Over the years, drapery has been used in a variety of ways; to cover sunlit windows, to insulate from the cold and heat, as a room divider, and simply to dazzle a room’s appearance. However you choose to utilize your drapes, there are factors that come into play in order to help with a room’s overall styling; the type of hardware, fabric and drape styling you select each have a role in enhancing a space.
Beautiful drapery hardware is a sure way to bring pizazz to your current draperies. There are ways to dress up drapery to make it modern or traditional without having to change the fabric. The key is to know what design aesthetic you are going for.
If you want a modern feel, think clean lines; the simpler your hardware is, the more contemporary your drapes become. Casual choices in drapery hardware are less elaborate end caps on a curtain rod. These types of end caps don’t stick out, while finials usually are decorative and ornamental in design and poke and stand out at the ends of the rod.
The thickness of your drapery rod is also an indicator of casual or traditional styling; however, these days décor has leaned toward a more modern-traditional combination, which marries the simple patterns and fabrics of the mid-century with the intricacies and shapes of traditional décor. So, it really comes down to personal preference.
Ideally, a thicker rod should be used for heavy fabrics, such as velvet, chenille and upholstery weight. Skinnier rods are great for sheers, silks and linen fabrics which are lighter in weight. If you plan to line a lighter weight fabric, be sure to use a pole and finial that matches the styling of the particular room. For example, lined silk goblet drapery will look spectacular in a formal dining room with a mid-sized rod and finial, while lined cotton tab top drapery will look adorable in children’s bedrooms with a thin rod and simple end caps.
If you plan to purchase draperies and you are going for a certain casual look, remember grommets, rod pocket, tab top and tie top drapery styles are all great for the modern, up-to-date bedrooms, playrooms and family rooms.
If you want sophistication and more complex styling, try pleated styles such as pinch pleat, euro pleat and goblet pleat draperies; these are good for dining and formal living spaces. Again, it’s really your personal choice.
The length of your drapery can also change the look of a space. Some people like to show drama by pooling the draperies on the floor. Others choose to cover small windows with wider rods to add the illusion of a wider window. By hanging a rod higher than the top of the window, you can give the impression of taller windows. That’s what’s so versatile about drapes. There is simply so many ways they will work in a home.
There are so many drapery fabrics available that you may have a difficult time selecting the perfect fit for a space. It’s all about the design aesthetic you want to convey. A simple solid fabric will make a subtle statement, while a geometric modern fabric will add much interest and boldness to a window. Damask and toile fabrics are great for a French country kitchen or a semi-formal dining room area. Stripes are great for dens and offices because they can be on the more masculine, sophisticated side. Floral and embroidered fabrics are stunning in sitting rooms and on dining area windows.
The type of material is equally important. Silk fabric is higher in price and most always needs lining to protect the fabric from fading. Silk is also prone to wrinkling and may need to be steamed occasionally. Cotton or cotton blend fabrics are versatile and work well in bedrooms, nurseries and family rooms. Taffeta has the look of silk but less expensive and can be formal or informal. Like silk, it would need to be pressed or steamed to get out the wrinkles. Velvet and chenille are heavier-weighted fabrics, therefore can look heavy and dense on a window. These can be used to block sunlight and add a bit of climate control to a bedroom that may face the sun in the morning or afternoon light. Whatever fabric you decide, pick something you really love. Draperies are an investment that will last, so choose wisely.