How To Ditch The Drapes And Let Your Windows Shine

How To Ditch The Drapes And Let Your Windows Shine

Drapes are a beautiful — and functional — home privacy solution, great for covering up an unwanted view inside or out. But when your home has beautiful windows and privacy isn’t an issue, why hide them? Consider some of these classic and creative ways to dress your windows, whether you live in a secluded country house or a high-rise city apartment.
Black Sashes

Sashes in interior design refer to the parts of the window holding each pane of glass in place — the frames within the frame.

Painting your sashes black is a classic way to create instant drama in a window without adding anything else. It’s common in countryside estates but looks perfectly contemporary in a more modern home that isn’t the size of an estate.
The window becomes like a sleek black picture frame, presenting the view beyond like art that changes a little each day.

Tip: Pair this look with small touches of black elsewhere so the space feels harmonious without looking gothic. Inexpensive frames or espresso wood chairs are perfect complements.
Green Sashes

Or try a dark green window sash. It’s softer than black but still classic and neutral, as it picks up the colors in nature. A magnificently tall ceiling like this one is beautiful but not required
Elegant Moldings

When a client’s home has historic character, I never want to cover it up. Shades mounted inside the window frame, paired with eye-catching trim, allow light control without feeling fussy.

If you don’t have historic molding, a window is a great place to add some. It’s a smaller task than lining a whole ceiling, and you can do it in just one room.

Tip: I often paint window trim the same color as the wall to obscure any flaws or uneven edges. But I use a higher-gloss paint to make it shine.

Frame Your Views With Great Moldings and Casings
If you have expansive windows, molding will create a more “decorated” look on the wall without blocking the view. It adds texture — so you won’t feel as though you’re surrounded solely by cold glass — while keeping the space airy.

Keep in mind when considering this look that north-facing windows are the best ones to leave bare, as they don’t receive harsh direct light. South-facing windows without shades or blinds could leave you blinded and overheated at midday. (The reverse is true in the Southern Hemisphere.)

Uncovered windows also can create more heat loss, so if you live in a cold climate, you may want to consider adding a heat-retaining film or an in-window shade for winter warmth.
Layered Windows 

Mirrors. Here’s a look I recently enjoyed while visiting the Shangri-La Hotel in Vancouver: mirrors layered over bathroom windows. It creates a resort feel but is practical and can be re-created at home.

Hanging a mirror in the window (either on a picture wire or by fixed metal supports) fills in the window enough to create a sense of privacy while still allowing light to filter in. For more privacy simply cover the exposed glass with translucent film.

Using a mirror this way allows you to move the vanity to areas you didn’t think possible. Imagine the floor plans you could create with your sink in front of a window.
The look also works with the mirror offset against the window. Using a window shade that matches the wall color helps smooth the asymmetry.
Shelves. As the trend of open upper shelves continues to grow, people are looking for new ways to apply them. One of my favorite ways is stretching shelves across windows.
Naturally, you’ll want to consider how your windows open and ensure that they remain operational. 

This arrangement works with many shelves, or one, at a lower height for everyday items and a higher height for special pieces, such as the good china.

The look is especially effective when your kitchen view is of a neighboring building. You won’t feel too boxed in, but the emphasis will be drawn away from the wall beyond.
Where possible, extend the look beyond the counters to help tie together a full room. This shelf can be used as a display space for flowers, photos or seasonal decorations.
Lights. If you have a well-placed window in your kitchen but the angle does not invite a lot of light, it could be a perfect place to add a pendant light. The fixture will help illuminate the counter and will give the feeling of a natural radiance emanating from the outdoors.
These layering looks can be combined to even greater effect.
Art. If your tastes run to the whimsical or eclectic, consider hanging art in front of a window. This creates an unexpected statement and is especially effective in contemporary condos that have no other place for art.

Tip: Make sure your art is secured well to the trim (and is in a UV-filtering frame). Or simply hang a light, inexpensive print on a stick-on hook for a fun look that can be changed when you want a different view.
Source: Simard

Christy Peterson Headshot
Phone: 774-287-5322
Dated: November 21st 2014
Views: 1,054
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