Whether your dream room is formal and filled with fabulous antiques or if it is cozy and sporting worn leather, you can complete the vision with carefully planned window treatments.

Privacy, protection from the sun and energy efficiency rank high on the list of consumer needs for their windows. Blinds and shutters will provide this practical layer of window treatments. Purchase the best that your budget will allow because constant opening and closing will wear on the mechanisms that work these coverings.

Let the (Partial) Sun Shine In

Often we want to enjoy the sun streaming into our home or the view of the trees outside our window but we still want the privacy of a covered window. The solution is installing shades with the top down/bottom up feature.

Simply put, they can be lifted from the bottom to give a view of the outside world but still allowing the lower half of the window to be covered. When privacy is not a concern, they can be used as traditional horizontal blinds.

Top Down / Bottom Up Shades

I recommend these for your office or media room because they will minimize the glare on your computer or television while maintaining a well lit room.

Do not underestimate the damage sun can do to your home and furnishings. Window film can also be used to control the harmful UV rays that will fade your flooring, furniture and artwork.

This coating placed directly on the window panes will block out the heat and deflect glare while allowing sunlight to safely come through the window. You can purchase do it yourself kits or have it professional done.

Clothes For Your Windows

Now it is time to think about the fun layer of window dressing. A room looks complete when you add great treatments. What is the style of your room? What will it look like from the outside? Do you want them stationary or functional?


Panels are as popular now as when your mother was decorating her home. The difference is the variety in headers.

* Grommets create a modern vibe. The panel has metal rings along the top that threads on to your rod. They look best when used in areas they can remain stationary.

* Pinch pleats are strong in the custom treatment business. The most popular look is to hang them from metal or wooden rings. This look works well if you want to open and close your curtains often.

* Tab tops are fun for casual rooms. The tabs can be of different colors, have added buttons or be adorned with tassels. They should be used on windows that you do not need to close the curtains.


Valances are strong in window treatment decor. They add a finished look over your blinds by hiding the mechanical header. Hang them high enough so that they cover the top casing but they do not block the sun streaming into your window. There are so many styles of valances from box pleats to swags. Let your fabric design and the style of your room guide you on choosing the perfect valance.

Enter The Romans

My young clients seem to be drawn to roman shades. They can be easily lower when privacy is needed. When raised, they create a tailored look that works well in so many homes. They look great in a crisp cotton as well as a raw silk.

Window Treatment Crazy? Seek Professional Help

If you have a hard time visualizing the end results, choosing decorative window treatments can be daunting. A designer specializing in windows will take you step by step through the process. They will give you access to resources (fabrics, hardware, specialized blinds) that you would not be able to buy at your local big box store. They will also help protect you from costly mistakes.

What kind of window treatments do I have in my upstairs office? Well, looking at my windows I see delicate wispy strands of silk like material. Even though the design is intricate and somewhat pretty, I think it is time to knock those spider webs down! Until next time, enjoy more decorating ideas and video at my site below.

Author's Bio: 

30 Changes In 30 Days -

Melisa Verch has created a free special decorating guide available to you for a limited time at HowToDecorate.net

Don't miss her decorating ideas video.