Tricks of the Trade: Draperies

  |   Tips, Tricks and Insights

Draperies enhance a view.  Opposed to popular thought, if designed correctly, they do not obscure, but rather frame the windows, highlighting the outside vista.   This is accomplished by placing side panels on the outside of the window frames and the rod or valance above the top of the window.

For an open, airy feel, sheer draperies or lightly colored panels are best. Some may argue that window coverings are not even necessary. But, here is where subtlety and attention to detail enhance the decoration of a room or wall. Done correctly and to the proportion and scale of the windows they surround, draperies enhance the view. Think of artwork. Most of the time, paintings have frames. These frames serve the purpose of structuring the composition within; as such, it is a source of containment. They separate and define the boundaries of art to wall; so too with window treatments. In effect, they are the eyelids: either blatantly exposing, subtlety informing, or fiercely protecting the viewer from the view beyond. They let in; they let out.

In a modern house, sheer draperies, not covering the windows, but lying flat upon its contiguous walls, provide a sexy subtle frame. Again, they soften the transition between outside and in. Usually affixed to an overhead pole, the sheers flail with the wind, flirting with the floor below.  Occasionally, modern apartments have a series of ganged windows that stop short midway up the wall. In these instances, roman shades that fall to the top of the sill are most effective. Set within a pair of side panels, the shades create a perfect composition within the window frame.

Drapery treatments physically and aesthetically give an enhanced appearance inside and out. In their subtle and seductive application, they lead the viewer to a wider perspective, framing their vistas. From the exterior, they invite and give a welcome insight into the interior.