Should you have window treatments or go without? Install solar shades or drapery? The reality is when
it comes to dressing windows, there really aren’t rules, just a myriad of options based on your desired
aesthetic, look and budget.
■ Consider solar shades when looking to achieve a more
modern look. Solar shades come in different opacities. The
higher percentage, the more open the weave. A shade that
provides 3 percent opacity will allow light to enter a room
when down, while a 1 percent opacity shade gives a near
■ Consider a natural material such as wood or bamboo blinds.
They tend to be durable and cost-effective.
■ Cover an entire window opening. Whether you wish to have
your window treatment hardware mounted inside or outside
a frame is a personal choice. But be sure to have window
treatments at either end of the windowsill, or in the case of
long drapery, extend to the floor.
■ Mix window treatments throughout a home. It is perfectly
acceptable to integrate shades, blinds and drapery
throughout different rooms, depending on the desired
■ Consider partial draperies. This is a common trick of
interior designers involving a technique in which panel
drapery is installed as stationary decorative panels on either
side of a window or door opening. These types of panels are
not intended to be functional.
■ Purchase window treatments without consulting a
professional or understanding what measurements are
required to achieve a desired look.
■ Forget to clean window treatments on a regular basis.
Whether via dusting, dry cleaning or placing window
treatments in a washing machine, you will want to keep
them clean and fresh, as they can often be magnets for dirt
■ Ignore safety. Always opt to use suggested child safety
devices around small children.
■ Choose window treatments that will clash with your decor.
In many cases, less is more.
■ Forget that window treatments are decorative
enhancements, not a must. In many instances, a gorgeous
view should take center stage in lieu of window treatments
that could be a potential obstruction.