Windows are one of the most important elements in the architecture of a room. Windows are also the base of any window treatment. Think of window treatments as a way of displaying, or showing off, your windows. You can use curtains, drapes, shades, blinds, or shutters to simply cover your windows. But if you really think about window treatments, they can provide many more benefits. Let’s consider some of these.
Modesty and good manners tell us that there are times when we and our neighbors want to be isolated from each other. Many apartment buildings, and even homes, are built close enough for us to see our neighbors through their windows and vice versa. Using some sort of window covering gives us visual privacy so we can feel like our space is our own.
Also, at night we want to be able to relax at home and feel that anyone walking by can’t just look in on us. When it’s dark outside, a covered window gives us a feeling of security.
Light Control (Filter the Light)
Different window treatments can let in more or less light, depending on the the type of covering and the material used. For example, shades and blinds can be pulled up or down to let in a little or a lot of light. Or the louvers on shutters can be opened or closed to control light entering a home. Opening our window coverings allows us to bring more natural light into our home. On the other hand, when it’s too bright outside, we can cut down on the light entering our home.
Window treatments can help you conserve energy and reduce your cooling costs. For example, solar shades can help reduce the heat of the sun from transferring to your window and then into your house. If there is less air to cool, you can save on your electric bill. Likewise, by using a window treatment to block direct sunlight at certain times of the day you may need less electricity to cool your home.
Another way window treatments help with energy savings is to make sure the treatment – curtains, drapes, blinds, or shutters – fit the entire window so no light or heat “leaks in” around the edges or top.
Help the Environment
Today people are concerned about using sustainable materials in the window treatments they choose. Newer materials, such as bamboo and organic cotton, as well as drapes and shades that are PVC-free allow you to decorate your windows while showing your concern for the environment. These natural materials also coordinate well with other eco-friendly furnishings.
Set a tone
The window treatment you choose can create different moods or an atmosphere for a room. What’s the feeling your want for your room? Light and airy? Formal? Elegant? Warm and cozy? By the textures, colors, and patterns you choose for your window treatment you can create all of these looks for your room.
Window textures range from wood, to airy curtains you can see through, to cloth in both soft and rougher textures. Colors come in a wide range of solid colors and well as checks and plaids. Patterns allow you to combine colors and designs.
Window treatments, then, allow you to show off your design and decorating skills and make a clear statement about your taste.
Frame the view
Some homes have a beautiful view out of their window, be it a tree, or flowers, a mountain in the distance, or a city view. In this case, the window treatment chosen can dramatically frame the view.
On the other hand, some of us have views of a neighbor’s wall or a side fence. Here, a window treatment can be used to disguise, or cover the outside view. For example, you can hang plants from the ceiling or from a rod to provide a more pleasing sight than what you normally see through the window.
As you see, window treatments offer a range of benefits. So whether you simply want to cover your window for utilitarian purposes or you want to treat your windows to make a decorating statement, many different options are available.