There are many different aspects that go into the style and design of your home. One of which are windows and how they are styled. Curtains & or Blinds, probably something that you wouldn’t think is important. That is until you see the difference that these items can create in your home. Whether it’s a dark cinema room or an open, bright living area the incorporation of Blinds or curtains can make an enormous difference. We have included some information and tips for both Curtains and Blinds.
Whether you like heavy drapes or soft sheers that billow in the breeze, “Curtains can be used to frame a window, layer a room or add warmth, movement and texture,” says Paul Hecker, director of Hecker Guthrie. Traditionally kept to bedrooms and formal living areas, there’s a growing trend for sheer and motorised curtains in open-plan living spaces. The most style-savvy homeowners are also embracing muted colours and folk- and floral-inspired prints. “We will be seeing a shift towards ‘beautiful’ fabrics and a softness that moves us away from minimalism,” says Toby Gray, director of BQ Design. Organic grey shades now offer a modern update on cream and white, and richer hues can be introduced to complement a room’s colour palette. The only rule? “Curtains should always touch the floor,” says Paul.
Sun, moisture and pollutants all damage curtains. However, most wear and tear is a result of fabric handling. Wands and flick sticks keep hands clear of the material, while quality lining will help reduce fading. If in any doubt as to washing requirements, always have your curtains professionally cleaned.
Eyelets. With a choice of nickel-plated, brass or antique brass rings, these are ideal for light fabrics. A major benefit of eyelets is the fabric stacks right back to let in more of the view.
Soft and casual. “I prefer a relaxed approach to curtain headings, so we avoid pleating tape,” says Paul Hecker. The result is a soft, modern finish, where the curtain seems to drape quite naturally.
Recessed pelmets. Actually built into the architecture of a room, recessed pelmets hide curtain tracks in the ceiling space to achieve a streamlined finish.
From translucent roller blinds to romans and timber venetians, the enduring beauty of blinds is their ability to control light – and disappear when required. “Roller blinds are a great solution for achieving light control with minimal design impact,” says Andrea D’Cruz. A less-formal style of window treatment, they tend to be relegated to family areas, where blockout styles offer UV protection by day and added insulation at night. Motorised roller or panel glides also make them easy to control over large spaces. While see-through styles diffuse light without losing the view, in winter, “The most important thing is to make a large room feel cosy,” says Paul Hecker, who often layers blinds beneath curtains. He prefers soft roman blinds, which can be sheer, textured or bonded with a blockout fabric.
Most blinds do not respond well to water or chemical solvents. Instead, dust regularly and then spot-clean any stains. Roman, roller and cellular blinds can all
be vacuumed – use a soft brush attachment and take care not to stretch or pull the fabric. Venetians rarely need more than a wipe over with a soft microfibre cloth.
Key Trends in Window Treatments
- Understated minimalism is making way for something bolder with vibrant colours and interesting pattern and detailing
- Curtains add instant glamour and drama to a room scheme
- Old-fashioned pelmets are back in fashion – not only do they neatly finish off the look of curtains, but they have great insulating properties and reduce heat loss in winter and keep a room cool in summer
- Double roller blinds are gaining in popularity, and they’re ideal for the Australian climate – they’re made up of a blockout blind for night and a separate sunscreen blind that reduce the light but still allows you to enjoy the view
- Long, sheer curtains are in vogue – combine two tones of sheers in dark colours such as smoky grey and rich brown to soften sharp architectural details
- Nature is a recurrent theme with bamboo fabrics and robust, earthy textures for curtains and blinds, and exposed wood grain for venetians