You can use window shades instead of, or in addition to curtains. By using fabric shades you can still have a soft effect in your room.
Because of their relatively simple nature, shades can be used in almost every type of room, whether it be traditional, modern, period or eclectic. Because they use less fabric than curtains, they usually cost less.
If you want a more architectural look, then use wood or metal in louvre shades.
Situations for Window Shades
If you want to block out direct sunlight but don't want to draw your curtains, then a shade - perhaps set into the window recess - will be a practical solution.
Perhaps you're looking for a more simple effect and don't want the more sumptuous effect of folds of fabric. Use a window shade, such as a roller or roman shade, simple and effective.
You need something at your kitchen window, but are worried about splashes. In this case a roller shade would be ideal. You can buy them with water resistant finishes - perfect for just wiping them occasionally.
You want to display a pattern you really like, but feel you'll lose the effect if you use curtains where the pattern will be partly hidden in the folds of fabric. So use a Roman shade, because when it is down the fabric is flat and perfectly displayed.
If you want a striking but simple effect, use a plain fabric for the shade, but have a border either inset or on the edges. If the border is made from a contrasting fabric, you'll have a really striking effect which is useful where you want a more 'architectural' look.
One of the main advantages of a blind is simplicity. Although you can have them looking quite sophisticated, if you want a simple, straightforward, and not too expensive solution, window shades may be just the thing you're looking for.
Make the most of your window frame - or hide it!
- You may have a very attractive window, perhaps with a frame you don't want to cover up. Some form of shade can be a perfect compliment to the window, especially if you can set it into the recess.
- Alternatively, you may have a frame you wish to hide, or at least the top part, which can often look heavy. In this case, make the shade slightly wider than the frame, and position it on the top so the frame is hidden.
- If your fame is really ugly, then think about having sheer dress curtains hiding the frame, and a shade to pull down for privacy.
- Suppose you have a small window, or one which has unattractive proportions and would look better if it were taller. Fix your shade a foot or so above the top of the window frame, and leave it down to cover the top of the frame. Your window will now appear to be taller than it really is.
To find out more about the practical aspects of shades, such as which types to use and mistakes to avoid, go to this page.