Styling Your Windows like a Professional

Windows are the pathway in which natural light enters our homes. They also allow us to enjoy the beautiful outdoor views without leaving our sofa. In any well-designed space, windows are efficient and work with the changing sunlight to give your space light throughout the day. Window treatments are a vital component in styling windows and maximizing the effect of the sunlight in your home. They are also crucial for bringing privacy and comfort in the evening. 

While many of us have windows in our homes, not many of us know how to properly style them to bring about the desired effect or look. I’m going to give you my top tips for styling your windows and how you can create a luxurious look.

The First Step

The first step of styling your windows is to decide the purpose of the window treatment. Is it to control light? Create privacy from the street? Make the room dark? Add insulation for drafty windows? Install dimension and texture to your interior space?   Knowing why you want window treatments will help direct your next step.

Window treatments are a great way to control the amount of light allowed into a room.

Knowing your purpose identifies the best options for creating the outcome you desire. For example, if you want “Vegas Black” in your bedroom or a media room, you need to have a minimum of three layers of treatments to make sure not a sliver of light will intrude into your space. It may seem excessive, but if the purpose is to create pitch black, this is the only successful way to do so. If you want to add texture or dimension to your room, there are many ways to do that, with the most common choices such as blinds, curtains, drapes, and shades. In addition, you can layer different window treatments or use window treatments that are non-functional.

Fabric/Material

The next step of identifying and creating window treatments is the fabric/material. There are endless options. Not only with the fabric or material to choose from but also with the color and pattern. Decide on the aesthetic you are trying to achieve in the room and make sure your choice of material complements your design. With the endless variety, you might feel overwhelmed by which look fits your home. Consulting with your interior designer will give you a better understanding of the window treatments that work. A timeless example that works with most styles is a linen fabric creating a bright and airy living space. There are lovely stock colors, even with blinds, or go more luxurious with a custom color that matches your walls.  

Dramatic window curtains
Patterned curtains add a unique design element to the space.

But the choice of material doesn’t stop there. Some trims and finishes can add dimension and interest to your fabric choices. For example, adding a tape to a soft window treatment can significantly impact that luxurious, custom look.  

Lining

Next is the lining. If you want a more casual space, a light lining keeps the space light and airy. A more substantial lining adds a tailored look and can help with light controlling the amount of light entering your room.  

light window treatments
Light and sheer curtains allow for a lot of natural light to fill the space.

Hardware

Finally… the hardware.   The window treatment you have chosen will require specific hardware. Once again so many choices, but honing into your style and aesthetic can help reduce your overwhelm. Ask yourself what style you want to achieve, and does the hardware help to do so? Is it the right finish or color? There are choices for a valance, inside or outside mounts, and cordless options for blinds. By having a clear idea of your style, you can stay on track and order the perfect window treatments for your home.  

bedroom window treatments
Layering different window treatments is a great option for a bedroom where privacy and darkness is important.

If you have the budget, motorization is an excellent addition. Modern technology makes it easier to maintain light control in your room. You can even do this from your phone in another country! Your interior design professional will be up to date on the options available.  

Measurements are Key for Styling Your Windows!

As a DIY’er, getting the proper measurements is a significant step in styling your windows. Choosing blinds is a bit more straightforward than measuring for curtains. However, accurate measurements ensure that you won’t order the wrong products and have properly fitted window treatments. Pro tip: your curtains and drapes should be hung above the window, 10” from the window trim or the ceiling, and flow to the floor. This styling tip gives the effect that the windows are oversized, which can add to the luxuriousness of the overall space.  

layered window treatments
Bedroom Window styling with layers.

Check out the two articles linked here for a step-by-step guide to measuring for window treatments: Measuring Guide for Blinds & Shades and Measuring Your Windows For Curtain Length & Width Made Simple.

Window treatments are an excellent addition to the design of your space. They are the jewelry as well as the workhorse for your room. Don’t make them an afterthought. Each detail is integral to making them pay for themselves; as Charles Eames says, “Details are not the details. They make the design.”