Thursday, November 4, 2010

Key Principles in Window Treatment Design

This week I'm taking you through my family room/breakfast area window treatment design. I lamented the difficulty of my particular windows in the post earlier this week. 
Four large windows with two smaller windows on the adjoining wall.
Like anyone contemplating a window treatment design, I needed to step back and consider some key principles.
  • Proportion. I harp on this principle in every aspect of design (often warning against anything "dinky") and drapery is no different. In my room, I needed to balance the long stretch of windows and enhance the sense of vertical space in a room with only 10 foot ceilings.
  • Scale. See "dinky" above. My room isn't particularly large, but it does have larger scale furnishings. (My husband is a former linebacker...delicate furniture isn't a real option in my home!) My treatment needed enough visual weight to coexist with the larger scale pieces already in the room.
  • Balance. I had to somehow take into account not only the four large windows (even numbers are always a challenge) but also the two smaller windows on the adjoining wall.
  • Rhythm, Emphasis and Harmony. I needed to use trim, fabric color, texture and hardware to reinforce my existing design scheme. The breakfast area window treatment must relate to the family room treatment and the entire kitchen/breakfast/family room shared sight lines so, the treatments needed to reinforce a unified, cohesive design for the entire space.
View into the breakfast area from the family room.
Brainstorming ensued! Measurements, sketches, sample renderings.....

Thankfully (or not) I hadn't fallen in love with any particular fabric. Sometimes fabric comes first - you fall in love with a fabric it become the jumping off point for the design - and design follows. I felt that I need to address the oddball window configuration first and then explore the fabric, trim and hardware solutions. 

More on that journey in the next post, but here is a preview....I'm drawn to classic simplicity in my own home and began (obsessively) looking at how other homeowners and designers had addressed large expanses of windows. Some of my inspiration from House Beautiful below. 

Stick with me, the contemplation will end and progress will begin!

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