Scot Meacham Wood, formerly of Ralph Lauren Polo…and since leaving there in 2001…owner of his own self named San Francisco design firm, describes his personal style as “A fresh interpretation of European style, with a dash of Southern hospitality.” In this interview by HouseBeautiful on the topic of choosing window treatments, Wood articulates seven (7) specific characteristics that he incorporates into the process.
Q: “How do I choose window treatments?” —Sarah Z.
A: Sarah, maybe it’s just my southern upbringing — or my unending love of textiles — but, I’m a sucker for a beautiful window treatment, so I’m usually going to err on the slightly more lush side of things on this particular topic! Whenever we’re working on a project here at the office, part of our job is allocating budget resources to various parts of the project. Drapery is always one of those places where it pays to spend a bit of money. Beautifully designed and installed drapes will immediately elevate any room!
The other amazing opportunity that window treatments offer is the chance to manipulate the architecture and mood of a room. You’re basically placing a great deal of textile in a space — and well-placed drapes will work wonders.
Here are a few things that always stand out to me:
Traditionally, you should be looking at 2 to 2½ times the width of the window for the fullness of the drapes. So if your window is 4 feet wide, the ungathered panels should be at least 8 feet wide, or even better, 10 feet.
For classic side panels, you really have to go all the way to the floor. If you’re looking at ready-made drapes, make sure that they touch the floor, even if you have to buy the next size up and have them hemmed.
Oftentimes — and especially when privacy isn’t an issue — we design drapes that really only function to frame the view. Even in these cases when the panels don’t really need to close, they should at least look like they could close.
There are never going to be any hard-set rules about choosing drapery fabrics. This is where design stops being a science and begins to be art. If your other furnishings are leaning towards solid colors, here’s your chance to bring some pattern or at least a punch of color to the room.