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Category: Curtain Rods

Dressing Your Patio Door

 

Patio doors are lovely because they bring the outdoors inside. However, there comes a time when drawing a curtain over a patio door is necessary. Curtains give privacy to a room and shield it from the hot summer sun and frosty cold air of winter. If you extend the curtain rod past the patio doors, the curtain can stay out of the doorway and provide an unobstructed opening to the outdoors. Hanging a curtain rod can be accomplished by following simple directions using a few simple steps.

 

*What is the curtain’s stacking width? In other words, what is the width of the curtains when they are pushed open? Put the curtains on the rod and lay them out on the floor or a table, and push them to one side. Measure the width of the gathered end. This is your stacking width.

 

*With a measuring tape, measure from the upper right corner of the door frame out the number of inches of your stacking width. Mark the spot on the wall with a pencil. Do the same thing on the left side of the door.

 

*Measure up at least three inches from your corner marks. This is where the rods will be attached to the wall. You always want to be sure that the closed curtains will cover the frame at the top.

 

*Measure from the mark on the left over to the mark on the right. At the halfway point make another mark. This is where the middle support bracket will go.

 

*Attach your brackets, hang your rod and enjoy the view!

Put Away Your Hammer

 

Not all of us can walk through our home with hammer and nails in hand. If your lease or dorm rules prohibit you from nailing up drapery brackets you need to find a get creative. One solution would be to use a tension rod from Umbra which will allow you to hang lightweight curtains without mounting hardware. You can also use tmporary hook. The kind that stick on the wall and then remove with out damage. As long as your window treatments are not too heavy, either method you select will be adequate for holding up the hardware.

To install a tension rod, measure the length and width of the inside of the window frame. Choose a curtain made from lightweight fabric. The length should ideally be equal to or slightly shorter than the length of the inside of the window frame. The width can vary, depending on how much fullness you desire. Tension rods are adjustable within a certain range. Be sure to pick the longest rod that will fit in your window to ensure the greatest amount of spring tension to keep the rod secure. Turn the end sections of the rod to change the length, making it slightly less wide than the window opening.Slide the curtains on and then place the rod near the top of the wiindow frame at a spot where the hem of the curtain will brush the window sill.

If you decide to uses temporary hooks, attach them as you would nails – one on each corner of the window just outside the frame. It’s best if you leave the hooks in place for about an hour to let the adhesive set up. When picking curtains for this application, make sure the weight of the fabric does not exceed the combined weight of the two hooks.

Sometimes a sheer curtain or one that is lightweight enough to hang from either of these two methods isn’t quite enough. Designed to cling to your window through the use of static electricity, window cling film from Etch Art is completely removable and reusable. Installation is easy. Just wash the window, trim the film to size and apply a layer of water to the window. Place the film against the window and squeegee away any excess water and air. Add a decorative touch or use privacy films to help keep any eyes from looking in.

Now there’s no excuse to be stuck with boring apartment or dormitory vertical blinds ever again. Put away your useless hammer and get out your ruler or tape measure and get to work!

The Swing Arm

 

Swing arm curtain rods are drapery hardware that have a hinge at one end. They are particularly good for small windows in bathrooms, the windows on doors, or any other place that it would be more convenient to swing the curtain to the side rather than to slide it to either side on the rod. You could even use them on a wider window if you wanted, by using a pair that would swing out from the center of the window.

 

The best thing about these rods is that they are decorative as well as functional. Umbra, the worldwide leader in casual, contemporary, affordable designer drapery hardware for the home makes swing arm rods designed for light weight drapery treatments and are available in bronze, and pewter.

Swing arm curtain rods are especially useful for French doors because they allow you to simply swing curtains to the side instead of pushing them out of the way. It is important to mount swing arm curtain rods correctly. Follow these simple steps for an easy installation.

*Consider where you want to mount the swing arm curtain rods. Your options include the wall closest to the door, outside or inside the frame or even on the ceiling above the frame. Make sure the arm can move easily from the location you choose.

*Measure the width of the window.

*Determine where you want the curtain rod to swing, this may either be to the frame or near the upper edge of the window.

*Mark the screws in the right position.

*Before installing the screws drill holes. You may need drywall anchors if you do not strike a stud when drilling.

*Keep in mind that you need to level both the curtain rods with the side by side windows. Screw in the swing arm curtain rods and move them back and forth to ensure that they swing freely. If you find impeded movement of the arm, you may have to alter its position.

What Exactly is a Bay WIndow?

Bay window is a common term for a protruding window construction. Most of the time they are polygon shapes or square in design, but they also may curved. In its most basic form, a bay window consists of two protruding windows. A bay window can add depth and architectural elements to your home, and provide a wonderful opportunity to stretch your decorating muscles. A bay window can be a cozy place to sip your coffee, or it can provide a frame for a picturesque view.

 

The best part of the bay window is usually the view. Don’t take away from this natural asset by overpowering your window with clutter. Consider the room you’re window is in. If it is adjacent to a busy dining area or kitchen, it’s probably best to minimize the decorations. However, if it bookends a grand library or formal dining room, color, texture and pattern would be the ideal enhancement.

 

If you have a bay window, you really must have a window seat. There isn’t anything nicer then curling up with a good book in the afternoon sun. If your window did not come with a seat, put wall cabinets in under your window and top with bright cushions. If that will not work, place a comfy chair or some floor cushions next to it. Just be sure to give yourself the chance to linger comfortably and enjoy the view.

 
Another tip is to frame your window with color: add some potted and hanging plants and flowers that thrive in sunlight. They will enhance the view of your yard and bring some nature into the room if yours is a city view.  There are also so many choices when it comes to window treatments for your bay window. A classic Roman shade or blind is versatile and will help avoid over-decorating the space. Shutters, either wooden or sleek metal, are perfect for creating a private, cozy nook.

 
Draperies and curtains will add bright color and texture to your window. If you want to extend the appearance of width use curtains or drapes to cover the walls framing the area. This technique will let in the sunlight while keeping the charm and color of curtains. Sheer curtains are also an option to keep your window private without blocking the light. Sheers will add texture to the room and can be dressed up with bright curtain panels or valances.

 

A bay window can even be a child’s special place to dream and play. It’s easy to find kid-themed decorations that can be anything from stars to dance to transportation or sports. Base your decorating theme on your child’s interests. Don’t worry if his interests change; most window cling decorations can be designed to be temporary and will not hurt window glass, walls or window seat if they need to be removed.

 

We’ll look some more at this topic next time. In the meanwhile, start that template we discussed the other day and order your hardware so we can get started!

Your Bay Window

 

Bay windows are fashionable features in many homes. Their  unusual angled shape is striking in itself, and they  let in plenty of natural light and provide panoramic views However, when it comes to hanging  curtains and curtain hardware, many homeowners are often perplexed as to  how to handle the window’s unusual shape. Often these windows have a window seat as well. Don’t let the challenge of curtain or drapery hardware frighten you away from  drawing attention to this lovely spot in your home. There are some creative options for bay window hardware that are fairly easy to install.

Bay window curtain rods are designed in several pieces but work together as one rod. They are specially designed so  that each of the three rod sections is individually adjustable in length. This allows you to tailor each rod section to your specific bay window for a custom fit. Graber makes custom bay and bow window traverse curtain rods that are heavy duty and designed to carry about 1 1/2 pound per foot. Great if you are planning on hanging lush draperies. Graber’s rods are custom made traverse rods that are made to your exact measurements. They suggest that you make a template to help eliminate any possible mistakes due to inconsistent window shapes as well as take precise measurements. As a matter of fact, call them, and they will gladly walk you through the process.

 

Once you receive your hardware, what do you do next?

 

*Have someone on hand to help if you choose to hang curtains on one bay window rod. A bay curtain rod is basically  an adjustable track that can be bent to conform to the contour of the windows allowing the draperies to hang along one rod instead of three separate rods. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for hanging the bay curtain rod. Use the included hardware and drill holes to firmly secure it in the woodwork.

*Slide the curtains onto the rods before mounting them. Adjust the curtains to make them hang evenly along the rods.

*Add tie backs for a decorative touch. Put
the tie-backs at the approximate level of where there would be a window seat.
There are so many options with a bay window and so many ways to dress it, and to utilize it. Check back later as we discover how to live with a bay window.

Jewelry for Your Windows

 

Drapery rods and rings are the jewelry of your windows. They add shimmer to enhance metallic finishes in the room, or if they are bamboo, iron or rich woods, they add a hint of sophistication and the finishing touch to the dressing of the window. If you decide to use finials, the little sculptures of wood, iron or bamboo on the end of the rods, it’s as if you’ve added a tiara to a head full of curls.

 

Like any dress fitting, the hardware for your windows needs to fit properly. When measuring a window for decorative hardware, follow these simple steps:

 

*Measure the width of your window treatments, noting whether or not taking you want to mount hardware on the wall or directly on the window trim.
*Allow 1 1/2″ – 3″ on each side of the window for when the drapes are open all the way.
*Consider any extra wall space needed for decorative finials: the rod dimensions do not include additional width added by each finial.
*If you want to make the windows appear larger, mount the curtain rod 6″ above the trim and allow the rod width to extend 3″ beyond the window’s actual width.

 

Most drapery hardware accessories are designed to provide stylish accents to complete the look of your window treatments. Tiebacks can be used to hold draperies off to the sides of a window and can be as simple fabric strips or can be more elaborate bows. Holdbacks will offer the same functionality as tiebacks, but they consist of rigid, decorative materials that are secured to a wall providing a holder for keeping drapes and curtains in an open position. Rings, clips, hooks and pulls are what connect drapes and curtains to the rod and may be either hidden or decoratively visible. Styles range from simple, unadorned wrought iron rings to clips with decorative leaves or stars. Drapery jewelry can take a number of different forms, such as covered buttons.

 

If what you are looking for is a completely different look, install a hinged rod. This type of rod allows you to swing curtains back and forth, covering the window when you want it covered and keeping the curtain in another spot when you don’t. Do be sure that it is installed in an area where the curtain provides some decorative value when not covering the window!

How to Make or Break Your Windows

 

Did you know that the type of drapery hardware you choose can make or break your window’s look? It’s important to choose your hardware before or at the same time as your drapes or curtains. Drapes are usually heavier than curtains and most of the time they require a more stable rod. Because of the more formal nature of drapes, you can use more elaborate hardware than you would with simple, sheer curtains.

Before the drapes can go up, you’ll need a drapery rod. Drapery rods come in a variety of styles, café rods, including decorative rods, concealed rods, and traverse rods. Decorative rods are typically more elaborate and much heavier than other types of rods. As the name implies, concealed rods are hidden by the drapes and traverse rods are only seen when drape have been pulled open. If you’re looking for something simple, try cafe rods, which are smaller in diameter than the other drapery rods.

If you’ve installed a standard drapery rod and want to dress it up, purchase new finials. They might be as simple as the Balle Finial from Orion, or as elaborate as the Grappe, also from Orion. Finials are the decorative balls or figures that are attached to the end of the rod.

Depending on the type of drapes you’ve purchased, you may need rings to hang your drapes. Drapery rings are typically at least 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter and usually snap open and closed much like shower rings do. You can purchase simple wooden styles or try the Italian Baroque flat ring with eye and insert from Vesta.

In order to attach the rods to the wall or window frame you are going to need brackets. In some cases, simple brackets will be provided with the drapery rod you purchased. However, you can purchase more decorative brackets, such as wrought-iron brackets from the Robert Allen Ferraforte Collection. They are so pretty, and come antique brass, black, earth rust, Georgian copper, Georgian gold, and pewter. A hammered decorative rosette is sold separately and attaches easily to the front of the bracket.
The possibilities for dressing your windows is endless but not impossible. Take a walk through your house and take a long look at your windows and current treatments. Do they need freshening up? Next time we’ll look at drapes and other window dressing. Right now focus on the hardware. It will get easier, I promise.

Drapery Hardware V Annoying Walls

 

The curtain rod has become a fundamental part of window treatments. You can find them in  different designs, different finishes and with interchangeable finials that add character to the rod.  They are hard to pass up! As a matter of fact, ONA Wrought Iron Drapery Hardware has some very pretty and very unique curtain rods and finials. Their rods are custom made for each  client using only premium heavy gauge steel, wrought iron, and crystals.High quality materials are also used to manufacture their wide range of drapery hardware accessories, finials, brackets, holdbacks and rings.

 

Do not let a hollow plaster wall deter you from hanging your choice of curtain rod, as hollow wall screw anchors are available to hang even the heaviest items. Hanging drapery hardware in plaster can be tricky because of the composition of plaster walls. Plaster is a hard surface with a configuration similar to concrete or plaster of Paris. The top finish is applied over a system of wood or metal lathing. Plaster in an older home may be brittle and will often crumble. Before purchasing anchors consider the weight of the draperies you plan to hang to determine the type of anchor or fastener used.

 

If you are plannning to hang light weight curtain, pre-drill a hole into the plaster that is slightly smaller in diameter than the mounting screws you will be using. Use a hand screwdriver rather than a motorized drill driver to insert the screw into the plaster. Over tightening the screw may pull it out of the wall. If the screw pulls does come out because you’re overzealous, a plastic anchor installed in the screw hole will solve the problem.

 

Medium weight drapery rods will need  assistance from plastic anchors for installation. Mark the wall and then pre-drill the holes slightly smaller than the plastic anchor you will use. Gently tap the anchor into the hole and use the screws that came with the anchors to install the bracket. Again, over tightening the anchor may end up in it pulling out of the wall. Tighten just enough for the anchor to expand and snuggly fit in to the plaster wall.

 

If you’ve decided to go with heavy weight drapery rods, toggle bolts are going to be needed to hold it in place. Check the package for the drill bit size recommended to drill pre-marked holes in the plaster wall. Insert the bolts through the drapery rod bracket, then screw on the winged nut .Gently screw the nut up the shaft of the bolt. The winged nut will open on the behind the wall increasing the amount of area to support the weight of the drapery rod. If the winged nuts fall out, they will drop down into the wall necessitating a new winged nut to be installed.

Victorian Elegance

Although Queen Victoria died in 1901, her influence in the design world was still felt well into the 20th century. Victorian style is known for being detailed, high-spirited and busy with ornamentation. However, in the kitchen, a more subdued and practical approach needs to be taken to window treatments in order to keep the room as a functional space. It is possible to create custom-looking, Victorian-style window treatments for your kitchen and still maintain modern practicality.

The valance is the standard Victorian window treatment. Typically they are box shaped, with variations in embellishment, edging style and accessories. A valance is a scarf for the window top, mooring it to the room. Victorian valances were known to integrate various clothing styles of the day: the festoon and the cascade. The festoon detail was comprised of a ribbon of fabric, draped or scooped to create a folded, teardrop affect. A Victorian kitchen curtain may have two or more festoons across the front to give fullness to the valance and show off rich fabric. The cascade, a panel placed on the sides of the valance, was a tapered, gathered piece that went down the sides of the window. It’s particularly good for the kitchen because it is up out of the way, and lets in natural light while adding color and texture to the décor. The valance will also hide the curtain rod or top of the blinds .A valance can be detailed with fringe, tassels or beading for an even more ornate Victorian flair.

 
Another practical kitchen window design element is the wooden or bamboo window blind. In the late 1800s a variety of window coverings made from coated hardwood or bamboo made for sturdy, functional shades to darken a room. In the kitchen, blinds are practical and lend a modern link between traditional Victorian decor and contemporary design. Pair your blinds with a stenciled curtain or tasseled valance and your kitchen window treatment will look authentically Victorian.

Another window “treatment” that was extremely popular during the Victorian period was stained glass. The late Victorian era was influenced by Tiffany’s fluid, organic designs. Purchasing and installing a stained glass window can be prohibitive. Etch Art Stained Glass design has an easy way to transform any window into beautiful stained glass that will look like it cost hundreds of dollars. The privacy design obscures visibility through the glass during the day and night. The film adheres to smooth glass using static electricity instead of glue or adhesives and is completely reusable. In fact, Etch Art window films incorporate real glass for an authentic sparkle and shimmer and filters 95 percent of the sun’s harmful UV rays. Add a lace valance and your kitchen is on its way to Victorian elegance.

Staging your Windows

 

Low lit rooms may seem cozy to you, but if you are in the process of selling your home, brighten it up! Dimly lit spaces look small and dingy especially during the day. Most people are drawn to natural light. Natural light elevates your mood, illuminates a room and can even add a dramatic effect as the sun casts rays in different corners of the room. Take a walk through your house and reassess your windows and their treatments.

 

Installing window treatments us really quite easy depending on the type of hardware you are installing. The most important tip I can share with you is to measure, then measure again. The easiest installation is the drapery rod, which requires a few screws in select locations. Do be sure to have proper tools – screwdrivers, a drill, level, pencil, measuring tape, (see The Right Tool for the Right Job). Sure, you can do this on your own, but it’s much easier to do it with a friend helping. Of course, If you’re uncomfortable doing the job yourself, call in a professional.

 

Window treatments are the best way to introduce color and style to a room. Use accessories to make a room to pop with color rather than the paint on the walls. Balance the color and texture choices carefully, drawing the attention of buyers to the windows, yet don’t overwhelm them with curtains and draperies. Window treatments are not usually permanent and you can take them with you when you sell your home, but many buyers may ask for the treatments to be included with the sale of the house when they put in an offer. Keep the price of the treatments in mind so that you can part with them, or that you don’t lose the sale because you didn’t want to let them go.

 

When you showing your home, don’t forget to maximize the natural light in every room. Open the blinds and shades up and push the curtains or drapes to the side. For drapery you could use tiebacks, but the best way to show off your windows is with the installation of the drapery rods. Install the rod six inches or so outside the edge of the window and two or three inches above the frame. This will make your window appear larger than it actually is and will also maximize the amount of light coming through. By installing the rods outside the frame, you will get a lot more light and a better view of the wood trim that might bear showing off.