I love windows. I like everything about them--the way they let light shine in during the day, the way they let light shine out at night--windows are one of my favorite things.
I like window treatments, too--all kinds of window treatments.
One of my favorite window treatments is the plantation shutter, like these in my bedroom. One of my favorite looks is color-painted walls with white trim, and plantation shutters just blend in seamlessly with the white trim. They're great for privacy and light control. I like the way they look when they're closed or open. They look great from outside, too.
Another of my favorite window treatments is woven blinds, like these matchstick blinds in my living room:
While I really like fabric window treatments, I don't like to pay for them. So all the fabric window treatments in my house are homemade, like these full-length curtains in my guest room:
Here's a confession, though. The guest room is the only room in my house with full-length curtains. I admire the look of full-length curtains and draperies, but somehow I just don't like to mess with them. Mine always seem to collect dust and dog hair along the bottom or get pulled from their rods or hang crooked. Besides, full-length curtains require so many yards of fabric that I balk at the cost. I do like to add color and pattern and texture to a room, but I usually do that in the form of decorative valances.
My kitchen window sports a no-sew faux Roman shade.
My youngest son's room has a simple valance to coordinate with his colorful walls and homemade upholstered headboard.
My laundry room wears a simple straight valance made of cheerful fabric.
That laundry room window treatment is made my favorite way: it's just fabric stapled to a board with trim added. To make this kind of valance, I cut a board (I usually use a 1x4) the width I desire. I make a fabric panel the width of my board plus enough to cover the sides. I usually just double over a piece of fabric and use the bottom fold as the bottom of the valance. If I don't have enough fabric to double over, I sometimes sew a lining to the back of my decorative fabric.
I attach L-brackets to the bottom of the board and to the window frame or wall above the window, like this:
Then I staple the fabric panel to the top of the board, making sure that the panel hangs straight. From there, I can add as little or as much embellishment as I like. The laundry room valance simply has a couple of layers of trim glued onto the top.
In the breakfast room of my last house, I layered envelope-style panels on top of straight panels, then added trim at the top and a large covered button to the middle of the top panels.
In the bedroom of my last house, I made a valance from scraps of fabric left over from my bedding. This consisted of a flat panel stapled to the board, two panels draped over the flat panel, pelmets added to the ends and in the middle, eyelash trim stapled to the very top, and covered buttons added to each pelmet. I just sketched designs out on a piece of paper until I came up with a combination I liked.
Here's a secret for you: window valances don't get any wear and tear, so they don't have to be perfectly made. You have no worries about how they'll hold up, so you can just put them together with staples and glue and a little spit!
And here's another secret: windows don't have to be treated to look great. If your walls are painted a lovely color and your trim is crisp white, untreated windows can look great. For instance, the windows in my blue dining room are completely untreated--except at Christmastime, when I have fun adding decorations to the window frames, like this:
So how about you? What kinds of window treatments do you like? Do you make your own? Check out the window treatment party at Kelly's Korner for lots of ideas!