardware placement rules always create depth and dimension…or a grandiose look and feel of the room:

  1. Hang Above the Frame – mount the rod just below the base of the ceiling molding. This draws the eye upward, elongating the space and making it appear taller.
  2. Hang Wider than the Frame – mount the drapery hardware 6-8″ beyond the frame on each side making the window feel like more of an architectural feature that fills more of the wall and can stand on it’s own. By framing the window with your drapery panels, you allow more light to flood the space making it appear brighter and roomier.

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