Drapes and curtains can make a bold statement in every room; at the same time, they can add a subtle elegance that only highlights a picturesque window. However you look at it, decorating with draperies is functional and stylish and there are many options available. Draperies block light and sound and help to manage heat and cold, but they are also a decorators dream as they have the potential to bring your personality into a room. But before we talk about decorating with draperies, let’s try to define draperies more specifically.
Draperies in today’s lingo generally refer interchangeably to drapes and curtains. However, this is not strictly true. Traditionally, windows would be treated with up to three layers of curtain: a light sash which filters light, a draw curtain to block light completely, and an over-drapery which functioned decoratively only. Moreover, in formal rooms, these layers of curtain may have been covered with a valence to hide hardware. However, modern rooms are treated with draperies differently, and sashes are often called curtains, while draperies are those materials that draw to completely cover a window and block light.
Regardless of how you define draperies, decorating your windows with the right color and material can make or break a room. In fact, even more minor details such as the shape, length, and style of draperies can have a significant impact. Ultimately, when decorating with drapes or curtains, you should consider these features in the bigger picture of the room. Are you looking to create a bright, breezy appearance that would be best served with a lighter, more colorful fabric? Or are you trying to create an elegant, traditional design that might best be served by heavy drapes with embroidered details? The function or purpose of the room should influence your drapery decorating decisions.
Obviously, the color and pattern of your draperies should never be underestimated. Most decorators will try to match some of the colours in fabrics of furniture or the carpet, or even the paint or wallpaper to the colors in the draperies. Often, we want at least one or two colours to bring a room together and your draperies are an integral component of the flow of your room. A room with dark furniture and carpets may best be served by darker colored curtains. Alternatively, flowery curtains and drapes can add a vibrant dimension to any room that will totally change the mood.
Most importantly, use your creativity when decorating with draperies. We often associated drapes exclusively with windows, but there are other ways to utilize these features. For example, a four-post bed becomes even more dramatic if the posts are decorated with elegant draperies. In addition, you can create a private veranda by hanging drapes on open sides of a sundeck if you live in a dry climate.
As is the case with any kind of decorating, always try to match your personality with the style of your room and use draperies to highlight your style while maintaining the flow of that room. There are endless possibilities for decorating with drapes and you should never let your imagination be stifled.