Designer window treatments – DIY style

For homeowners, window treatments are like jewelry for an outfit, only for your home. They are not only necessary, but also add character. Here’s how to get designer windows – DIY style.

Window treatments have a job to do
They go beyond personal style. A good window treatment will complement the new space without looking like they are working too hard. This can be achieved by first determining what functions the window coverings should perform.

Room designed by Jane Lockhart, Jane Lockhart, B.A.A.I.D, intern ARIDO, Principal Designer, Jane Lockhart Interior Design (janelockhart.com) Photography, Gillian Jackson (gillianjackson.ca) courtesy Kylemore Communities (kylemorecommunities.com)

Room designed by Jane Lockhart, Jane Lockhart, B.A.A.I.D, intern ARIDO, Principal Designer, Jane Lockhart Interior Design (janelockhart.com)
Photography, Gillian Jackson (gillianjackson.ca) courtesy Kylemore Communities (kylemorecommunities.com)

A window covering isn’t just for show
Most people are looking for privacy, light control or to manage temperature. It’s important to first determine the “job” of the window treatment. This will make it much easier to select the best type for your space. There are two types of window treatments – operable and fixed. Operable means that the homeowner is able to operate or move them, and fixed are non-moving.

Identify style
Layering is a fabulous option for both style and purpose. Many people select blinds, as they offer many solutions, and then add fixed drapery panels for decoration. Layering of window coverings is the best way to complete a window as it adds function and a personal feel.

Room designed by Jane Lockhart, Jane Lockhart, B.A.A.I.D, intern ARIDO, Principal Designer, Jane Lockhart Interior Design (janelockhart.com) Photography, Brandon Barré (brandonbarre.com)

Room designed by Jane Lockhart, Jane Lockhart, B.A.A.I.D, intern ARIDO, Principal Designer, Jane Lockhart Interior Design (janelockhart.com)
Photography, Brandon Barré (brandonbarre.com)

Blinds can be a great alternative
They perform a function, but they also come in so many different styles and colours. Blinds can also be rolled away completely or tilted to allow some lighting. If new-home owners don’t like the vertical strip, so synonymous of the blinds, and don’t want it to dominate their design, there are other options. If looking for warmth, look for a horizontal slat such as a wood or a fabric version called silhouette by Hunter Douglas (hunterdouglas.ca), which means they are all fabric and all sewn together. Most of the fabric is sheer except for one strip, which operates as the slat would on traditional blinds. Other options include solar screens, if you’re looking to control the UV, or roller blinds for minimal light penetration. A roman blind is another great option to add definition to window treatments. This option can be suspended completely, covering the entire window or a portion of the window. Roman blinds can also be completely pulled up, creating a decorative ruching effect at the top of the window.

Shutters versus blinds
When shopping for window treatments, it is important to know the difference between shutters and blinds. Shutters cover the whole window and can be considered an all-in-one window covering so no additional drapery will be required. Shutters will reduce the amount of light generally entering a space. A blind is lighter and can be rolled away to show an open window but can be more delicate in moist areas.

Condo needs
Condos have completely different needs in terms of window treatments versus lowrise homes. In a condo, blinds are important for managing solar heat. In addition, they also can be used for helping to maintain the interior focus within the space. Views are great, but can be distracting especially at night when windows can act like a big black mirror. If darkness for sleeping is a concern, add blinds for daytime light and privacy management and drapes for night time as these black out light the best.

Don’t let your window treatments be an afterthought! When done right, they will let homeowners inject their own personality into the home while managing light, heat and privacy.

Related reading:

Redefining luxury housing – Gen Y style

Outdoor living at home this spring

Decorating your home with tips from Jane Lockhart

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