Window treatments stick around longer than most other home décor items. Some homeowners buy new ones every two to three years, but many keep the same dusty drapes, saggy swags, and bent blinds for decades. Interior decorator Lori Byrne says the decision to make a change, and the steps involved, can feel overwhelming since window treatments are such an important part of a room.
“Window treatments save you from living in a fishbowl, they control the light, and they just really dress up the room,” says Byrne. “They’re like the jewellery added to an outfit.”
Working with an in-house decorator takes the guesswork out of ordering new window treatments. At Costandi Designs in Truro, N.S., Byrne shows homeowners different designs and fabric swatches, does all of the measurements and accompanies the installer when everything’s ready.
But whether you’re ordering custom window treatments, shopping for a ready-made option, or sewing them yourself, Byrne says the first step is determining what you need from them: sun control, privacy, energy efficiency, or window dressing. Then you can explore different designs and materials to see what suits your home’s style.
Not sure where to begin? Here are five window treatment trends to watch:
The popular Danish Hygge (pronounced “hue-ga”) movement embraces life’s simple, cozy pleasures like a hot cup of tea, a good book, and a fluffy white duvet. Hygge-loving homeowners opt for natural fibres, earthy textures, and calming neutral tones.
“A lot of our clients are choosing blinds and draperies made with natural fibres,” says Byrne. “We also do a lot of white wood blinds that blend in, when people want the view to be the showstopper, not the window treatments.”
The ability to remotely raise, lower or close your window treatments is useful if you have mobility issues. Nobody wants their elderly parent teetering on a sofa trying to reach a blind cord. But Byrne says automated window treatments, like the ones she sources from Hunter Douglas, are popular with homeowners of all ages and abilities.
“You can operate them with your smartphone, so you can adjust them from the couch across the room or from Australia,” says Byrne. “It’s pretty fabulous.”
The farmhouse-chic look is still going strong, and that’s extended to using wooden shutters on the inside of a window, especially in bedrooms. Byrne says they’re simple, easy to clean, and excellent for adjusting light control, especially compared to a roller shade that’s either up or down.
Sometimes the hardware is the star of the show while the curtains, natural reams of white or cream, take a backseat. Think chunky wooden rods and finials or even industrial-looking copper fixtures.
Home décor often follows fashion trends, so we’re seeing a fearless mix of patterns on runway models and windows alike. This is easiest when you combine patterns from the same designer’s collection.
Byrne says when customers choose side panels with a roman shade tucked inside, they often mix patterns for added interest.
If the thought of a potential clash terrifies you, then this one isn’t for you. While some homeowners love a big, bold pattern on their window treatments, Byrne says most opt for something more classic that can be enjoyed for years.
Windows can sap up to half your home’s heating and cooling energy, so homeowners are loving honeycomb shades. They’re made from 3-D hexagons that trap air to maintain your home’s temperature.
Byrne says honeycomb shades also offer a “top down, bottom up” feature that allows you to adjust the panels as the sunlight changes.
“You can get privacy on the lower half while letting in light on the upper half,” says Byrne. “It’s the best of both worlds.”